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Dark Symphony: Negro Literature in America


reviewed by Robert Bone 1969

coverTitle: Dark Symphony: Negro Literature in America
Author(s): James Emmanuel, Theodore Gross, Eds.
Publisher: John Wiley, New York
ISBN: , Pages: , Year:
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Sensibility, or the quality of independent judgment, is the prime virtue of an anthologist, just as his cardinal sin is a tendency to cannibalize his predecessors. In the long line of anthologies of Afro-American literature, we have seen more than enough of the latter tendency. It is refreshing to encounter two collections that are marked by boldness and originality, as well as a responsible sense of literary worth. The Chapman book is organized by genre. There are four sections, devoted respectively to fiction, autobiography, poetry, and literary criticism. The sequence is curious, given the editor's comment in his introduction: "The real achievements in imaginative writing follow an initial period of expository, autobiographical, religious, and political writing." Perhaps Professor Chapman violates the historical progression in the interests of a fast take-off. Perhaps, too, the category of literary criticism is unnecessarily restrictive of the full range of black expository writing. The selections in the... (preview truncated at 150 words.)


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Cite This Article as: Teachers College Record Volume 70 Number 8, 1969, p. 791-794
http://www.tcrecord.org ID Number: 1911, Date Accessed: 12/14/2017 3:05:33 AM

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