Popo and Fifina

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Oxford University Press, 1932 - Blacks - 110 pages
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This collaboration between Harlem Renaissance writers Arna Bontemps and Langston Hughes is an early African-Aamerican classic and a milestone in the history of literature for children. In this novel for young people, Popo and Fifina leave their home in the hills of Haiti to move with their parents to a town by the sea. The next few months are full of adventures--adjusting to a new home, a trip back to the hills for a visit, Popo's work as a carpenter's apprentice, the children's fun with a wondrous kits made by their father, and even a trip to the lighthouse at the end of the island and an amazing tropical storm. When Popo and Fifina was first published in 1932, it was greeted with universal approval. The New York Times praised its "simple home-like atmosphere" and suggested that all children's books "should be written by poets." It has been a favorite among children, parents, and teachers for more than two decades, and now this new edition introduces its magic to a new generation.

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Review: Popo and Fifina

User Review  - Gretchen - Goodreads

pretty simple, but elegant language. good introduction to another culture's norms. Read full review

Contents

Going to Town
1
Work to Do
7
Running Water
16
Copyright

11 other sections not shown

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About the author (1932)

Arna Bontemps was one of many African American writers associated with Fisk University, where he taught for 20 years. He became a visiting professorship at Yale University and returned to Fisk to spend the last years of his life there. Bontemps grew up in the South and wrote of the condition and spirit of the southern black in memoirs and in fiction. His historical and topical novel Black Thunder (1936) is perhaps his best known, along with Drums at Dusk (1935). As an active leader in the Harlem Renaissance, however, Bontemps wrote prolifically in all genres and for children as well as adults. He produced several important collections of narratives about enslaved people and African American folk tales. Bontemps was a major anthologizer of Harlem Renaissance work and helped shape the new black writing as theoretician and critic. Bontemps died in 1973.

Langston Hughes, February 1, 1902 - May 22, 1967 Langston Hughes, one of the foremost black writers to emerge from the Harlem Renaissance, was born on February 1, 1902, in Joplin, Mo. Hughes briefly attended Columbia University before working numerous jobs including busboy, cook, and steward. While working as a busboy, he showed his poems to American poet Vachel Lindsay, who helped launch his career. He soon obtained a scholarship to Lincoln University and had several works published. Hughes is noted for his depictions of the black experience. In addition to the black dialect, he incorporated the rhythms of jazz and the blues into his poetry. While many recognized his talent, many blacks disapproved of his unflattering portrayal of black life. His numerous published volumes include, "The Weary Blues," "Fine Clothes to the Jew," and "Montage of a Dream Deferred." Hughes earned several awards during his lifetime including: a Guggenheim fellowship, an American Academy of Arts and Letters Grant, and a Spingarn Medal from the NAACP. Langston Hughes died of heart failure on May 22, 1967.

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