As a result of being disillusioned by American prejudice against blacks and gays, Baldwin left the United States at the age of 24 and settled in Paris, France. His flight was not just a desire to distance himself from American prejudice, but to see himself and his writing beyond an African-American context. Baldwin did not want to be read as "merely a Negro; or, even, merely a Negro writer". Also, he left the United States desiring to come to terms with his sexual ambivalence and flee the hopelessness that many young African-American men like himself succumbed to in New York.
In Paris, Baldwin was soon involved in the cultural radicalism of the Left Bank. His work started to be published in literary anthologies, notably Zero, which was edited by his friend Themistocles Hoetis and which had already published essays by Richard Wright.
After a short while, Baker was the most successful American entertainer working in France. Ernest Hemingway called her "the most sensational woman anyone ever saw."
Khanga said her grandfather escaped being nabbed by the secret police by a fluke. He was away from home the day they came for him. When Golden dutifully turned himself in, he was informed that the quota of arrests for his area had been fulfilled, Khanga said.
Although both African and African-American were widely used in the United States in the 19th cent., the adoption of African-American as a preferred term among black Americans dates from the late 1960s and early 1970s (particularly after an April 1972 conference at which Ramona Edelin, president of the National Urban Coalition, proposed its use). The term gained widespread acceptance following its endorsement by the Reverend Jesse Jackson (b. 1941) during his presidential nomination campaign in 1988.
« Older Be it Pill, Patch, Shot, Ring | Vending machine tally: This rule can go to hell. Newer »
This thread has been archived and is closed to new comments