Category: Harlem Renaissance

Literary Black History

As Black History Month winds to a close, I thought I’d focus my attention on some of the work I’m familiar with that’s either by African American writers, or in some way has to do with civil rights.

The Interesting Narrative of the Life of Olaudah Equiano: or, Gustavus Read the rest

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Gwendolyn Brooks

Poet Gwendolyn Brooks (1917-2000) was born on June 7th in Topeka, Kansas. Brooks’ family moved to Chicago when she was very young and she remained there for much of her life, later becoming a frequent contributor to local and regional publications and programs. She was chosen as the Illinois Poet … Read the rest

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Amiri Baraka

Amiri Baraka was born Everett LeRoy Jones on October 7, 1934 in Newark, New Jersey to Coyette (“Coyt”) LeRoy Jones and Anna Lois Jones. He graduated from high school with honors in 1951 and began attending Rutgers University, only to transfer to Howard University in 1952. It was also in … Read the rest

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Their Eyes Were Watching God

“It was a time for sitting on porches beside the road … Mules and other brutes had occupied their skins … the sun and the bossman were gone, so the sins felt powerful and human.” This was the first generation of blacks born free, free from the bonds of slavery … Read the rest

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Zora Neale Hurston

Writing about Zora Neale Hurston is a bit of a challenge. She began publishing her short stories in periodicals during the Harlem Renaissance, but didn’t publish her major novels until the 1930’s. Her age varied according to what she felt like saying at the time. She was bold and … Read the rest

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Richard Wright

Richard Wright’s ‘Native Son’ is classic protest literature. It ranks alongside great works like ‘Grapes of Wrath’ by John Steinbeck. It is a book with an agenda, but it expresses a deep sympathy for humanity. It is Richard Wright’s most celebrated work (though his autobiography ‘Black Boy’ has also won … Read the rest

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