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 A first-ever volume presenting previously published and unpublished works.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.




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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