Speech and Power: The African-American Essay and Its Cultural Content, from Polemics to Pulpit



Speech and Power: The African-American Essay and Its Cultural Content, from Polemics to Pulpit

This edition

"Speech and Power: The African-American Essay and Its Cultural Content, from Polemics to Pulpit" . Ed. Gerald Early. 2 vols. Hopewell, NJ: Ecco, 1992-93.

Table of contents

Vol. 1 contents: -- Introduction: Gnostic or Gnomic? / Gerald Early -- pt. I. On Being Black -- On Being Black / W.E.B. Du Bois -- On Being Black / Eric D. Walrond -- Black Pride / Kimbal (Stroud) Goffman -- On Being Black: The Burden of Race and Class / Manning Marable -- Being Black and Feeling Blue: Black Hesitation on the Brink / Shelby Steele -- pt. II. Harlem, USA -- Hubert H. Harrison: Philosopher of Harlem / William Pickens -- The New Politics for the New Negro and A Negro for President / Hubert H. Harrison -- The New Negro Faces America and The Black City / Eric D. Walrond -- The Black and Tan Cabaret--America's Most Democratic Institution and Bobbed Hair / Chandler Owen -- The Making of Harlem / James Weldon Johnson -- Negro Life in New York's Harlem / Wallace Thurman -- Down Under in Harlem / Langston Hughes -- The Harlem Renaissance / Arna Bontemps -- The Harlem Ghetto / James Baldwin -- pt. III. On Being Subversive -- Why I Am a Communist / Benjamin J. Davis, Jr. -- My Adventures as a Social Poet / Langston Hughes -- The Negro and the Communists / Walter White -- pt. IV. The Numbers Runner -- The Numbers Writer: A Portrait / Julian Mayfield -- The Poor Pay More, Even for Their Dreams / Etheridge Knight -- pt. V. Boxing -- High Tide in Harlem: Joe Louis as a Symbol of Freedom / Richard Wright -- A Study of the Black Fighter / Nathan Hare -- In Defense of Cassius Clay / Floyd Patterson -- Black Heavies / Jervis Anderson -- Uncle Rufus Raps on the Squared Circle / Larry Neal -- The Black Intellectual and the Sport of Prizefighting / Gerald Early -- Bitter Sweet Twilight for Sugar / Ralph Wiley -- pt. VI. Portraits, Volume 1 -- Paul Laurence Dunbar and Susan B. Anthony, the Abolitionist / Mary Church Terrell -- Henry Ossawa Tanner / Jessie Redmon Fauset -- Madam C.J. Walker: Pioneer Big Business Woman of America / George S. Schuyler -- pt. VII. Portraits, Volume 2 -- Boy Meets King (Louis Armstrong) / Rex Stewart -- "Jelly Roll" Morton (1885?-1941): Portrait of a Jazz Giant / Sterling A. Brown -- The Charlie Christian Story / Ralph Ellison -- Restoring the Perspective: Robert Hayden's "The Dream" / Gayl Jones -- pt. VIII. Portraits, Volume 3 -- Ethel Waters / William Gardner Smith -- Richard Wright's Complexes and Black Writing Today / Cecil Brown -- Songs of a Racial Self: On Sterling A. Brown / Henry Louis Gates, Jr. -- Trickster Tales / Darryl Pinckney -- Novelist Alice Walker: Telling the Black Woman's Story / David Bradley -- pt. IX. Portraits, Volume 4 -- A. Philip Randolph / Bayard Rustin -- Cicely Tyson: Reflections on a Lone Black Rose / Maya Angelou -- Glamour Boy / Roi Ottley -- Acknowledgments.

Vol. 2 contents: -- Introduction: Dispersion, Dilation, Delation / Gerald Early -- Part I: The Arts, Blacks in the Arts, The Black American Artist and His Audience -- The comic side of trouble / Bert Williams -- The negro artist and modern art / Romare Bearden -- City plowman / Jean Toomer -- 'Gone With the Wind' is more dangerous than 'Birth of a Nation' / Melvin B. Tolson -- Art and life / N. Elizabeth Prophet -- Where are the films about real black men and women? / Ellen Holly -- Billie Holiday's 'Strange Fruit': Musical and social consciousness / Angela Y. Davis -- Who says black folks could sing and dance? Dance black America, Brooklyn Academy of Music, April 21-24, 1983 / Ntozake Shange -- What 'Jazz' means to me / Max Roach -- The ethos of the Blues / Larry Neal -- On Afro-American popular music: From bebop to rap / Cornel West -- The American negro's new comedy act / Louis E. Lomax -- Part II: The Black Writer -- The negro-art hokum / George S. Schuyler -- The negro artist and the racial mountain / Langston Hughes -- The dilemma of the negro author / James Weldon Johnson -- Negro poets and their poetry and Negro artists and the negro / Wallace Thurman -- Our literary audience / Sterling A. Brown -- The negro writer: Pitfalls and compensations / William Gardner Smith -- The negro writer and his roots: Toward a new Romanticism / Lorraine Hansberry -- Cultural strangulation: Black literature and the white aesthetic / Addison Gayle, Jr. -- Necessary distance: Afterthoughts on becoming a writer / Clarence Major -- On becoming an American writer / James Alan McPherson -- Philosophy and black fiction / Charles Johnson -- Black Critic / Haki R. Madhubuti -- Part III: Cultural and Political Essays -- The dark races of the twentieth century / Pauline E. Hopkins -- Self-determining Haiti / James Weldon Johnson -- The Virgin Islands and Senator Willis (Ohio) and the Virgin Islands, and Congress and the Virgin Islands / Casper Holstein -- Woman's most serious problem and The negro woman and the ballot / Alice Dunbar-Nelson -- Nordic education and the negro: A curse or a boon? (A personal reflection) / E. Frederick Morrow -- The mind of the American negro / E. Franklin Frazier -- The ebony flute / Gwendolyn Bennett -- The dark tower / Countee Cullen -- Once more the Germans face black troops / Claude McKay -- A reply to my critics / A. Philip Randolph -- Our white folks / George S. Schuyler -- Negroes without self-pity and The rise of the begging joints / Zora Neale Hurston -- Negro martyrs are needed / Chester B. Himes -- The black youth movement / J. Saunders Redding -- Challenge to negro leadership: The case of Robert Williams / Julian Mayfield -- The August 28th march on Washington: The castrated giant / Michael Thelwell -- Identity, diversity, and the mainstream / Albert Murray -- Inside these walls / Etheridge Knight -- Inside the sit-ins and freedom rides: Testimony of a southern student / Diane Nash -- "What Their Cry Means to Me": A negro's own evaluation / Gordon Parks -- Beauty is just care ... Like ugly is carelessness / Toni Cade Bambara -- The redevelopment of the dead black mind: The building of black extended family institutions / Haki R. Madhubuti -- Willie Horton and me / Anthony Walton -- Part IV: Africa and the American Black -- Impressions of the second Pan-African Congress / Jessie Redmon Fauset -- Africa and the American negro intelligentsia / W.E.B. Du Bois -- Tradition and industrialization: The historic meaning of the plight of the tragic elite in Asia and Africa / Richard Wright -- Sekou Toure: A new kind of leader / Hoyt Fuller -- Part V: Washington's Colored Aristocracy -- Negro life in Washington and Negro society in Washington / Paul Laurence Dunbar -- Our wonderful society: Washington / Langston Hughes -- I, too, have lived in Washington / Brenda Ray Moryck -- Part VI: Autobiography -- I / Brenda Ray Moryck -- So the girl marries / W.E.B. Du Bois -- Georgia sketches / Sterling A. Brown -- How I told my child about race / Gwendolyn Brooks -- How I told my child about race / Margaret Walker -- Turning the beat around: Lesbian parenting 1986 / Audrey Lorde -- The Ivy League negro / William Melvin Kelly -- Don't have a baby till you read this / Nikki Giovanni -- Bob's house ... An oasis of civility / William Demby -- A death in the family / Kenneth A. McClane -- Body and soul / Stanley Crouch -- Looking for Mr. Right / Terry McMillan.

Reviews and notices of anthology

• n/a

Commentary on anthology

• "In the more than nine hundred pages of this rich collection, the reader will find over a hundred essays by all the major writers of the 20th century and many lesser lights including Rex Stewart, Floyd Patterson, Bert Williams, Romare Bearden, N. Elizabeth Prophet, and Max Roach, good essayists all (even though their fame was achieved in music or boxing or comedy or art). As Early explains in the introduction to Volume 1 (itself an exemplary essay), racial consciousness is the common denominator of black essays, most of which are of the personal or polemical variety. But these parameters allow immense variety of approach and position, a fact which the inclusiveness of the collection demonstrates. The 19th and 21st centuries await definitive anthologies of the essay; the 20th century has "Speech and Power"" (Kinnamon 1997: 478).

Cited in

Kinnamon 1997: 478-79]

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