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An Interview with James Baldwin (1969)
Rich Blint
Nazar Büyüm

This is the first English language publication of an interview with James Baldwin (1924–87) conducted by Nazar Büyüm in 1969, Istanbul, Turkey. Deemed too long for conventional publication at the time, the interview re-emerged last year and reveals Baldwin’s attitudes about his literary antecedents and influences such as Richard Wright, Langston Hughes, and Countee Cullen; his views concerning the “roles” and “duties” of a writer; his assessment of his critics; his analysis of the power and message of the Nation of Islam; his lament about the corpses that are much of the history and fact of American life; an honest examination of the relationship of poor whites to American blacks; an interrogation of the “sickness” that characterizes Americans’ commitment to the fiction and mythology of “race,” as well as the perils and seductive nature of American power.

James Baldwin Review
James Baldwin and Ray Charles in “The Hallelujah Chorus”
Ed Pavlić

Based on a recent, archival discovery of the script, “But Amen is the Price” is the first substantive writing about James Baldwin’s collaboration with Ray Charles, Cicely Tyson, and others in a performance of musical and dramatic pieces. Titled by Baldwin, “The Hallelujah Chorus” was performed in two shows at Carnegie Hall in New York City on 1 July 1973. The essay explores how the script and presentation of the material, at least in Baldwin’s mind, represented a call for people to more fully involve themselves in their own and in each other’s lives. In lyrical interludes and dramatic excerpts from his classic work, “Sonny’s Blues,” Baldwin addressed divisions between neighbors, brothers, and strangers, as well as people’s dissociations from themselves in contemporary American life. In solo and ensemble songs, both instrumental and vocal, Ray Charles’s music evinced an alternative to the tradition of Americans’ evasion of each other. Charles’s sound meant to signify the history and possibility of people’s attainment of presence in intimate, social, and political venues of experience. After situating the performance in Baldwin’s personal life and public worldview at the time and detailing the structure and content of the performance itself, “But Amen is the Price” discusses the largely negative critical response as a symptom faced by much of Baldwin’s other work during the era, responses that attempted to guard “aesthetics” generally—be they literary, dramatic, or musical—as class-blind, race-neutral, and apolitical. The essay presents “The Hallelujah Chorus” as a key moment in Baldwin’s search for a musical/literary form, a way to address, as he put it, “the person and the people,” in open contention with the social and political pressures of the time.

James Baldwin Review
Open Access (free)
Jazzing the Blues Spirit and the Gospel Truth in James Baldwin’s “Sonny’s Blues”
Steven C. Tracy

The webs of musical connection are essential to the harmony and cohesion of James Baldwin’s “Sonny’s Blues.” As a result, we must explore the spectrum of musical references Baldwin makes to unveil their delicate conjunctions. It is vital to probe the traditions of African-American music—Spirituals, Blues, Jazz, and Pop—to get a more comprehensive sense of how Baldwin makes use of music from the sacred and secular continuum in the African-American community. Looking more closely at the variety of African-American musical genres to which Baldwin refers in the story, we can discern even more the nuances of unity that Baldwin creates in his story through musical allusions, and shed greater light on Baldwin’s exploration of the complexities of African-American life and music, all of which have as their core elements of human isolation, loneliness, and despair ameliorated by artistic expression, hope, and the search for familial ties. Through musical intertextuality, Baldwin demonstrates not only how closely related seemingly disparate (in the Western tradition) musical genres are, but also shows that the elements of the community that these genres flow from and represent are much more in synchronization than they sometimes seem or are allowed to be. To realize kinship across familial (Creole), socio-economic (the brother), and most importantly for this paper appreciation and meanings of musical genres advances to Sonny the communal cup of trembling that is both a mode and an instance of envisioning and treating music in its unifying terms, seeing how they coalesce through a holistic vision.

James Baldwin Review
From 9/11 to Donald Trump

American television was about to be revolutionised by the advent of video on demand in 2007, when Netflix, having delivered over one billion DVDs, introduced streaming. This book explores the role that fictional television has played in the world politics of the US in the twenty-first century. It focuses on the second golden age of television, which has coincided with the presidencies of George W. Bush, Barack Obama, and Donald J. Trump. The book is structured in three parts. Part I considers what is at stake in rethinking the act of watching television as a political and academic enterprise. Part II considers fictional television shows dealing explicitly with the subject matter of formal politics. It explores discourses of realpolitik in House of Cards and Game of Thrones, arguing that the shows reinforce dominant assumptions that power and strategy inevitably trump ethical considerations. It also analyses constructions of counterterrorism in Homeland, The West Wing, and 24, exploring the ways in which dominant narratives have been contested and reinforced since the onset of the War on Terror. Part III considers television shows dealing only implicitly with political themes, exploring three shows that make profound interventions into the political underpinnings of American life: The Wire, The Walking Dead and Breaking Bad. Finally, the book explores the legacies of The Sopranos and Mad Men, as well as the theme of resistance in The Handmaid's Tale.

Abstract only
The extraordinary couple
Kathrina Glitre

Conclusion 181 Conclusion: the extraordinary couple According to André Bazin, ‘comedy was in reality the most serious genre in Hollywood – in the sense that it reflected, through the comic mode, the deepest moral and social beliefs of American life’ (1982: 35). Hollywood romantic comedy’s articulation of the ideology of heterosexual love, marriage and desire is far from consistent, and certainly reflects many of the deep-seated anxieties of the culture(s) which produced it. However, where the realist Bazin implies that Hollywood comedy’s seriousness lies in

in Hollywood romantic comedy States of the union, 1934–65
Open Access (free)
Fetters of an American farmgirl
R.J. Ellis

particular racist constructions of American life, forcefully exposes this labourintensive side to farm life, otherwise so perfidiously omitted from pastoral discourse on both sides of the Atlantic. Notes My thanks to Julia Swindell’s assistance, and John Lucas’s invaluable advice, leading me to Cousin Phillis, the Dorset farmworker’s trousers and Portia’s Belmont. My thanks are also due to the British Academy for their support for my work. 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 Mary Collier, ‘The Woman’s Labour’, in ‘The Thresher’s Labour’ by Stephen Duck and ‘The Woman’s Labour’ by Mary

in Special relationships
Philip M. Taylor

, the start of the Cold War was accompanied by a hate-inspired antiSoviet propaganda campaign that permeated all aspects of American life, especially between 1947 and 1958. This was orchestrated by the Senate’s Internal Security Committee and the House of Representative’s Un-American Activities Committee (HUAC), founded in 1938 to weed out Nazi agents. Culminating in the sordid McCarthyite ‘witch-hunts’ of the early 1950s, this campaign created a climate of fear in which sympathy for the ‘Enemy’ was equated with sympathy for the Devil. The conversion of a former

in Munitions of the Mind
John Thieme

most important single source, while his encounters with American life are detailed in My Dateless Diary (1964), most memorable for an account of an interview with Greta Garbo, a particularly extraordinary East-West encounter. Several of the critical studies of Narayan’s work provide details of his life and background, but they contain pitfalls for the unwary. There are frequent discrepancies in the factual information they offer, perhaps reflective of their subject’s own reticence when it came to engaging with details such as dates. By far the most reliable account

in R.K. Narayan
Hugh Lenox Scott (1853–1934) and the United States’ imperial expansion
Stefan Eklöf Amirell

In his study of US Army officer Hugh Lenox Scott, Stefan Eklöf Amirell uses the biography of Scott to decentre our understanding of US imperialism. By meticulously pursuing the question of the normal versus the exceptional in Scott’s trajectory, Amirell demonstrates the complexity of white male US imperialism. It was an endeavour which combined ruthless violence, mortifying stereotypes and romanticism with a genuine curiosity for Native American life. Scott’s ethnographic capital would turn out to be a military career asset, positioning him as a gifted negotiator in US colonial hotspots in the Philippines and Cuba. Indeed, Scott’s trajectory forces us to rethink conventional narratives of the military’s role in imperial projects – such as for instance the link, made by sociologist George Steinmetz, between a military habitus, the readiness to use violence and the denigration of ethnographic knowledge – while also posing the wider challenge of how to conceptualize imperialism so as to be able to contain figures like Scott in our narratives. Amirell uses the exceptional normal as an optic by which to measure Hugh Lenox Scott against the standards of his time and at the same time shows the exceptional normal as a problem in global historical method and perspective.

in Global biographies
Kevern Verney

This chapter examines the historiography on the Ku Klux Klan of the 1920s and the causes and consequences of the ‘Great Migration’ of African Americans from the southern states to cities of the north, like New York, Chicago and Detroit, between 1915 and 1925. It considers the formation and early work of the National Urban League (NUL) and the NAACP, and the contribution of leading figures within the Association including W. E. B. Du Bois, James Weldon Johnson, Mary White Ovington and Walter White. Their published memoirs and reminiscences provide case studies to highlight the strengths and weaknesses of autobiography as primary source material. The racial policies of the presidential administrations of Woodrow Wilson, 1913–21, are discussed together with the impact of the First World War and prewar and wartime race riots on the lives of African Americans and US race relations. In the postwar era attention focuses on the rise of Marcus Garvey and his Universal Negro Improvement Association (UNIA), including the role of women in the organization, UNIA activists at local level, and the Garvey movement outside the United States, most notably in Africa and the Caribbean. There is also an analysis of the contribution made by West Indian immigrants to African American life and society. In respect to cultural developments there is discussion of the origins, nature and significance of the Harlem Renaissance, or New Negro Movement, of the 1920s and the extent to which it can be seen as a form of resistance to racism and colonialism.

in The debate on black civil rights in America, Second edition