A Long Way From Home / Edition 1

A Long Way From Home / Edition 1

5.0 1
by Gene Andrew Jarrett, Claude McKay
     
 

ISBN-10: 0813539684

ISBN-13: 9780813539683

Pub. Date: 02/28/2007

Publisher: Rutgers University Press

Claude McKay (1889–1948) was one of the most prolific and sophisticated African American writers of the early twentieth century. A Jamaican-born author of poetry, short stories, novels, and nonfiction, McKay has often been associated with the “New Negro” or Harlem Renaissance, a movement of African American art, culture, and intellectualism

Overview

Claude McKay (1889–1948) was one of the most prolific and sophisticated African American writers of the early twentieth century. A Jamaican-born author of poetry, short stories, novels, and nonfiction, McKay has often been associated with the “New Negro” or Harlem Renaissance, a movement of African American art, culture, and intellectualism between World War I and the Great Depression. But his relationship to the movement was complex. Literally absent from Harlem during that period, he devoted most of his time to traveling through Europe, Russia, and Africa during the 1920s and 1930s. His active participation in Communist groups and the radical Left also encouraged certain opinions on race and class that strained his relationship to the Harlem Renaissance and its black intelligentsia. In his 1937 autobiography, A Long Way from Home, McKay explains what it means to be a black “rebel sojourner” and presents one of the first unflattering, yet informative, exposés of the Harlem Renaissance. Reprinted here with a critical introduction by Gene Andrew Jarrett, this book will challenge readers to rethink McKay’s articulation of identity, art, race, and politics and situate these topics in terms of his oeuvre and his literary contemporaries between the world wars.

Product Details

ISBN-13:
9780813539683
Publisher:
Rutgers University Press
Publication date:
02/28/2007
Series:
Multi-Ethnic Literatures of the Americas (MELA) Series
Edition description:
New Edition
Pages:
302
Product dimensions:
6.00(w) x 9.00(h) x (d)

Table of Contents

Introductionix
Part 1American Beginning
Chapter IA Great Editor3
Chapter IIOther Editors26
Chapter IIIWhite Friends35
Chapter IVAnother White Friend45
Part 2English Inning
Chapter VAdventuring in Search of George Bernard Shaw59
Chapter VIPugilist Vs. Poet66
Chapter VIIA Job in London73
Chapter VIIIRegarding Reactionary Criticism86
Part 3New York Horizon
Chapter IXBack in Harlem95
Chapter XA Brown Dove Cooing116
Chapter XIA Look at H. G. Wells121
Chapter XII"He Who Gets Slapped"130
Chapter XIII"Harlem Shadows"147
Part 4The Magic Pilgrimage
Chapter XIVThe Dominant Urge153
Chapter XVAn Individual Triumph167
Chapter XVIThe Pride and Pomp of Proletarian Power172
Chapter XVIILiterary Interest185
Chapter XVIIISocial Interest191
Chapter XIXA Great Celebration206
Chapter XXRegarding Radical Criticism226
Part 5The Cynical Continent
Chapter XXIBerlin and Paris237
Chapter XXIIFriends in France253
Chapter XXIIIFrank Harris in France265
Chapter XXIVCinema Studio272
Chapter XXVMarseilles Motley277
Part 6The Idylls of Africa
Chapter XXVIWhen a Negro Goes Native295
Chapter XXVIIThe New Negro in Paris306
Chapter XXVIIIHail and Farewell to Morocco324
Chapter XXIXOn Belonging to a Minority Group342

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A Long Way From Home 5 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 1 reviews.
Ausonius More than 1 year ago
"'And what are you?' the detective asked. 'Nothing, Sir,' I said with a big black grin'" (Ch. 7). The detective was British. The year was 1920. The city was London. The immediate setting was the newspaper office of Lydia Pankhurst's radical the Workers' Dreadnought. The young man with the big black grin was Jamaican-American poet Claude McKay. He recounts the incident in his 1937 autobiography, A LONG WAY FROM HOME. *** After years in the USA, studying in college and working, McKay had gone to England. He published there a book of verse, SPRING IN NEW HAMPSHIRE and hob-nobbed with important Brits, especially radical leftists. McKay's brief run-in with Scotland Yard came when he was writing for the Dreadnought. His boss, Ms Pankhurst, was arrested and did jail time for undermining the morale of the British Armed Forces. McKay was never detained by police in England. But "Pankhurst's arrest was the beginning of a drive against the Reds" (Ch. 7). *** On balance, Claude McKay's time in England was not happy. Critics were wary of love poetry written by a black man. To McKay, however, "the love poetry of a Negro might be in better taste than the gory poetry of a civilized British barbarian like Rudyard Kipling" (Ch. 8) *** Claude McKay built upon an older American literary genre, the life stories of runaway slaves and other American black folk reflecting on the 500-year old African diaspora. Although more simmering than boiling over with rage against white mistreatment of blacks everywhere but in the USSR, Spain, Marseilles and North Africa, McKay's autobiography records incident after incident of white cruelty or at best insensitivity to black self-consciousness and black men's desire to be proud of their race. "It is hell to belong to a suppressed minority and outcast group" (Ch. 29). *** McKay traveled far and wide and left incisive sketches of great men and women whom he encountered, from Leon Trotsky to George Bernard Shaw, critics Frank Harris and Max Eastman, to Isadora Duncan, W.E.B. DuBois, Walter White and other writers black and white. The narrative is nicely structured, selective of facts rather than exhaustive in detail. World War I, the Red Summer of 1919, the Spanish Civil War, the NAACP, the Harlem Renaissance and the New Negro and much more were all experienced and commented on by a shrewd, eloquent observer. Read A LONG WAY FROM HOME and receve a healthy dose of informal adult education. -OOO-