37 Facts About African-American literature


African American literature is the body of literature produced in the United States by writers of African descent.

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African-American literature writing has tended to incorporate oral forms, such as spirituals, sermons, gospel music, blues, or rap.

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Today, African-American literature has become accepted as an integral part of American literature, with books such as Roots: The Saga of an American Family by Alex Haley, The Color Purple by Alice Walker, which won the Pulitzer Prize; and Beloved by Toni Morrison achieving both best-selling and award-winning status.

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In broad terms, African-American literature can be defined as writings by people of African descent living in the United States.

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African-American literature has generally focused on the role of African Americans within the larger American society and what it means to be an American.

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African-American literature has both been influenced by the great African diasporic heritage and shaped it in many countries.

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African-American literature—especially written poetry, but prose—has a strong tradition of incorporating all of these forms of oral poetry.

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African-American literature's poetry was praised by many of the leading figures of the American Revolution, including George Washington, who thanked her for a poem written in his honor.

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African-American literature began to work for abolitionist causes, making his way to Buffalo, New York, and later Boston, Massachusetts.

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African-American literature was a prolific writer, beginning with an account of his escape to freedom and experience under slavery.

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Genre of African-American literature that developed in the middle of the 19th century is the slave narrative, accounts written by fugitive slaves about their lives in the South and, often, after escaping to freedom.

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African-American literature eventually became the most prominent African American of his time and one of the most influential lecturers and authors in American history.

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African-American literature was a preacher for five years in England without the support of a denomination.

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African-American literature published her Memoirs of the Life, Religious Experience, Ministerial Travel and Labours of Mrs Zilpha Elaw, an American Female of Colour in 1846, while still living in England.

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African-American literature's narrative was meant to be an account of her spiritual experience.

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African-American literature had two works published in 1831 and 1832 titled Religion and the Pure Principles of Morality and Meditations.

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African-American literature's works were praised by Alexander Crummell and William Lloyd Garrison.

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African-American literature turned to religion at the age of 16 in an attempt to find comfort from the trials of her life.

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African-American literature married Nero Prince and traveled extensively in the West Indies and Russia.

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African-American literature became a missionary and in 1841 she tried to raise funds for missionary work in the West Indies, publishing a pamphlet entitled The West Indies: Being a Description of the Islands, Progress of Christianity, Education, and Liberty Among the Colored Population Generally.

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African-American literature worked tirelessly on several civil rights fronts; she recruited black troops in Michigan, helped with relief efforts for freedmen and women escaping from the South, led a successful effort to desegregate the streetcars in Washington, DC, and she counseled President Abraham Lincoln.

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Many African-American literature women wrote about the principles of behavior of life during the period.

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African-American literature newspapers were a popular venue for essays, poetry and fiction as well as journalism, with newspaper writers like Jennie Carter developing a large following.

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African-American literature was a professor at Atlanta University and later at Howard University.

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African-American literature founded the Universal Negro Improvement Association and African Communities League.

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African-American literature encouraged black nationalism and for people of African ancestry to look favorably upon their ancestral homeland.

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African-American literature wrote a number of essays published as editorials in the UNIA house organ, the Negro World newspaper.

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African-American literature first received attention in the 1922 publication The Book of American Negro Poetry.

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African-American literature's work was rediscovered in the 1970s through Alice Walker's 1975 article “In Search of Zora Neale Hurston”, published in Ms.

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Younger African-American novelists include David Anthony Durham, Karen E Quinones Miller, Tayari Jones, Kalisha Buckhanon, Mat Johnson, ZZ Packer and Colson Whitehead, to name a few.

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Finally, African-American literature has gained added attention through the work of talk-show host Oprah Winfrey, who repeatedly has leveraged her fame to promote literature through the medium of her Oprah's Book Club.

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Similarly, African-American literature is within the framework of a larger American literature, but it is independent.

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Some conservative academics and intellectuals argue that African-American literature exists as a separate topic only because of the balkanization of literature over the last few decades, or as an extension of the culture wars into the field of literature.

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Many African-American writers thought their literature should present the full truth about life and people.

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African-American literature wrote that Black artists intended to express themselves freely no matter what the Black public or white public thought.

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For Warren, it is the coherence of responding to racist narratives in the struggle for civil rights that establishes the body of African-American literature, and the scholar suggests that continuing to refer to the texts produced after the civil rights era as such is a symptom of nostalgia or a belief that the struggle for civil rights has not yet ended.

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African-American literature's thesis is that legally cognizable racial identities are sustained through constitutional or legislative act, and these nurture the "legal fiction" of African-American identity.

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