Essays exploring contemporary black fiction and examining important issues in current African American literary studies.
In this volume, Lovalerie King and Shirley Moody-Turner have compiled a collection of essays that offer access to some of the most innovative contemporary black fiction while addressing important issues in current African American literary studies. Distinguished scholars Houston Baker, Trudier Harris, Darryl Dickson-Carr, and Maryemma Graham join writers and younger scholars to explore the work of Toni Morrison, Edward P. Jones, Trey Ellis, Paul Beatty, Mat Johnson, Kyle Baker, Danzy Senna, Nikki Turner, and many others. The collection is bracketed by a foreword by novelist and graphic artist Mat Johnson, one of the most exciting and innovative contemporary African American writers, and an afterword by Alice Randall, author of the controversial parody The Wind Done Gone. Together, King and Moody-Turner make the case that diversity, innovation, and canon expansion are essential to maintaining the vitality of African American literary studies.
“A compelling collection of essays on the ongoing relevance of African American literature to our collective understanding of American history, society, and culture. Featuring a wide array of writers from all corners of the literary academy, the book will have national appeal and offer strategies for teaching African American literature in colleges and universities across the country.” —Gene Jarrett, Boston University
“[This book describes] a fruitful tension that brings scholars of major reputation together with newly emerging critics to explore the full range of literary activities that have flourished in the post-Civil Rights era. Notable are such popular influences as hip-hop music and Oprah Winfrey’s Book Club.” —American Literary Scholarship, 2013