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.
the fire next time
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The landmark work on race in America from James Baldwin, whose life and words are immortalized in the Oscar-nominated film I Am Not Your Negro 'We, the black and the white, deeply need each other here if we are really to become a nation' James Baldwin's impassioned plea to 'end the racial nightmare' in America was a bestseller when it appeared in 1963, galvanising a nation and giving voice to the emerging civil rights movement. Told in the form of two intensely personal 'letters', The Fire Next Time is at once a powerful evocation of Baldwin's early life in Harlem and an excoriating condemnation of the terrible legacy of racial injustice. 'Sermon, ultimatum, confession, deposition, testament, and chronicle ... all presented in searing, brilliant prose' The New York Times Book Review 'Baldwin writes with great passion ... it reeks of truth, as the ghettoes of New York and London, Chicago and Manchester reek of our hypocrisy' Sunday Times 'The great poet-prophet of the civil rights movement ... his seminal work' Guardian
A surprise New York Times bestseller, these groundbreaking essays and poems about race—collected by National Book Award winner Jesmyn Ward and written by the most important voices of her generation—are “thoughtful, searing, and at times, hopeful. The Fire This Time is vivid proof that words are important, because of their power to both cleanse and to clarify” (USA TODAY). In this bestselling, widely lauded collection, Jesmyn Ward gathers our most original thinkers and writers to speak on contemporary racism and race, including Carol Anderson, Jericho Brown, Edwidge Danticat, Kevin Young, Claudia Rankine, and Honoree Jeffers. “An absolutely indispensable anthology” (Booklist, starred review), The Fire This Time shines a light on the darkest corners of our history, wrestles with our current predicament, and imagines a better future. Envisioned as a response to The Fire Next Time, James Baldwin’s groundbreaking 1963 essay collection, these contemporary writers reflect on the past, present, and future of race in America. We’ve made significant progress in the fifty-odd years since Baldwin’s essays were published, but America is a long and painful distance away from a “post-racial society”—a truth we must confront if we are to continue to work towards change. Baldwin’s “fire next time” is now upon us, and it needs to be talked about; The Fire This Time “seeks to place the shock of our own times into historical context and, most importantly, to move these times forward” (Vogue).
A collection of essays presenting critiques and analysis of the major works of the African American author.
The Harlem-born son of a storefront preacher, James Baldwin died almost thirty years ago, but his spirit lives on in the eloquent and still-relevant musings of his novels, short stories, essays, and poems. What concerned him most—as a black man, as a gay man, as an American—were notions of isolation and disconnection at both the individual and communal level and a conviction that only in the transformative power of love could humanity find any hope of healing its spiritual and social wounds. In Understanding James Baldwin, Marc K. Dudley shows that a proper grasp of Baldwin’s work begins with a grasp of the times in which he wrote. During a career spanning the civil rights movement and beyond, Baldwin stood at the heart of intellectual and political debate, writing about race, sexual identity, and gendered politics, while traveling the world to promote dialogue on those issues. In surveying the writer’s life, Dudley traces the shift in Baldwin’s aspirations from occupying the pulpit like his stepfather to becoming a writer amid the turmoil of sexual self-discovery and the harsh realities of American racism and homophobia. The book’s analyses of key works in the Baldwin canon—among them, Go Tell It on the Mountain, Giovanni’s Room, “Sonny’s Blues,” Another Country, The Fire Next Time, and The Devil Finds Work—demonstrate the consistency, contrary to some critics’ claims, of Baldwin’s vision and thematic concerns. As police violence against people of color, a resurgence in white supremacist rhetoric, and pushback against LGBTQ rights fill today’s headlines, James Baldwin’s powerful and often-angry words find a new resonance. From early on, Baldwin decried the damning potential of alienation and the persistent bigotry that feeds it. Yet, even as it sometimes wavered, his hope for both the individual and the nation remained intact. In the present historical moment, James Baldwin matters more than ever.
This reader collects sixty of the personal essays, critical articles, and other seminal works of Addison Gayle Jr., one of the most influential figures in African American literary criticism and a key pioneer in the Black Arts/Black Aesthetic Movement. The volume contains selective essays that represent the range of Gayle's writing on such subjects as relationships between father and son, cultural nationalism, racism, black aesthetics, black criticism, and black literature. The collection, the first of its kind, includes definitive essays such as "Blueprint for Black Criticism," "The Harlem Renaissance: Toward a Black Aesthetic," and "Cultural Strangulation: Black Literature and the White Aesthetics."
This is a horrific tale told through three sets of miserable people. Jimmy is abandoned at birth by his ambitious physicist mother to a childless working class Chicago couple. He grows and is recognized as a savant, questioning the given dogma of the 60's and being scorned by liberals. He will meet a VA nurse named Nori after being wounded in Vietnam, go to college, graduate during the 1973-74 oil embargo, find a dead-end clerical job at Lancaster Advertising and experience ridicule by Nori for not making a decent salary after they marry and have a son. Heather Lancaster, the daughter of the CEO, is the attractive control freak vixen who sets her sights on Jimmy after he rescues her from an armed disgruntled in-law at work. After a sham divorce that nets Nori a lot of money, Jimmy fakes it with Heather in order for his real family to leave a bad neighborhood. In the end the Satan's strike America and Israel, dirty nukes are discharged in cities, Jimmy flees his convenience and hooks up with his real wife. They repent their sins before American cities are hit with powerful nukes.
Why did Black-Korean tensions result in violent clashes in Los Angeles but not in New York City? In a book based on fieldwork and on a nationwide database he constructed to track such conflicts, Patrick D. Joyce goes beyond sociological and cultural explanations. No Fire Next Time shows how political practices and urban institutions can channel racial and ethnic tensions into protest or, alternately, leave them free to erupt violently. Few encounters demonstrate this connection better than those between African Americans and Korean Americans. Cities like New York, where politics is noisy, contentious, and involves people at the grassroots, have seen extensive Black boycotts of Korean-owned businesses (usually small grocery stores). African Americans in Los Angeles have sustained few long-term boycotts of Korean American businesses—but the absence of "routine" contention there goes hand in hand with the large-scale riots of 1992 and continuous acts of individual violence. In demonstrating how conflicts between these groups were intimately tied to their political surroundings, this book yields practical lessons for the future. City governments can do little to fight widening economic inequality in an increasingly diverse nation, Joyce writes. But officials and activists can restructure political institutions to provide the foundations for new multiracial coalitions.
A comprehensive compilation of Baldwin's previously published, nonfiction writings encompasses essays on America's racial divide, the social and political turbulence of his time, and his insights into the poetry of Langston Hughes and the music of Earl Hines.