The Fire Next Time

Front Cover
Vintage International, 1993 - History - 106 pages
A national bestseller when it first appeared in 1963, The Fire Next Time galvanized the nation and gave passionate voice to the emerging civil rights movement. At once a powerful evocation of James Baldwin's early life in Harlem and a disturbing examination of the consequences of racial injustice, the book is an intensely personal and provocative document. It consists of two "letters," written on the occasion of the centennial of the Emancipation Proclamation, that exhort Americans, both black and white, to attack the terrible legacy of racism. Described by The New York Times Book Review as "sermon, ultimatum, confession, deposition, testament, and chronicle...all presented in searing, brilliant prose," The Fire Next Time stands as a classic of our literature.

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User Review  - dono421846 -

Picked this up to read because of the furor at Augsburg University, which suspended an honors professor for teaching this book and reading aloud the passage (on page 4) that uses the "n" word ... Read full review

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User Review  - jonfaith -

It is an unfair task to qualify a book I read 20 years ago and haven't thought about a great deal since. I do recall the meeting Elijah Muhammad and Baldwin's concerns about extremism undercutting humanism. Otherwise the text has been reduced in Kafka's terms to a snowy field of confusion. Read full review

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About the author (1993)

The Modern Library has played a significant role in American cultural life for the better part of a century. The series was founded in 1917 by the publishers Boni and Liveright and eight years later acquired by Bennett Cerf and Donald Klopfer. It provided the foundation for their next publishing venture, Random House. The Modern Library has been a staple of the American book trade, providing readers with affordable hardbound editions of important works of literature and thought. For the Modern Library's seventy-fifth anniversary, Random House redesigned the series, restoring as its emblem the running torch-bearer created by Lucian Bernhard in 1925 and refurbishing jackets, bindings, and type, as well as inaugurating a new program of selecting titles. The Modern Library continues to provide the world's best books, at the best prices.

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