Walls
122 pages
English

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122 pages
English
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Description

Walls: Essays, 1985-1990, Kenneth McClane's first book of autobiographical essays (originally published in 1991), is closely related to his second collection, Color, published by the University of Notre Dame Press in 2009. Walls is a powerful and deeply moving meditation on relationships. It begins with an essay on the death of McClane's brother, Paul, which "changed everything. Time, my work, everything found a new calculus." His brother's life and death are present in some way in all the essays that follow "A Death in the Family," as McClane tells us about giving a poetry reading in a maximum-security prison; his experience of being one of the first two African American students to attend America's oldest private school; teaching creative writing; his sister, Adrienne; a divestment protest at Cornell; and his encounters with James Baldwin. McClane has written a new preface to this paperback edition of Walls.

"Walls reminds us of the differences that set us apart, dividing our world into good kids and troublemakers, winners and losers, the beautiful and the damned. The anodyne for exile in these essays is McClane's common but by no means commonplace lexicon, at once evocative and spare, that leads us to painful but honest connection and the luminous possibility of empathy." --William L. Andrews, University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill

"Kenneth McClane's Walls is a collection of exquisitely crafted autobiographical essays that rivals the most profound nonfictional writings of James Baldwin in its skillful investigation of the hidden recesses of the always-throbbing black American soul. Indeed, Walls is a beautifully calibrated exploration of the challenges faced by a courageously self-aware--and refreshingly self-revealing--black intellectual whose journey to and in the American mainstream is both menacing and exhilarating." --Michael Awkward, University of Michigan


Sujets

Informations

Publié par
Date de parution 30 septembre 2010
Nombre de lectures 0
EAN13 9780268086824
Langue English
Poids de l'ouvrage 78 Mo

Informations légales : prix de location à la page 0,0800€. Cette information est donnée uniquement à titre indicatif conformément à la législation en vigueur.

Exrait

WA L L S
THE AFRICAN AMERICAN INTELLECTUAL HERITAGE
Paul Spickard and Patrick Miller, Series Editors
W A L L S
Essays 1985 –1990
Kenneth A. McClane
University of Notre Dame Press Notre Dame, Indiana
Copyright © 2010 by Kenneth A. McClane
Paperback edition published in 2010 by the University of Notre Dame Press Notre Dame, Indiana 46556
First published in 1991 by Wayne State University Press
Library of Congress Cataloging-in-Publication Data McClane, Kenneth A., 1951– Walls : essays 1985–1990 / Kenneth A. McClane. — Pbk. ed. p. cm. — (The African American intellectual heritage) Originally published: Detroit : Wayne State University Press, 1991. ISBN-13: 978-0-268-03520-4 (pbk. : alk. paper) ISBN-10: 0-268-03520-2 (pbk. : alk. paper) 1. McClane, Kenneth A., 1951– 2. African American poets—Biography. 3. African Americans—Biography. I. Title. PS3563.A26119Z46 2010 814'.6—dc22 [B] 2010024342
The paper in this book meets the guidelines for permanence and durability of the Committee on Production Guidelines for Book Longevity of the Council on Library Resources.
For Alvin Aubert
Who Knows but that, on the lower frequencies, I speak for you? —Ralph Ellison,Invisible Man
Contents
Preface to the 2010 Paperback Edition
Introduction
A Death in the Family
Walls: A Journey to Auburn
The School
Unity Day
Baxter’s Program: Creative Writing at Cornell
Intimate Injustice
Keep On Keeping On
Between Yes and No
Acknowledgments
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13
17
29
45
65
77
83
97
111
121
Preface to the 2010 Paperback Edition
I am delighted that the University of Notre Dame Press has decided to republish my first collection of essays,Wallsbook. The was a true labor of love—it was my way of dealing with a brother dead; and, just as importantly, it was my small attempt at celebrating my mother and father, who never thought their child would prede-cease them. Of course, the book is about much more: there is an essay about my brain-damaged sister, a narrative about a poetry reading I gave at the second oldest maximum-security prison in America, a long essay about my ruinous experience as one of the first two black students at the oldest private school in America, a treatise about teaching creative writing, and a paean to the great au-thor James Baldwin, who taught me much. Still, my brother is at the center of each piece, even if he is not mentioned, looming like a clas-sical deity. And yet the essays are not dreary or doom-tainted. If my brother taught me anything, it was to see life as a boundless com-mencement. My brother was neither easygoing nor conventional, and he lived hard. He asked of me only to live my own life. “Be your-self, bro,” he’d say.
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