Collected Essays, Volume 2

Front Cover
Library of America, 1998 - Literary Collections - 869 pages
16 Reviews
Novelist, essayist, and public intellectual, James Baldwin was one of the most brilliant and provocative literary figures of the postwar era, and one of the greatest African-American writers of this century. A self-described "transatlantic commuter" who spent much of his life in France, Baldwin joined a cosmopolitan sophistication to a fierce engagement with social issues. Here are the complete texts of his early landmark collections, Notes of a Native Son (1955) and Nobody Knows My Name (1961), which established him as an essential intellectual voice of his time, fusing in unique fashion the personal, the literary, and the political. The classic The Fire Next Time (1963), perhaps the most influential of his writings, is his most penetrating analysis of America's racial divide, and an impassioned call to "end the racial nightmare ... and change the history of the world." The later volumes No Name in the Street (1972) and The Devil Finds Work (1976) chart his continuing response to the social and political turbulence of his era. A further thirty-six essaysnine of them previously uncollected - include some of Baldwin's earliest published writings, as well as revealing later insights into the language of Shakespeare, the poetry of Langston Hughes, and the music of Earl Hines.

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Read for the syle and substance of the Baldwin's prose. - Goodreads
The pictures he paints are raw and honest. - LibraryThing
His prose is unlike anything. - Goodreads
More than the plot, Baldwin's writing much be savored. - LibraryThing
The book that makes me want to be a writer. - Goodreads

Review: Collected Essays

User Review  - Matthew Baskerville - Goodreads

This extensive collection of Baldwin's essays is one I read as a Senior in High School and it is one that reshaped not only how I viewed the world, but how I viewed literature and how I viewed my own ... Read full review

Review: Collected Essays

User Review  - Mike - Goodreads

Absolutely required reading on race in America. Read full review


Notes of a Nat1ve
Everybodys Protest Novel
Many Thousands Gone

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About the author (1998)

James Baldwin was born on August 2, 1924, in New York. Baldwin's father was a pastor who subjected his children to poverty, abuse, and religious fanaticism. As a result, many of Baldwin's recurring themes, such as alienation and rejection, are attributable to his upbringing. Living the life of a starving artist, Baldwin went through numerous jobs, including dishwasher, office boy, factory worker, and waiter. In 1948, he moved to France, where much work originated. Baldwin published Go Tell It on the Mountain in 1953. A largely autobiographical work, it tells of the religious awakening of a fourteen-year-old. In addition to his childhood experiences, his experiences as a black man and a homosexual provided inspiration for such works as Giovanni's Room, Nobody Knows My Name, and Another Country. Baldwin holds a distinguished place in American history as one of the foremost writers of both black and gay literature. He was an active participant in the Civil Rights movement. Baldwin succumbed to cancer on December 1, 1987.

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