Tag Archives: Black History Month

Where you goin’ with that gun in your hand?

Fifty years after his assassination in New York’s Audubon Ballroom, the name Malcolm X remains synonymous with militancy and rage, with the angrier voice in the Civil Rights Movement. If Malcolm Little’s path to becoming Malcolm X and, before his … Continue reading

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Hush now…It is in the doing

It is Black History Month. As counter-intuitive as it may sound, William Faulkner is unavoidable in taking the measure of American black life. The assertion needs bearing out. Reading Faulkner is to experience many things: difficulty, especially when he writes … Continue reading

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Why There Is No Great American Novel

As Black History Month approaches, I’d like to ask you to look at literary history and ask, ‘Why is there no great American novel?’ I understand that many readers will scan their shelves and rush to the contrary that there … Continue reading

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Silence Gathers Around A Footnote

There is another writer who, along with Zora Neale Hurston, should have had a meteoric career. For those who may not know Hurston’s fate and later renaissance, the facts go like this: she attended Howard University from 1919 to 1925; … Continue reading

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Not Uncle Tom’s Children

Richard Wright’s novel, Native Son, was the first bestselling novel (and Book-of-the-Month Club selection) by an African-American writer. Native Son sold over 200,000 copies in the month after its publication. I’m generalizing a bit here, but most readers who have … Continue reading

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