James Weldon Johnson's Modern Soundscapes

James Weldon Johnson's Modern Soundscapes

by Noelle Morrissette

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Overview

James Weldon Johnson's Modern Soundscapes by Noelle Morrissette

In this groundbreaking work, literary critic Noelle Morrissette provides an evocative and meticulously researched study of one of the best known and yet least understood authors of the New Negro Renaissance era. Drawing on archival materials such as early manuscript notes and drafts of Johnson's unpublished and published work, Morrissette explores the author's complex aesthetic of sound, based on black expressive culture and cosmopolitan interracial experiences. The result is an innovative new interpretation of the works of one of the early twentieth century's most important and controversial writers and civil rights leaders.

Product Details

ISBN-13: 9781609381585
Publisher: University of Iowa Press
Publication date: 05/01/2013
Edition description: 1
Pages: 244
Product dimensions: 5.90(w) x 8.90(h) x 0.80(d)

Table of Contents

Acknowledgments xi

Introduction: The Ragtime Reinventions of James Weldon (William) Johnson 1

1 Biography of the Race: Musical Comedy and the Modern Soundscape of The Autobiography of an Ex-Colored Man 33

2 Cultures of Talk: Diplomacy, Nation, and Race in The Autobiography of an Ex-Colored Man 65

3 The Interpolated Body: Passing, Same-Sex Talk, and Discursive Formations in The Autobiography of an Ex-Colored Man 83

4 Cosmopolitan Travels: Diplomacy, Translation, and Performance in The Autobiography of an Ex-Colored Man (Der weisse Neger, 1928) and God's Trombones 96

5 Framing Black Expressive Culture: Prefaces to The Book of American Negro Poetry, The Book of American Negro Spirituals, and God's Trombones 116

6 "The Creation": God's Trombones and Johnson's Formation of a Black Modernist Poetics 138

7 From Noun to Verb: Black Phonographic Voice in Black Manhattan 150

8 Not the Story of My Life: Along This Way 167

Afterword: Remembering James Weldon Johnson 185

Notes 207

Bibliography 227

Index 237

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