What is the speech "Ain't I a Woman" about?

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pohnpei397 eNotes educator| Certified Educator

The speech by Sojourner Truth that is now known as the “Ain’t I a Woman” speech is about women’s rights.  Truth gave the short speech in 1851 at a women’s rights convention in Akron, Ohio.  We do not know exactly what she said, as there were different reports of the speech. 

The speech that is now attributed to Truth is reprinted in the link below.  Looking at that speech, you can see that it is about women’s rights.  Truth challenges the idea that women cannot be as strong and as capable as men.  She says she does not need to be lifted over puddles and she says that she can plow and plant as well as any man.  After each point, she allegedly said “and ain’t  I a woman?”  She is making the point that she, a woman, was as capable as a man in various ways.   By making this claim, she is defeating the idea that women should not have rights because they are inferior to men.  This speech, then, is a speech in favor of women’s rights.

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