‘Ask a Slave’ talks race and gender issues in the age of YouTube

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tags: slavery, Ask a Slave, historical interpretation

It’s 1795, and George Washington’s most acerbic-tongued housemaid is answering questions — on YouTube.

Her name is Lizzie Mae, and she is not here for your foolishness. She’s got shirts to sew and chamber pots to scrub....

Lizzie Mae is the brainchild of Azie Dungey, creator of the Web series “Ask a Slave.” She came up with the idea after portraying Caroline Branham, an actual slave, for nearly two years while she worked as a character actor at Mount Vernon, Washington’s plantation home.

Dungey thought she had enough material for one season: six episodes, each four to five minutes long, featuring her at a small table with a cup of tea and portraits of the Washingtons behind her. Her braided hair is covered with a frilly white cap, and Lizzie Mae, clad in a high-waisted Colonial dress and apron, answers questions in the voice of a folksy, Southern grandmother about what it’s like being owned by the father of our country and his wife....

Read entire article at Washington Post

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