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Notes of a Native Son by James Baldwin


Notes of a Native Son by James Baldwin

'The story of the negro in America is the story of America ... it is not a very pretty story' James Baldwin's breakthrough essay collection made him the voice of his generation. Ranging over Harlem in the 1940s, movies, novels, his preacher father and his experiences of Paris, they capture the complexity of black life at the dawn of the civil rights movement with effervescent wit and prophetic wisdom. 'A classic ... In a divided America, James Baldwin's fiery critiques reverberate anew' Washington Post 'Edgy and provocative, entertainingly satirical' Robert McCrum, Guardian 'Cemented his reputation as a cultural seer ... Notes of a Native Son endures as his defining work, and his greatest' Time


A straight-from-the-shoulder writer, writing about the troubled problems of this troubled earth with an illuminating intensity that should influence for the better all who ponder on the things books say -- Langston Hughes * The New York Times * Edgy and provocative . . . entertainingly satirical -- Robert McCrum * Guardian * A classic . . . Take the words out of the 1950s, when they were published, and they could apply to the women in pink hats, the scientists, the Black Lives Matter activists, the climate-change believers and the LGBTQ-rights supporters who have flooded the streets of Washington this year * Washington Post *

About the Author

Born in Harlem in 1924, James Baldwin was a novelist, essayist, play-wright, poet, social critic, and the author of more than twenty books. His first novel, Go Tell It on the Mountain, appeared in 1953 to excellent reviews, and his essay col-lection The Fire Next Time was a bestseller that made him an influential figure in the civil rights movement. Baldwin spent many years in France, where he moved to escape the racism and homophobia of the United States. He died in 1987.

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Book Info

Publication date

2nd November 2017


James Baldwin

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Penguin Classics an imprint of Penguin Books Ltd


208 pages


Literary essays
Social discrimination & inequality



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