John Henry Roark Bradfords Novel and Play

Hardcover | October 23, 2008

EditorSeven C Tracy

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Roark Bradford's 1931 novel and 1939 play dealing with the legendary folk-hero John Henry (both titled John Henry) were extremely influential in their own time but have long been unavailable or extremely hard to find. In this unique collection, Steven C.Tracy has joined Bradford's seminalworks in a new critical edition to help contextualize both the novel and play, making these vital texts widely available again for scholars of folklore and African American literature. This new volume includes an expansive introduction that explores Bradford's life and work, critical responses to the novel and play, and a survey of John Henry's pervasive influence in folk, literary, and popular culture. It also features a wide array of supplementary materials, including aselected bibliography and discography related to Bradford and John Henry; transcriptions of a number of folksong texts and recordings available during the 1930s; and a chronology of the lives of both Bradford and Henry. As Tracy's introduction makes clear, such a consideration of Bradford--set inthe context of writers, both black and white, drawing upon African American folklore and using dialects along with stereotypical and non-stereotypical portrayals--is long overdue. In pairing Bradford's two treatments of the quintessentially American story of John Henry, Tracy has provided the definitive edition of two classic American texts, and in so doing, he provides a welcome opportunity to reflect on the various paths by which African American traditions haveinfiltrated the cultural mainstream.

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Roark Bradford's 1931 novel and 1939 play dealing with the legendary folk-hero John Henry (both titled John Henry) were extremely influential in their own time but have long been unavailable or extremely hard to find. In this unique collection, Steven C.Tracy has joined Bradford's seminalworks in a new critical edition to help contextu...

Steven C. Tracy is Professor of Afro-American Studies at University of Massachusetts at Amherst and editor of A Historical Guide to Ralph Ellison and A Historical Guide to Langston Hughes (OUP 2003 and 2004).

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Format:HardcoverDimensions:240 pages, 9.25 × 6.13 × 0.98 inPublished:October 23, 2008Publisher:Oxford University PressLanguage:English

The following ISBNs are associated with this title:

ISBN - 10:0195371046

ISBN - 13:9780195371048

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Table of Contents

IntroductionBibliography for introductionDiscography of recordings echoing the folk tradition in the novelTranscriptions of versions of the folk songsJohn Henry folk song bibliographyJohn Henry bibliography, 1932-PresentJohn Henry folk song discography, 1921-1931Roark Bradford BibliographyReviews of the novelReviews of the playRoark Bradford ChronologyJohn Henry: the novel _I. The Birth of John HenryII. CoonjineIII. The Black River CountryIVVVI. Back of TownVII. Julie AnneVIII. Fourteen-Thirty-SixIX. Woman on My Weary MindX. Poor SelmaXI. Stacker LeeXII. The Poor Selma "Gris Gris"XIII. Man's Ever BurdenXIV. Hand in HandXV. Shoulder Your Load and Walk John Henry's PathwayXVI. John Henry's PathwayXVII. Ring, Steel, RingXVIII. Down the RoadXIX. The Way with WomenXX. Doing for His WomanXXI. The How Long SongXXII. No Rest for the Weary BurdenXXIII. Lord, My BurdenXXIV. John Henry Lays His Burden DownXXV. John Henry's Last Go RoundJohn Henry: A PlayAct One, Scene OneAct One, Scene TwoAct One, Scene ThreeAct Two, Scene OneAct Two, Scene TwoAct Three, Scene OneAct Three, Scene Two