Black Like Us: A Century of Lesbian, Gay, and Bisexual African American Fiction
Senior Fellow, Devon Carbado
(Cleis Press; 1st edition 2002, ISBN: 978-1573441087)
The editors of this fine paperback original Carbado (law and African American studies, UCLA), Dwight A. McBride (English and African American studies, Northwestern Univ.), and Donald Weise (Gore Vidal: Sexually Speaking) here offer an overview of 100 years of African American queer fiction that affirms rather than negates the interconnections among race, gender, and sexuality. All the usual names are here James Baldwin, Langston Hughes, April Sinclair, Alice Walker, etc. but the editors also do a great service in resurrecting lesser-known writers such as Owen Dodson. Whether the 36 authors are represented by a short story or by excerpts from their novels, the selections as a whole show them to be exemplars of "black queer writing." Additionally, each of the three main sections features a lengthy critical overview of queer writing from the eras covered (the Harlem Renaissance, the postwar period, and contemporary gay life), with brief biographical information preceding each piece. Although the editors make no claims for this being a definitive study, most readers will be pleased with the collection's impressive breadth. Highly recommended for all libraries as a complement to Shawn S. Ruff's Go the Way Your Blood Beats. Anthony J. Adam, A & M Univ. Lib., Prairie View, TX
Copyright 2002 Cahners Business Information, Inc.
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