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The Black box : writing the race  Cover Image Book Book

The Black box : writing the race / Henry Louis Gates, Jr.

Record details

  • ISBN: 9780593299784
  • ISBN: 0593299787
  • Physical Description: pages cm
  • Publisher: New York : Penguin Press, 2024.

Content descriptions

Bibliography, etc. Note:
Includes bibliographical references and index.
Formatted Contents Note:
The Black Box -- Writing Racism, Writing Resistance -- Naming Conventions : Self-Expression and Group Identity -- The Power and Politics of the Slave Narrative : Frederick Douglass -- The Politics of Dis-Respectability -- Literature versus Propaganda : The New Negro, the Harlem Renaissance, and the "True Art of a Race's Past" -- Modernism and Its Discontents : Du Bois, Hurston, and Wright -- Sell-Outs or Race Men : Narratives of Passing and Defining Blackness.
Summary, etc.:
"A magnificent, foundational reckoning with how Black Americans have used the written word to define and redefine themselves, in resistance to the lies of racism and often in heated disagreement with each other, over the course of the country's history. Distilled over many years from Henry Louis Gates, Jr.'s legendary Harvard introductory course in African American Studies, The Black Box: Writing the Race, is the story of Black self-definition in America through the prism of the writers who have led the way. From Phillis Wheatley and Frederick Douglass, W.E.B. Du Bois and Booker T. Washington, to Zora Neale Hurston and Richard Wright, James Baldwin and Toni Morrison--these writers used words to create a livable world--a "home"--for Black people destined to live out their lives in a bitterly racist society. It is a book grounded in the beautiful irony that a community formed legally and conceptually by its oppressors to justify brutal sub-human bondage, transformed itself through the word into a community whose foundational definition was based on overcoming one of history's most pernicious lies. This collective act of resistance and transcendence is at the heart of its self-definition as a "community." Out of that contested ground has flowered a resilient, creative, powerful, diverse culture formed by people who have often disagreed markedly about what it means to be "Black," and about how best to shape a usable past out of the materials at hand to call into being a more just and equitable future. This is the epic story of how, through essays and speeches, novels, plays, and poems, a long line of creative thinkers has unveiled the contours of--and resisted confinement in--the "black box" inside which this "nation within a nation" has been assigned, willy nilly, from the nation's founding through to today. This is a book that records the compelling saga of the creation of a people"-- Provided by publisher.
Subject: African Americans > Race identity > History.
African Americans > Intellectual life > History.
United States > Race relations > History.
African Americans in literature.
African Americans > Intellectual life.

Available copies

  • 10 of 13 copies available at Bibliomation.


  • 3 current holds with 13 total copies.
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Show Only Available Copies
Location Call Number / Copy Notes Barcode Shelving Location Status Due Date
Bethel Public Library NEW 908.996 GAT (Text) 34030155772210 Adult New Nonfiction Available -
Black Rock Branch - Bridgeport 908.996 GATES (Text) 34000151513090 Adult New Nonfiction Available -
Booth & Dimock Library - Coventry ANF 908.99 GAT (Text) 33260156652654 Adult New Available -
Douglas Library of Hebron 908.996 GAT (Text) 33400155491239 Adult New Nonfiction Available -
Easton Public Library 908.996 GATES, HENRY LOUIS (Text) 37777156582496 Adult New Nonfiction Available -
Hotchkiss Library - Sharon 908.996 Gat (Text) 33660143376434 Adult New Nonfiction Checked out 04/18/2024
Milford Public Library 908.996 G (Text) 34013150884214 Adult New Nonfiction Available -
Ridgefield Library 908.996 GAT (Text) 34010156460809 Adult New Nonfiction Available -
Seymour Public Library 908.996 GATES (Text) 34043155890528 Adult New Nonfiction Available -
Sherman Library 908.9 GAT (Text) 34060155907771 Adult New Nonfiction Available -

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