Black Voices


“If you don’t know my name, you don’t know your own.”—James Baldwin
Featuring fiction, poetry, autobiography, and literary criticism, Black Voices captures the diverse and powerful words of a literary explosion, the ramifications of which can be seen and heard in the works of today’s African-American...

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“If you don’t know my name, you don’t know your own.”—James Baldwin
Featuring fiction, poetry, autobiography, and literary criticism, Black Voices captures the diverse and powerful words of a literary explosion, the ramifications of which can be seen and heard in the works of today’s African-American artists. A comprehensive and impressive primer, this anthology presents some of the greatest and most enduring work born out of the African-American experience in the United States.
Contributors Include:
Sterling A. Brown
Charles W. Chesnutt
John Henrik Clarke
Countee Cullen
Frederick Douglass
Paul Laurence Dunbar
James Weldon Johnson
Naomi Long Madgett
Paule Marshall
Clarence Major
Claude McKay
Ann Petry
Dudley Randall
J. Saunders Redding
Jean Toomer
Darwin T. Turner

As well as:
Lerone Bennett, Jr.
Frank London Brown
Arthur P. Davis
Frank Marshall Davis
Owen Dodson
Mari Evans
Rudolph Fisher
Dan Georgakas
Robert Hayden
Frank Horne
Blyden Jackson
Lance Jeffers
Fenton Johnson
George E. Kent
Alain Locke
Diane Oliver
Stanley Sanders
Richard G. Stern
Sterling Stuckey
Melvin B. Tolson

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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780451527820
  • Publisher: Penguin Publishing Group
  • Publication date: 4/10/2001
  • Series: Signet Classics Series
  • Format: Mass Market Paperback
  • Edition description: Reissue
  • Pages: 816
  • Sales rank: 445,638
  • Product dimensions: 4.19 (w) x 6.75 (h) x 1.26 (d)

Meet the Author

About the Editor
Abraham Chapman was professor of English and Chairman of the American Literature survey courses at Wisconsin State University–Stevens Point. His writings include critical studies on American literature of the nineteenth and twentieth centuries and book reviews for various leading periodicals. He was the author of The Negro in American Literature. In 1968, Professor Chapman received the Biennial College Language Association Creative Scholarship Award for his study The Harlem Renaissance in Literary History, published in CLA Journal.

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Table of Contents


I. Fiction

Charles W. Chestnutt
Baxter's Procrustes

Jean Toomer
Blood-Burning Moon

Rudolph Fisher
Common Meter

Arna Bontemps
A Summer Tragedy

Langston Hughes
Tales of Simple:
Foreword: Who Is Simple?
Feet Live Their Own Life
Coffee Break
Cracker Prayer

Richard Wright
The Man Who Lived Underground

Ann Petry
In Darkness and Confusion

Ralph Ellison
Invisible Man (Prologue

Frank London Brown

Paule Marshall
To Da-duh, In Memoriam

Diane Oliver

II. Autobiography

Frederick Douglass
Narrative of the Life of Frederick Douglass, An American Slave (Chapters 1, 6, 7, and 10)

James Weldon Johnson
Along This Way (Selected Episodes)

Richard Wright
The Ethics of Living Jim Crow

J. Saunders Redding
No Day of Triumph (Chapter 1: Sections 1, 5, and 7)

James Baldwin
Autobiographical Notes

Arna Bontemps
Why I Returned

Malcolm X
The Autobiography of Malcolm X (Chapter 1)

Stnaley Sanders
"I'll Never Escape the Ghetto"

III. Poetry

Paul Laurence Dunbar
We Wear the Mask
A Death Song
A Negro Love Song

W. E. B. Du Bois
The Song of the Smoke
A Litany at Atlanta

James Weldon Johnson
The Creation

Fenton Johnson
The Daily Grind
The World Is a Mighty Ogre
A Negro Peddler's Song
The Old Repair Man
The Scarlet Woman
Aunt Jane Allen

Claude McKay
If We Must Die
The Negro's Tragedy
The White City
The White House

Jean Toomer
Harvest Song
Song of the Son
Cotton Song
Brown River, Smile

Countee Cullen
Yet Do I Marvel
A Song of Praise
A Brown Girl Dead
From the Dark Tower
Scottsboro, Too, Is Worth Its Song
Three Epitaphs:
For My Grandmother
For Paul Laurence Dunbar
For a Lady I Know

Melvin B. Tolson
An Ex-Judge at the Bar
Dark Symphony

Frank Horne
Kid Stuff
Nigger: A Chant for Children

Sterling A. Brown
Sister Lou
Memphis Blues
Slim in Hell
Remembering Nat Turner
Southern Road
Southern Cop
The Young Ones
The Ballad of Joe Meek
Strong Men

Arna Bontemps
A Note of Humility
Southern Mansion
My Heart Has Known Its Winter
Nocturne at Bethesda
A Black Man Talks of Reaping
The Day-Breakers

Langston Hughes
Afro-American Fragment
As I Grew Older
Dream Variations
Daybreak in Alabama
Dream Boogie
Children's Rhymes
Theme for English B
Same in Blues
Ballad of the Landlord

Frank Marshall Davis
Four Glimpses of Night
I Sing No New Songs
Robert Whitmore
Flowers of Darkness

Richard Wright
Between the World and Me

Robert Hayden
Tour 5
On the Coast of Maine
In Light Half Nightmare and Half Vision
Homage to the Empress of the Blues
Mourning Poem for the Queen of Sunday
Middle Passage
Frederick Douglass

Owen Dodson
Black Mother Praying
Drunken Lover
The Reunion
Jonathan's Song
Yardbird's Skull
Sailors on Leave

Margaret Walker
For My People

Gwendolyn Brooks
The Artist's and Models' Ball
The Mother
The Preacher: Ruminates Behind the Sermon
The Children of the Poor
We Real Cool
The Chicago Defender Sends a Man to Little Rock

Dudley Randall
The Southern Road
Legacy: My South
Booker T. and W. E. B.
The Idiot

Lerone Bennett, Jr.
Blues and Bitterness

Lance Jeffers
The Night Rains Hot Tar
On Listening to the Spirituals
Grief Streams Down My Chest
The Unknown

Naomi Long Madgett
Her Story
Race Question

Mari Evans
Status Symbol
The Emancipation of George-Hector (a colored turtle)
My Man Let Me Pull Your Coat
Black Jam for Dr. Negro

Leroi Jones
Preface to a Twenty Volume Suicide Note
The Invention of Comics
Look for You Yesterday, Here You Come Today
The Death of Nick Charles
The Bridge

IV. Literary Criticism

W. E. B. Du Bois
The Souls of Black Folk (Chapters 1 and 14)

Alain Locke
The New Negro
The Negro in American Culture

Richard Wright
How "Bigger" Was Born

Sterling A. Brown
A Century of Negro Portraiture in American Literature

James Baldwin
Many Thousands Gone

Three Papers from the First Conference of Negro Writers (March, 1959)
1. Arthur P. Davis: Integration and Race Literature
2. J. Saunders Redding: The Negro Writer and His Relationship to His Roots
3. Langston Hughes: Writers: Black and White

Blyden Jackson
The Negro's Image of the Universe as Reflected in His Fiction

John Henrik Clarke
The Origin and Growth of Afro-American Literature

Richard G. Stern
That Same Pain, That Same Pleasure: An Interview with Ralph Ellison

Dan Georgakas
James Conversation

Sterling Stuckey
Frank London Brown

Darwin T. Turner
The Negro Dramatist's Image of the Universe, 1920-1960

George E. Kent
Ethnic Impact in American Literature

Clarence Major
Black Criterion


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