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Reading List August 04, 2018

Remembering James Baldwin

Explore the ideas, influence, and legacy of this extraordinary American writer.
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American writer and social critic James Baldwin would have turned 94 this week. In his memory, we pulled together pieces from our archive that explore the ideas, influence, and legacy of this extraordinary man.


Baldwin the Lonely
by Ed Pavlić

“A week before King was slain, Baldwin told his brother that he just didn’t care about the country like he once did. He saw the looming catastrophe and figured most Americans deserved it.”

• • •

Baldwin the Sibling
by Ed Pavlić

“Baldwin’s correspondence with his youngest brother, David, gives an unprecedented picture of his life and work, and deepen our sense of possible human courage, commitment, and cooperation.”

• • •

Baldwin the Forgotten
by Joseph Vogel

“Few have inspired the Movement for Black Lives as much as James Baldwin. But the critical success of Raoul Peck’s 2016 film I Am Not Your Negro makes it easy to forget that for several decades Baldwin fell from public favor.”

• • •

Baldwin the Novelist
by Boston Review

Listen to Baldwin read two excerpts from Another Country. Published in 1962, the novel traces the complex interracial relationships of a group of artists, musicians, and writers clustered around Rufus, a jazz musician whose suicide affects them profoundly.

Our weekly themed Reading Lists compile the best of Boston Review’s archive. Previews are delivered to members every Sunday. Become a member to receive them ahead of the crowd.

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