African American Literary Theory: A Reader

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Winston Napier
NYU Press, Jul 1, 2000 - Literary Criticism - 730 pages
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African American Literary Theory: A Reader is the first volume to document the central texts and arguments in African American literary theory from the 1920s through the present. As the volume progresses chronologically from the rise of a black aesthetic criticism, through the Blacks Arts Movement, feminism, structuralism and poststructuralism, and the rise of queer theory, it focuses on the key arguments, themes, and debates in each period.

By constantly bringing attention to the larger political and cultural issues at stake in the interpretation of literary texts, the critics gathered here have contributed mightily to the prominence and popularity of African American literature in this country and abroad. African American Literary Theory provides a unique historical analysis of how these thinkers have shaped literary theory, and literature at large, and will be a indispensable text for the study of African American intellectual culture.

Contributors include Sandra Adell, Michael Awkward, Houston A. Baker, Jr., Hazel V. Carby, Barbara Christian, W.E.B. DuBois, Ann duCille, Ralph Ellison, Henry Louis Gates, Jr., Addison Gayle Jr., Carolyn F. Gerald, Evelynn Hammonds, Phillip Brian Harper, Mae Gwendolyn Henderson, Stephen E. Henderson, Karla F.C. Holloway, Langston Hughes, Zora Neale Hurston, LeRoi Jones (Amiri Baraka), Joyce A. Joyce, Alain Locke, Wahneema Lubiano, Deborah E. McDowell, Harryette Mullen, Larry Neal, Charles I. Nero, Robert F. Reid-Pharr, Marlon B. Ross, George S. Schuyler, Barbara Smith, Valerie Smith, Hortense J. Spillers, Sherley Anne Williams, and Richard Wright.

 

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Contents

Criteria of Negro Art
17
The NegroArt Hokum
24
Characteristics of Negro Expression
31
Blueprint for Negro Writing
45
What White Publishers Wont Print
54
Brave Words for a Startling Occasion
66
The Black Writer and His Role
81
Some Reflections on the Black Aesthetic
89
A Theory
339
Woman Writers Literary Tradition
348
Black Feminist Theory and the Representation of
369
A Theory of Literary
387
Signifying
399
Theoretical Returns
421
Toward Engendering
443
Nationalism and Social Division in Black Arts Poetry
460

A Word on Black Words
97
One View
113
Toward a Black Feminist Criticism
132
Text and Pretext
147
New Directions for Black Feminist Criticism
167
Generational Shifts and the Recent Criticism
179
Some Implications of Womanist Theory
218
Notes for a PostStructuralist
224
Rethinking Black Feminist Theory
242
An American Grammar
257
The Race for Theory
280
Reconstructing Black American Literary
290
Critical Theory
298
In Dubious Battle
313
Unconsciousness
319
Theory and AfroAmerican
331
The Problems with Silence and Exclusiveness in
475
Black Wholes and the Geometry of Black Female
482
Race SameSex Desire
498
A Black Mans Place in Black Feminist Criticism
540
The Practice of Theory
557
All the Things You Could Be by Now If Sigmund Freuds
580
Homosexuality Abjection
602
A7 African Signs and Spirit Writing
623
Mapping the Interstices between AfroAmerican Cultural
643
African American
653
The W E B Du Bois Lectures
660
Suggested Readings since the 1970s for African American
673
Contributors
691
Permissions
697
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About the author (2000)

Winston Napier is E. Franklin Frazier Assistant Professor of African American Literature and Critical Theory at Clark University in Worcester, MA.

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