Afro-american Poetics: Revisions Of Harlem And The Black Aesthetic

Paperback | February 15, 1996

byHouston A. Baker

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When Houston A. Baker Jr. one of America’s foremost literary critics, first published Afro-American Poetics in 1988, it was hailed as a major revisionist history of both African American culture and criticism. Now available in paperback, this ambitious and enlightening book juxtaposes two of the most fertile periods of African American culture, the 1920s and the 1960s; it includes essays on Jean Toomer, Countee Cullen, Amiri Baraka, Larry Neal, and Hoyt Fuller. This is also Baker’s most personal book, an intellectual autobiography tracing his own beginnings as a scholar of Victorian literature, his “second birth” as he began teaching African American literature, and his visions and revisions of a black aesthetic.



From reviews of the hardcover edition:



“A stunning critical achievement. . . . Baker explores in fine and splendid detail the dialectic between self and other, rhetoric and representation, ‘high’ theory and the Black vernacular, to chart the evolution of Afro-American literary criticism since 1970.”—Henry Louis Gates Jr, Harvard University



“Baker’s is a fascinating portrait of the literary critic as blues artist, reconstructing the products of two amazingly fruitful decades of engagement with Afro-American expressive culture in illuminating autobiographical examinations of his own—and indeed, Afro-American criticism’s—momentous changes over that period of time.”—Michael Awkward, University of Michigan



“Readers who do not know much about black American literature would learn a great deal from Afro-American Poetics; those who do would be further enlightened.”—Peter Nazareth, World Literature Today



“For this student of black literature, the final impact of Afro-American Poetics is overwhelming.  We now have the beginnings of a superstructure upon which to gauge individual pieces of black literature.”—Eugene Kraft, Callaloo

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From Our Editors

Now available in paperback, this ambitious book juxtaposes two of the most fertile periods of African American culture, the 1920's and the 1960's; it includes essays on Jean Toomer, Countee Cullen, Amiri Baraka, Larry Neal, and Hoyt Fuller. This is also Baker's most personal book, tracing his beginnings as a scholar of Victorian litera...

From the Publisher

When Houston A. Baker Jr. one of America’s foremost literary critics, first published Afro-American Poetics in 1988, it was hailed as a major revisionist history of both African American culture and criticism. Now available in paperback, this ambitious and enlightening book juxtaposes two of the most fertile periods of African American...

Houston A. Baker, Jr., is professor of English, Albert M. Greenfield Professor of Human Relations, and director of the Center for the Study of Black Literature and Culture at the University of Pennsylvania. His many books of criticism include Modernism and the Harlem Renaissance and Blues, Ideology and Afro-American Literature, and he ...

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Format:PaperbackDimensions:212 pages, 9 × 6 × 0.5 inPublished:February 15, 1996Publisher:University Of Wisconsin Press

The following ISBNs are associated with this title:

ISBN - 10:0299115046

ISBN - 13:9780299115043

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From Our Editors

Now available in paperback, this ambitious book juxtaposes two of the most fertile periods of African American culture, the 1920's and the 1960's; it includes essays on Jean Toomer, Countee Cullen, Amiri Baraka, Larry Neal, and Hoyt Fuller. This is also Baker's most personal book, tracing his beginnings as a scholar of Victorian literature, his 'second birth' as he began teaching African American Literature, and his visions and revisions of a black aesthetic.

Editorial Reviews

Houston Baker on African American culture of the 1920s & 1960s