Hokum: An Anthology of African-American Humor

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Bloomsbury Publishing USA, Dec 10, 2008 - Humor - 480 pages
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Edited by the author of The Sellout, winner of the 2016 Man Booker Prize, Hokum is a liberating, eccentric, savagely comic anthology of the funniest writing by black Americans.

This book is less a comprehensive collection than it is a mix-tape narrative dubbed by a trusted friend-a sampler of underground classics, rare grooves, and timeless summer jams, poetry and prose juxtaposed with the blues, hip-hop, political speeches, and the world's funniest radio sermon. The subtle musings of Toni Cade Bambara, Henry Dumas, and Harryette Mullen are bracketed by the profane and often loud ruminations of Langston Hughes, Darius James, Wanda Coleman, Tish Benson, Steve Cannon, and Hattie Gossett. Some of the funniest writers don't write, so included are selections from well-known yet unpublished wits Lightnin' Hopkins, Mike Tyson, and the Reverend Al Sharpton. Selections also come from public figures and authors whose humor, although incisive and profound, is often overlooked: Malcolm X, Suzan-Lori Parks, Zora Neale Hurston, Sojourner Truth, and W.E.B. Dubois. Groundbreaking, fierce, and hilarious, this is a necessary anthology for any fan or student of American writing, with a huge range and a smart, political grasp of the uses of humor.
 

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Hokum: An Anthology of African-American Humor

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Langston Hughes, Al Sharpton, Zora Neale Hurston, Sojourner Truth, and many other writers and public figures appear together in this comic collection of poetry, political speeches, and even a radio sermon selected by novelist/poet Beatty. Read full review

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D BOOK IS BOUT SOME FUNNY ASS NIGGAS AND DERE LIFE ADVENTURES LIKE AIDS BLOWJOB THERESOMES COCAINE GRAPE DRANK WATERMELON ANDY RICHTER AND SO MANY HOES.

Contents

Introduction
1
Sojourner TruthAnd ant I a Woman? 1851
17
Chester HimesLet Me at the Enemy
23
Malcolm XMessage to the Grass Roots 1963
37
Lightnin HopkinsCadillac Blues performed 1968
43
Sam Greenleefrom Tlie Spook Who Sat by the Door 1969
60
Wanda ColemanApril 15th 1985 c 1985
71
Amiri BarakaWise 1 1995
82
Patricia SmithBoy Sneezes Head Explodes 1991
240
Darius JamesLiF Black Zambo from Negrophobia 1992
242
Hilton AlsThe Only One 1994
251
John FarrisIn the Park After School with the Girl the Boy 1994
262
Elizabeth AlexanderTalk Radio D C 1996
283
Colson Whiteheadfrom John Henry Days 2001
289
Willie PerdomoShould Old Shit Be Forgot 2003
295
Zora Neale HurstonBook of Harlem c 1921
301

Al SharptonPresidential campaign speech delivered
92
Mike TysonThe Wit and Wisdom of Mike Tyson 19872004
98
Paul Laurence DunbarWhen De Con Pones Hot 1895
107
Rudolph FisherThe City of Refuge 1925
115
Zora Neale HurstonThe Bone of Contention c 1929
130
George Schuylerfrom Black No More 1931
140
James Weldon JohnsonBrer Rabbit Yous de Cutes
156
Gwendolyn Brooksat the hairdressers 1945
166
Henry DumasDouble Nigger 1965
173
Ishmael Reedfrom Yellow Back Radio BrokeDown 1969
184
Toni Cade BambaraThe Lesson 1972
191
I Sing of Shine 1973
199
Spike Leefrom Do the Right Thing 1989
224
Ralph Ellisonfrom Invisible Man 1952
310
Bob KaufmanAbomunist Manifesto 1965
321
Steve Cannonfrom Groove Bang and Jive Around 1969
332
Fran Rossfrom Oreo 1974
360
Franklyn AjayeBe Black Brother Be Black
378
Harryette MullenAny Lit 1991
395
SuzanLori ParksDevotees in the Garden of Love 1991
406
Willie PerdomoNiggerReecan Blues 1996
427
John RodriguezHow to Be a Street Poet 1999
440
Prophet OmegaI Am What I Am date unknown
453
Acknowledgments
463
Copyright

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About the author (2008)

Paul Beatty is author of four novels, Slumberland, Tuff, The White Boy Shuffle, and The Sellout, which won the 2016 Man Booker Prize. He has also written two books of poetry: Big Bank Take Little Bank and Joker, Joker, Deuce. He lives in New York City.

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