BONDAGE, FREEDOM AND BEYOND: The Prose of Black Americans by

BONDAGE, FREEDOM AND BEYOND: The Prose of Black Americans

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KIRKUS REVIEW

A basically substantial collection of writings and speeches on the black struggle with a number of puzzling omissions. Divided into three sections -- The Dark Wings of Slavery, To Secure this Freedom, The Challenge of the Hour -- it includes pertinent thoughts from known spokesmen (Douglass, Washington, Du Bois, Garvey, Hughes, Malcolm X) and lesser known figures -- a former slave, an early expatriate. A few are reminiscent of the interviews published in Meltzer's In Their Own Words or Julius Lester's To Be a Slave; others are similar to documents in Chambers' Chronicles of Black Protest. The final contribution (but not the chronological last) is King's 1963 statement, ""Yes, We Shall Overcome."" What is surprising, despite a summarizing essay From editor Gayle, is the absence of Eldridge Cleaver, the token reference to H. Rap Brown and Stokely Carmichael, and disregard of the most recent responses -- going underground and confrontations with the police. It is possible to obtain an understanding of the growth of the movement from these selections, but without recognition of strong personal leaders, it is a not quite satisfying introduction.

Pub Date: Feb. 5th, 1971
Publisher: Doubleday