African American Authors Then and Now | Wyatt’s World

To celebrate African American History Month, I’ve selected authors’ previous and current titles to show the connections from past to present.

Cullen, Countee

1925, 1993: Color (Ayer Co. Pubs.). Cullen’s first collection offers an authentic portrait of a black poet inspired by America’s changing literary landscape.

2013: Countee Cullen: Collected Poems (Library of America, “American Poets Project Series,” Mar.). ed. by Major Jackson. A first-ever volume presenting previously published and unpublished works.

Davis, Sampson

2003: The Pact: Three Young Men Make a Promise and Fulfill a Dream (Riverhead: Penguin). The powerful true story of three African Americans doctors from the streets of Newark fulfilling a dream.

2013: Living and Dying in Brick City: An E.R. Doctor Returns Home with Lisa Frazier Page (Spiegel & Grau). Lisa Frazier Page, Davis offers an exceptional take on the healthcare crisis in the inner city from a doctor who grew up in the community he serves.

Kincaid, Jamaica

1997: Annie John (Farrar, 1997). A classic story about a young girl coming of age on the island of Antigua.

2013: See Now Then (Farrar, Feb.). The complications of marriage revealed in a deeply felt new novel.

Rowell, Charles Henry, ed.

2002: Making Callaloo: 25 Years of Black Literature (St. Martin’s). “Rowell, editor and founder of the Callaloo journal, presents a collection of ‘the very best poetry and fiction published in the journal’ since its inception in 1976.” [LJ 2/1/02.]

2013: Angles of Ascent: A Norton Anthology of Contemporary African American Poetry (W.W. Norton). 1960s poets gathered in a dazzling new anthology.

Theoharis, Jeanne

2009: Want To Start a Revolution? Radical Women in the Black Freedom Struggle (New York Univ.). Editor Theoharis pulls together accounts of female activists whose plight for freedom charged a new kind of society.

2013: The Rebellious Life of Mrs. Rosa Parks (Beacon.). Author Theoharis offers a new biography of Rosa Parks, stressing her political and activist power.




Neal Wyatt About Neal Wyatt

Neal Wyatt compiles LJ's online feature Wyatt's World and is the author of The Readers' Advisory Guide to Nonfiction (ALA Editions, 2007). She is a collection development and readers' advisory librarian from Virginia. Those interested in contributing to The Reader's Shelf should contact her directly at