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The Middle-Atlantic Writers Association, Inc. . . . attempts (1) to provide

a forum and publishing outlet for blossoming and established writers from

the region and (2) to generate scholarship about writers and subjects

from the region, . . . neglected aspects of literature.

 

 

The Middle-Atlantic Writers Association

Review

Distinguished scholar and educator Arthur P. Davis--winner of the first MAWA Distinguished Critic Award--receives the Therman B. O'Daniel Distinguished Educator Award, October 20, 1988,

from Board Chairman Burney J. Hollis

Official Publication of the Middle Atlantic Writers Association

(MAWA) Volume 16, Numbers 1 and 2 

Contents

Negritude and Its Cross Cultural Influences: The Case of Native African, Caribbean and African-American Writers

Rose Ure Mezu

1

"Wonderful Dealings": Making African-American Self-hood Speak Through Colonial Literary Conventions in John Marrant's Conversion and "Indian Captivity Narrative"

Karen Chandler

20

Kenosis of Biblical Texts: Method and Meaning in Zora Neale Hurston's Their Eyes Were Watching God

D. H. Kehl

40

Rewriting the Black Matriarch: Eva in Toni Morrison's Sula

Rose De Angelis

52

Singing Beyond Frederick Douglass: Toni Morrison's Use of Song in Beloved

Peter J. Capuano

60

The Mythic Return: Reconfiguring Home in Maryse Conde's Heremakhonon

Simone A. James Alexander

67

Contributors

Simone A. James Alexander teaches in the School of Liberal Arts and Sciences at the Pratt Institute in Brooklyn, New York

Rose de Angelis is Assistant Professor of English at Marist College and the editor of the book series Anthropology and Literature. Her interests include ethnic and American literature and gender studies. her work on the cultural construction of the Italian female in fiction has appeared in Forum Italicum and Italian Americana. a recent article on the sociocultural impact of names in Italian-American and African-American literature was published in a collection entitled Shades of Black and White. Her collection of essays dealing with anthropology and literature is forthcoming.

Peter J. Capuano teaches at the Cushing Academy, a New England boarding school. He is preparing to enter a doctoral program in English. He has published an article on Henry David Thoreau in The Oswald Review.

Karen Chandler is Associate professor of African-American and American literature and film at the University of Louisville. Her work appears in many scholarly journals, including African-American Review, The Henry James Review and Arizona Quarterly. She is currently completing a manuscript on melodramatic fiction and film and their audiences and had begun a study of juvenile fiction about slavery and emancipation. One of her most recent works appears in Afaa Michael Weaver's anthology of creative non-fiction, These Hands I Know: African American Writers on Family.

Burney J. Hollis has been the editor of the Middle-Atlantic Writers Association Review since its inauguration in 1982. He is professor of English and Dean of the College of Liberal Arts at Morgan State University. A former Fulbright Scholar, Woodrow Wilson Fellow and NEH Summer Fellow, he earned his bachelor's degree at Morgan State College and his master's degree and doctorate at the University of Pennsylvania. He has published a variety of essays and books on African American and American literature, with a focus on writers of Maryland Eastern Shore, including Walters E. Turpin and Sarah E. Wright, and on preserving the literary tradition of African-American colleges and universities.

He also serves on the Board of Directors and the executive Committee and chairs the Education and Programs Committee for the Reginald F. Lewis Maryland Museum of African-American History and Culture soon to be built in downtown Baltimore.

D.G. Kehl is Professor of English at Arizona State University at Tempe, where he teaches courses in American literature, primarily modern and contemporary. He teaches upper-level courses on F. Scott Fitzgerald, Eudora Welty, Flannery O'Connor and the American novel. He also teaches courses on the contemporary Southern novel, American literary humor and American literature and the Holocaust. He has published several articles and three books, including Poetry and the Visual Arts.

Rose Ure Mezu is Associate Professor of English at Morgan State University in Baltimore, Maryland. She received her B.A. and M.A. from the State University of New York at Buffalo, a Diplome d'Etudes from the University of Paris (Sorbonne), and the Ph.D. from the Federal University of Port Harcourt, Nigeria. She is the author of Women in Chains: Abandonment in Love Relationships in the Fiction of Selected West African Writers and a book of poems, Song of the Hearth. She is also editor of a number of collections of essays on Africana literatures and co-editor of leadership, culture and racism. A former Commissioner for Social Welfare in the civilian government of Imo State in Nigeria, Dr. Mezu coordinated for three years the annual "Writers of African Descent Speak" Conference at Morgan.

 

The Middle-Atlantic Writers Association, Inc.

The Association

The Middle-Atlantic Writers Association, Inc. is a non-profit organization of creative writers, scholars, critics, and literature enthusiasts which aims at preserving, perpetuating and studying the literary tradition of the Middle-Atlantic region, with a specific focus on the literature of African Americans, the Black Diaspora, women and the multicultural, global community. In order to achieve these objectives, it attempts (1) to provide a forum and publishing outlet for blossoming and established writers from the region and (2) to generate scholarship about writers and subjects from the region, as well as other neglected aspects of literature. The Association counts among its members prominent authors, critics and scholars, as well as many writers making their literary debut and enthusiastic patrons of literature

Activities

In addition to its annual conferences, the middle-Atlantic Writers Association, Inc., sponsors the following activities:

--     Creative Writing Contests

--     Special Research Projects

--     MAWA Review

--     MAWA Newsletter

--     Annual Bibliographies

--     Writers Workshops

--     MAWA Distinguished Writer Award

--     Therman B. O'Daniel Distinguished Educator Award

--     MAWA

Membership

LIFE MEMBERSHIP: Any creative writer or scholar who has produced noteworthy or promising published or unpublished creative writing and/or scholarship and who was born in, lives in, or has written about the Middle-Atlantic region may become a voting life member of the Association.

membership Fee: $400.00

(Payable in consecutive annual installments of $100)

FULL MEMBERSHIP: Any creative writer or scholar who has produced noteworthy or promising published  or unpublished creative writing and/or scholarship and who was born in, lives in, or has written about the Middle-Atlantic region may become a full voting member of the Association.

Annual Membership Fee: $35.00

INSTITUTIONAL MEMBERSHIP: Any college or university, or any professional or community group which has an interest in promoting the study of the literature of the Middle-Atlantic region or in promoting creative writing may become an institutional member of the Association

Annual membership Fee: $200.00

STUDENT MEMBERSHIP: Any college or university student who has produced noteworthy or promoting published or unpublished creative writing and/or scholarship and who was born in, lives in, or has written about the Middle-Atlantic region may become a non-voting member of the Association

Annual membership fee; $25.00

TO:

Professor Frances M. Alston, Treasurer

Middle-Atlantic Writers Association, Inc.

MORGAN STATE UNIVERSITY

1700 E. Cold Spring Lane

Baltimore, Maryland 21251

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AALBC.com's 25 Best Selling Books


 

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The Persistence of the Color Line

Racial Politics and the Obama Presidency

By Randall Kennedy

Among the best things about The Persistence of the Color Line is watching Mr. Kennedy hash through the positions about Mr. Obama staked out by black commentators on the left and right, from Stanley Crouch and Cornel West to Juan Williams and Tavis Smiley. He can be pointed. Noting the way Mr. Smiley consistently “voiced skepticism regarding whether blacks should back Obama” . . .

The finest chapter in The Persistence of the Color Line is so resonant, and so personal, it could nearly be the basis for a book of its own. That chapter is titled “Reverend Wright and My Father: Reflections on Blacks and Patriotism.”  Recalling some of the criticisms of America’s past made by Mr. Obama’s former pastor, Mr. Kennedy writes with feeling about his own father, who put each of his three of his children through Princeton but who “never forgave American society for its racist mistreatment of him and those whom he most loved.” 

His father distrusted the police, who had frequently called him “boy,” and rejected patriotism. Mr. Kennedy’s father “relished Muhammad Ali’s quip that the Vietcong had never called him ‘nigger.’ ” The author places his father, and Mr. Wright, in sympathetic historical light.

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1493: Uncovering the New World Columbus Created

By Charles C. Mann

I’m a big fan of Charles Mann’s previous book 1491: New Revelations of the Americas Before Columbus, in which he provides a sweeping and provocative examination of North and South America prior to the arrival of Christopher Columbus. It’s exhaustively researched but so wonderfully written that it’s anything but exhausting to read. With his follow-up, 1493, Mann has taken it to a new, truly global level. Building on the groundbreaking work of Alfred Crosby (author of The Columbian Exchange and, I’m proud to say, a fellow Nantucketer), Mann has written nothing less than the story of our world: how a planet of what were once several autonomous continents is quickly becoming a single, “globalized” entity.

Mann not only talked to countless scientists and researchers; he visited the places he writes about, and as a consequence, the book has a marvelously wide-ranging yet personal feel as we follow Mann from one far-flung corner of the world to the next. And always, the prose is masterful. In telling the improbable story of how Spanish and Chinese cultures collided in the Philippines in the sixteenth century, he takes us to the island of Mindoro whose “southern coast consists of a number of small bays, one next to another like tooth marks in an apple.”

*   *   *   *   *

Ratification

The People Debate the Constitution, 1787-1788

By Pauline Maier

A notable historian of the early republic, Maier devoted a decade to studying the immense documentation of the ratification of the Constitution. Scholars might approach her book’s footnotes first, but history fans who delve into her narrative will meet delegates to the state conventions whom most history books, absorbed with the Founders, have relegated to obscurity. Yet, prominent in their local counties and towns, they influenced a convention’s decision to accept or reject the Constitution. Their biographies and democratic credentials emerge in Maier’s accounts of their elections to a convention, the political attitudes they carried to the conclave, and their declamations from the floor. The latter expressed opponents’ objections to provisions of the Constitution, some of which seem anachronistic (election regulation raised hackles) and some of which are thoroughly contemporary (the power to tax individuals directly).—Booklist

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Life on Mars

By Tracy K. Smith

Tracy K. Smith, author of Life on Mars has been selected as the winner of the 2012 Pulitzer Prize for Poetry. In its review of the book, Publishers Weekly noted the collection's "lyric brilliance" and "political impulses [that] never falter." A New York Times review stated, "Smith is quick to suggest that the important thing is not to discover whether or not we're alone in the universe; it's to accept—or at least endure—the universe's mystery. . . . Religion, science, art: we turn to them for answers, but the questions persist, especially in times of grief. Smith's pairing of the philosophically minded poems in the book’s first section with the long elegy for her father in the second is brilliant." Life on Mars follows Smith's 2007 collection, Duende, which won the James Laughlin Award from the Academy of American Poets, the only award for poetry in the United States given to support a poet's second book, and the first Essence Literary Award for poetry, which recognizes the literary achievements of African Americans. The Body’s Question (2003) was her first published collection.

Smith said Life on Mars, published by small Minnesota press Graywolf, was inspired in part by her father, who was an engineer on the Hubble space telescope and died in 2008.

*   *   *   *   *

Season of Adventure

By George Lamming

First published in 1960, Season of Adventure details the story of Fola, a light-skinned middle-class girl who has been tipped out of her easy hammock of social privilege into the complex political and cultural world of her recently independent homeland, the Caribbean island of San Cristobal. After attending a ceremony of the souls to raise the dead, she is carried off by the unrelenting accompaniment of steel drums onto a mysterious journey in search of her past and of her identity. Gradually, she is caught in the crossfire of a struggle between people who have "pawned their future to possessions" and those "condemned by lack of learning to a deeper truth." The music of the drums sounds throughout the novel, "loud as gospel to a believer's ears," and at the end stands alone as witness to the tradition which is slowly being destroyed in the name of European values. Whether through literary production or public pronouncements, George Lamming has explored the phenomena of colonialism and imperialism and their impact on the psyche of Caribbean people.

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The White Masters of the World

From The World and Africa, 1965

By W. E. B. Du Bois

W. E. B. Du Bois’ Arraignment and Indictment of White Civilization (Fletcher)

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Ancient African Nations

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Negro Digest / Black World

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The Death of Emmett Till by Bob Dylan  The Lonesome Death of Hattie Carroll  Only a Pawn in Their Game

Rev. Jesse Lee Peterson Thanks America for Slavery / George Jackson  / Hurricane Carter

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The Journal of Negro History issues at Project Gutenberg

The Haitian Declaration of Independence 1804  / January 1, 1804 -- The Founding of Haiti 

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update 18 May 2012

 

 

 

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Related files: MAWA 2003  West Indian Narrative-- Part One  Part Two   Part Three  Part Four  Experiment in Haiti   West Indian Narrative

MAWA Review Volume 16, Numbers 1 and 2  George Lamming and New World Imagination  Eric Roach and Flowering Rock  Kam Williams Interviews Colin Roach