"There's no way not to suffer. But you try all kinds of ways to keep from drowning in it." The men and women of eight short stories grasp the aforesaid truth on an elemental level, and their tales, as told by James Baldwin, detail the ingenious and often desperate ways in which they try to keep their heads above water. With characters ranging from a jazz pianist and his heroin addiction, to a redneck deputy scarred by his childhood vision of a lynch mob in action, Baldwin's stories are haunting, heartbreaking, and horrifying, vivifying Baldwin's uncanny knowledge of the wounds racism has left in both its victims and its perpetrators.
James Baldwin (1924–1987) was a novelist, essayist, playwright, poet, and social critic. His first novel, Go Tell It on the Mountain, appeared in 1953 to excellent reviews, and his essay collections Notes of a Native Son and The Fire Next Time were bestsellers that made him an influential figure in the growing civil rights movement. Baldwin spent much of his life in France, where he moved to escape the racism and homophobia of the United States. He died in France in 1987, a year after being made a Commander of the French Legion of Honor. View titles by James Baldwin
The Rockpile

The Outing

The Man Child

Previous Condition

Sonny's Blues

This Morning, This Evening, So Soon

Come Out the Wilderness

Going to Meet the Man
"He is thought-provoking, tantalizing, irritating, abusing and amusing. And he uses words as the sea uses waves." —Langston Hughes

“If Van Gogh was our 19th-century artist-saint, James Baldwin is our 20th-century one.”  —Michael Ondaatje

“This author retains a place in an extremely select group; that composed of the few genuinely indispensable American writers.”  —Saturday Review

About

"There's no way not to suffer. But you try all kinds of ways to keep from drowning in it." The men and women of eight short stories grasp the aforesaid truth on an elemental level, and their tales, as told by James Baldwin, detail the ingenious and often desperate ways in which they try to keep their heads above water. With characters ranging from a jazz pianist and his heroin addiction, to a redneck deputy scarred by his childhood vision of a lynch mob in action, Baldwin's stories are haunting, heartbreaking, and horrifying, vivifying Baldwin's uncanny knowledge of the wounds racism has left in both its victims and its perpetrators.

Author

James Baldwin (1924–1987) was a novelist, essayist, playwright, poet, and social critic. His first novel, Go Tell It on the Mountain, appeared in 1953 to excellent reviews, and his essay collections Notes of a Native Son and The Fire Next Time were bestsellers that made him an influential figure in the growing civil rights movement. Baldwin spent much of his life in France, where he moved to escape the racism and homophobia of the United States. He died in France in 1987, a year after being made a Commander of the French Legion of Honor. View titles by James Baldwin

Table of Contents

The Rockpile

The Outing

The Man Child

Previous Condition

Sonny's Blues

This Morning, This Evening, So Soon

Come Out the Wilderness

Going to Meet the Man

Praise

"He is thought-provoking, tantalizing, irritating, abusing and amusing. And he uses words as the sea uses waves." —Langston Hughes

“If Van Gogh was our 19th-century artist-saint, James Baldwin is our 20th-century one.”  —Michael Ondaatje

“This author retains a place in an extremely select group; that composed of the few genuinely indispensable American writers.”  —Saturday Review

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