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This Child's Gonna Live
     

This Child's Gonna Live

by Sarah E. Wright
 

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“Sarah Wright’s triumph in this novel is a celebration of life over death. It is, in every respect, an impressive achievement.”—The New York Times, 1969

“Often compared to the work of Zora Neale Hurston, the novel was unusual in its exploration of the black experience from a woman’s perspective, anticipating fiction by

Overview

“Sarah Wright’s triumph in this novel is a celebration of life over death. It is, in every respect, an impressive achievement.”—The New York Times, 1969

“Often compared to the work of Zora Neale Hurston, the novel was unusual in its exploration of the black experience from a woman’s perspective, anticipating fiction by writers like Toni Morrison and Alice Walker.”—The New York Times, 2009

Originally published in 1969 to broad critical acclaim, This Child's Gonna Live is an unsurpassed testament to human endurance in the face of poverty, racism, and despair. Set in a fishing village on Maryland's Eastern Shore in the 1930s, this story has as its main character the unforgettable Mariah Upshur, a hard-working, sensual, resilient woman, full of hope, and determination despite living in a society that conspires to keep her down. In her mind, she carries on a conversation with Jesus, who, like Mariah herself, is passionate and compassionate, at times funny and resolutely resilient to fatalism. Often compared to Zora Neale Hurston for her lyrical and sure-handed use of local dialect, Wright, like Hurston, powerfully depicts the predicament of poor African American women, who confront the multiple oppressions of class, race, and gender.

Editorial Reviews

From the Publisher

“Sarah Wright’s triumph in this novel is a celebration of life over death. It is, in every respect, an impressive achievement.” —The New York Times, 1969

“Often compared to the work of Zora Neale Hurston, the novel was unusual in its exploration of the black experience from a woman’s perspective, anticipating fiction by writers like Toni Morrison and Alice Walker.” —The New York Times, 2009

"In every respect, an impressive achievement. The canon of American folk-epic is enriched by this small masterpiece." —New York Times Book Review

"It has always been my contention that the Black woman in America will write the greatest of the American novels. For it is the Black woman, forced to survive at the bottom rung of American society. . . who is compelled to survey, by the very extremity of her existence, the depths of the American soul. In reading Sarah Wright's searing novel, I am convinced that my assessment was correct." —Rosa Guy, author of The Friends

"This novel changed forever the way I saw the world in which I had grown up. In that sense it changed the way I thought and the way I wrote." —Adrienne Rich, author of Diving into the Wreck

"Saturated in harsh beauty, this book has been and still is for me one of the most important and indispensable books published in my lifetime. We have nothing else quite like it. . . . This is a touchstone book against which to test the lives of those who cannot speak for themselves." —Tillie Olsen, author of Silences

"Sarah Wright's searing yet lyrical rendition of a Southern black woman's life . . . is as compelling as her protagonist's insistence that This Child's Gonna Live. Wright's language is so true to the spoken word, her rhythms so authentic, readers may feel they are hearing her characters rather than meeting them on the printed page." —Barbara Christian, author of Black Women Novelists: The Development of a Tradition

Product Details

ISBN-13:
9781558617261
Publisher:
Feminist Press at CUNY, The
Publication date:
05/01/2002
Series:
Contemporary Classics by Women
Sold by:
Barnes & Noble
Format:
NOOK Book
Pages:
320
File size:
528 KB

Meet the Author

Novelist, poet, essayist and social activist, Sarah E. Wright (1928-2009) was born in the Village of Wetipquin, on the Eastern Shore of Jim Crow Maryland. She helped organize the First and the Second National Conference of Black Writers and the Congress of American Writers. She was the president of Pen&Brush, Inc., the oldest professional organization of women in the United States, and a member of the Harlem Writer's Guild, PEN, the Authors Guild, and the International Women's Writing Guild. Wright received numerous awards, including two MacDowell Colony fellowships for creative writing, the 1975 CAPS Award for Fiction, the 1976 Howard University Novelist-Poet Award, the Middle Atlantic Writers Association Award, and the Zora Neale Hurston Award.

Wright's first book, Give Me a Child, coauthored by Lucy Smith, is a collection of poetry designed to make poetry accessible to the general public. Her first novel, This Child's Gonna Live was chosen by the New York Times as one of 1969's most important books and by the Baltimore Sun for the 1969 Readability Award. Her third book, A. Philip Randolph: Integration in the Workplace, was chosen by the New York Public Library as one of the Best Books for Young Adults published in 1990.

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