True Women: Martha

Martha Bennett is a slave played by Salli Richardson-Whitfield.


Salli Richardson-Whitfield as Martha.
Her story is an interesting one. We get a lot of character development.


Martha is given to Georgia as a wedding gift. Turns out Martha is Georgia's cousin. Her owner and father is Georgia's uncle. Martha remained a slave because if her father had given her her freedom she would have been taken by someone else and sold back into slavery (that's the story they're going with anyway).

During most of the movie there is a struggle between Martha and Georgia. They have to learn how to balance the slave-master dynamic as blood cousins.





 Martha is given to Georgia as a wedding gift. Turns out Martha is Georgia's cousin. Her owner and father is Georgia's uncle. Martha remained a slave because if her father had given her her freedom she would have been taken by someone else and sold back into slavery (that's the story they're going with anyway).

During most of the movie there is a struggle between Martha and Georgia. They have to learn how to balance the slave-master dynamic as blood cousins.

Martha is a light skinned mulatto but contrary to the house slave stereotype (often shown in films) she is a field slave.

We get a peak into her relationship with her father when she's asked why she calls her father master and not father. She tells Georgia that him being her father changed nothing. He was still her master. She goes on to tell Georgia:

Cousin is just a name. Slave is a brand it goes deeper than blood. ~ Martha

This was said much to Georgia's dismay but historically Martha's words were proven to be true.












From her first day on the plantation Martha took a liking to another slave named,  Ed Tom. They end up together and with a son named Lee.












They receive their freedom because of the Emancipation Proclamation. Martha and Ed Tin stay with Georgia as family members. Martha has come to love her cousin as a cousin. The last we see of Martha is when Union soldiers take over the house. Martha ans her family survive.

I like the handling of Martha's story. She too could have a film of her own.

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