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How Their Living Outside America Affected Five African American Authors

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The book examines fictional responses of African American expatriate writers to Europe in the 1960s. It analyzes the change in the African American perception of Europe and reveals how African American writers of the 1960s responded in imaginative ways to the European scene. This study examines the mechanisms of attraction to Europe since they run parallel to a growing disillusionment with the region. African American exilic fiction of the 1960s is striking in its skepticism and uncompromising criticism, and as such is a mirror of the times. It does not seek consensus but veracity and reflects the mood of disappointment with Western political and cultural models that were being seriously questioned and challenged in the 1960s. The book is designed for specialists and historians of African American literature as well as for novices who wish to deepen their understanding of cultural and literary exchanges between the United States and Europe.
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"... provides us with richly textured readings of important but shamefully understudied novels and also calls into question any tendency to dismiss the bulk of African American literature of 1960s as hamstrung by a naive or misguided nationalist impulse." - Prof. Richard Yarborough University of California at Los Angeles "... breaks away from the pitfalls of essentialism and reductionism that has plagued some of the existing approaches to these writers. Importantly, it also shows that even Baldwin, Smith, Yerby, Demby, Brown, and Williams were not free from stereotypical thinking about race and gender as they lived their lives as 'twentieth-century black American writers in European exile.'" - Prof. Magdalena J. Zaborowska University of Michigan"

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