Saturday, June 24, 2023

Scholarly Books: Black Literary Studies, 2002 - 2021

What follows isn't -- I repeat -- isn't an exhaustive list. In fact, it's a quite limited list, just a roundup of 157 scholarly books that came to mind for me recently, as I was recently writing about a presentation by Elizabeth McHenry and Kinohi Nishikawa.

It occurred to me, for quite some time now, that we don't have nearly enough writing about the state of the field when it comes to African American literary studies. So the following list offers one small contribution by mentioning a small number of scholarly works published between McHenry's Forgotten Readers: Recovering the Lost History of African American Literary Societies (2002) and her book, To Make Negro Literature: Writing, Literary Practice, and African American Authorship (2021). 

A few notable omissions: I've excluded biographies here, but will place them in a separate list for now. Also, I'll place books in that "Understanding" author series in a separate list.

2002: Forgotten Readers: Recovering the Lost History of African American Literary Societies by Elizabeth McHenry
2002: Soul Babies: Black Popular Culture and the Post-Soul Aesthetic by Mark Anthony Neal
2002: South of Tradition: Essays on African American Literature by Trudier Harris
2003: Liberation Memories: The Rhetoric and Poetics of John Oliver Killens by Keith Gilyard
2003: So Black and Blue: Ralph Ellison and the Occasion of Criticism by Kenneth W. Warren
2003: Summer Snow: Reflections on Being Black and Southern by Trudier Harris
2003: The Practice of Diaspora: Literature, Translation, and the Rise of Black Internationalism by Brent Hayes Edwards
2003: In the Break: The Aesthetics of the Black Radical Tradition by Fred Moten 
2003: The Trials of Phillis Wheatley: America's first Black poet and her encounters with the founding fathers by Henry Louis Gates, Jr.
2004: Afro-Blue: Improvisations in African American Poetry and Culture by Tony Bolden
2004: Burnin' Down the House: Home in African American Literature by Valerie Sweeney Prince
2004: Integral Music: Languages Of African-American Innovation by Aldon Nielsen
2004: Kinds of Blue: The Jazz Aesthetic in African American Narrative by Jürgen E. Grandt
2004: Liberation Historiography: African American Writers and the Challenge of History, 1794-1861 by John Ernest
2004: Prophets of the Hood: Politics and Poetics in Hip Hop by Imani Perry
2004: The Contemporary African American Novel: Its Folk Roots and Modern Literary Branches by Bernard W. Bell
2004: Unnatural Selections: Eugenics in American Modernism and the Harlem Renaissance by Daylanne K. English
2004: Wild Blessings: The Poetry of Lucille Clifton by Hilary Holladay
2005: Confluences: Postcolonialism, African American Literary Studies, and the Black Atlantic by John Cullen Gruesser
2005: Fettered Genius: The African American Bardic Poet from Slavery to Civil Rights by Keith D. Leonard
2005: In the Light of Likeness-Transformed: The Literary Art of Leon Forrest by Dana A. Williams
2005: The Black Arts Movement: Literary Nationalism in the 1960s and 1970s by James Smethurst
2005: Why I Hate Abercrombie & Fitch: Essays On Race and Sexuality by Dwight A. McBride
2005: Worrying the Line: Black Women Writers, Lineage, and Literary Tradition by Cheryl A. Wall
2006: A Spectacular Secret: Lynching in American Life and Literature by Jacqueline Goldsby

2006: Black Writers, White Publishers: Marketplace Politics in Twentieth- Century African American Literature by John K. Young
2006: Bodies in Dissent: Spectacular Performances of Race and Freedom, 1850-1910 by Daphne A. Brooks
2006: Bookmarks: Reading in Black and White A Memoir by Karla FC Holloway
2006: Faithful Vision: Treatments of the Sacred, Spiritual, and Supernatural in 20th-Century Af-Am Fiction by James W. Coleman
2006: Speaking Power: Black Feminist Orality in Women's Narratives of Slavery by DoVeanna S. Fulton
2007: Deans and Truants: Race and Realism in African American Literature by Gene Andrew Jarrett
2007: Lose Your Mother: A Journey Along the Atlantic Slave Route by Saidiya V. Hartman
2007: Private Lives, Proper Relations: Regulating Black Intimacy by Candice M. Jenkins
2007: Race, Theft, and Ethics: Property Matters in African American Literature by Lovalerie King
2008: Betrayal: How Black Intellectuals Have Abandoned the Ideals of the Civil Rights Era by Houston A. Baker, Jr.
2008: From the Plantation to the Prison: African-American Confinement Literature by Tara T. Green
2008: The Cambridge Introduction to Zora Neale Hurston by Lovalerie King
2008: Phillis Wheatley's Poetics of Liberation: Backgrounds and Contexts by John C. Shields
2008: Womanism, Literature, and the Transformation of the Black Community, 1965-1980 by Kalenda C. Eaton
2009: A Fatherless Child: Autobiographical Perspectives of African American Men by Tara T. Green
2009: Activist Sentiments: Reading Black Women in the Nineteenth Century by P. Gabrielle Foreman
2009: Book of Rhymes: The Poetics of Hip Hop by Adam Bradley
2009: Chaotic Justice: Rethinking African American Literary History by John Ernest
2009: Charles Johnson in Context by Linda Furgerson Selzer
2009: Parodies of Ownership: Hip-Hop Aesthetics and Intellectual Property Law by Richard Schur
2009: The Scary Mason-Dixon Line: African American Writers and the South by Trudier Harris
2009: The Suffering Will Not Be Televised: Af-Am Women and Sentimental Political Storytelling by Rebecca Wanzo
2010: Anthems, Sonnets, and Chants: Recovering the African American Poetry of the 1930s by Jon Woodson
2010: Monstrous Intimacies: Making Post-Slavery Subjects by Christina Sharpe
2010: Ralph Ellison in Progress: From "Invisible Man" to "Three Days Before the Shooting by Adam Bradley

2010 : The Indignant Generation: A Narrative History of Af-Am Writers and Critics, 1934-1960 by Lawrence P. Jackson
2010: Til Death Or Distance Do Us Part: Love and Marriage in African America by Frances Smith Foster
2010: Tradition and the Black Atlantic: Critical Theory in the African Diaspora by Henry Louis Gates, Jr.
2010: Writing Blackness: John Edgar Wideman's Art and Experimentation by James W. Coleman
2011: The Black Arts Enterprise and the Production of African American Poetry by Howard Rambsy II
2011: Living with Lynching: African American Lynching Plays, Performance, and Citizenship, 1890-1930 by Koritha Mitchell
2011: Private Bodies, Public Texts: Race, Gender, and a Cultural Bioethics by Karla FC Holloway
2011: Renegade Poetics: Black Aesthetics and Formal Innovation in African American Poetry by Evie Shockley
2011: Representing the Race: A New Political History of African American Literature by Gene Andrew Jarrett
2011: Southscapes: Geographies of Race, Region, and Literature by Thadious M. Davis
2011: The African American Roots of Modernism: From Reconstruction to the Harlem Renaissance by James Smethurst
2011: The African American Theatrical Body by Soyica Diggs Colbert
2011: The Muse is Music: Jazz Poetry from the Harlem Renaissance to Spoken Word by Meta DuEwa Jones
2011: True to the Language Game: African American Discourse, Cultural Politics, and Pedagogy by Keith Gilyard
2011: What Was African American Literature? by Kenneth W. Warren
2012: Against the Closet: Black Political Longing and the Erotics of Race by Aliyyah Abdur-Rahman
2012: Black Regions of the Imagination: African American Writers between the Nation and the World by Eve Dunbar
2012: Charisma and the Fictions of Black Leadership by Erica R. Edwards
2012: Pauline Hopkins and the American Dream: An Af-Am Writer's (Re)Visionary Gospel of Success by Alisha Knight
2012: Sites of Slavery: Citizenship and Racial Democracy in the Post-Civil Rights Imagination by Salamishah Tillet
2012: The Empire Abroad and the Empire at Home: Af-Am Lit and the Era of Overseas Expansion by John Cullen Gruesser
2012: The Sovereignty of Quiet: Beyond Resistance in Black Culture by Kevin Quashie
2013: Black Folklore and the Politics of Racial Representation by Shirley Moody
2013: Black Resonance: Iconic Women Singers and African American Literature by Emily J. Lordi
2013: Dividing Lines: Class Anxiety and Postbellum Black Fiction by Andreá N. Williams

2013: Each Hour Redeem: Time and Justice in African American Literature by Daylanne K. English
2013: Harlem Nocturne: Women Artists and Progressive Politics During World War II by Farah Jasmine Griffin
2013: Looking for Leroy: Illegible Black Masculinities by Mark Anthony Neal
2013: The Afro-Modernist Epic and Literary History: Tolson, Hughes, Baraka by Kathy Lou Schultz
2013: The Radical Fiction of Ann Petry by Keith Clark
2013: Women's Work: Nationalism and Contemporary African American Women's Novels by Courtney Thorsson
2014: Finding Your Roots: The Official Companion to the PBS Series by Henry Louis Gates, Jr.
2014: Freedom Time: The Poetics and Politics of Black Experimental Writing by Anthony Reed
2014: Legal Fictions: Constituting Race, Composing Literature by Karla FC Holloway
2014: Martin Luther King Jr., Heroism, and African American Literature by Trudier Harris
2014: New Body Politics: Narrating Arab and Black Identity in the Contemporary United States by Therí Alyce Pickens
2014: The Other Blacklist: The African American Literary and Cultural Left of the 1950s by Mary Helen Washington
2014: Unbought and Unbossed: Transgressive Black Women, Sexuality, and Representation by Trimiko Melancon
2014: Whitman Noir: Black America and the Good Gray Poet by Ivy Wilson
2014: Writing through Jane Crow: Race and Gender Politics in African American Literature by Ayesha K. Hardison
2015: Barbaric Culture and Black Critique: Black Antislavery Writers, Religion, and the Slaveholding Atlantic by Stefan Wheelock
2015: F.B. Eyes: How J. Edgar Hoover's Ghostreaders Framed African American Literature by William J. Maxwell
2015: Imagine the Sound: Experimental African American Literature after Civil Rights by Carther Mathes
2015: Love, Liberation, and Escaping Slavery: William and Ellen Craft in Cultural Memory by Barbara McCaskill
2015: The Things That Fly in the Night: Female Vampires in Literature of the Circum-Caribbean and African Diaspora by Giselle Liz Anatol
2015: Traces of the Old, Uses of the New: The Emergence of Digital Literary Studies by Amy E. Earhart
2016: Black Girlhood in the Nineteenth Century by Nazera Sadiq Wright
2016: In the Wake: On Blackness and Being by Christina Sharpe
2016: Slave Songs and the Birth of African American Poetry by Lauri Scheyer
2016: Speculative Blackness: The Future of Race in Science Fiction by André M. Carrington

2016: The Lives of Frederick Douglass by Robert S. Levine
2016: How to Read African American Literature: Post-Civil Rights Fiction and the Task of Interpretation by Aida Levy-Hussen
2017: A History of the African American Novel by Valerie Babb
2017: Black for a Day: White Fantasies of Race and Empathy by Alisha Gaines
2017: Black Post-Blackness: The Black Arts Movement and Twenty-First-Century Aesthetics by Margo Crawford
2017: Epistrophies: Jazz and the Literary Imagination by Brent Hayes Edwards
2017: James Baldwin, Toni Morrison, and the Rhtetorics of Black Male Subjectivity by Aaron Ngozi Oforlea
2017: Race, Transnationalism, and Nineteenth-Century American Literary Studies by Robert S. Levine
2017: Searching for Sycorax: Black Women’s Hauntings of Contemporary Horror by Kinitra D. Brooks
2018: Furiously Funny: Comic Rage from Ralph Ellison to Chris Rock by Terrence T. Tucker
2018: Geography and the Political Imaginary in the Novels of Toni Morrison by Herman Beavers
2018: Invisible Ball of Dreams: Literary Representations of Baseball behind the Color Line by Emily Ruth Rutter
2018: May We Forever Stand: A History of the Black National Anthem by Imani Perry
2018: Reimagining the Middle Passage: Black Resistance in Literature, Television, and Song by Tara T. Green
2018: Robert Hayden in Verse: New Histories of African American Poetry and the Black Arts Era by Derik Smith
2018: The Blues Muse: Race, Gender, and Musical Celebrity in American Poetry by Emily Ruth Rutter
2019: A History of African American Poetry by Lauri Scheyer
2019: Black and More than Black: African American Fiction in the Post Era by Cameron Leader-Picone
2019: Black Bourgeois: Class and Sex in the Flesh by Candice M. Jenkins
2019: Black Madness:: Mad Blackness by Therí Alyce Pickens
2019: Building the Black Arts Movement: Hoyt Fuller and the Cultural Politics of the 1960s by Jonathan Fenderson
2019: Cuban Literature in the Age of Black Insurrection by Matthew Pettway
2019: EC Comics: Race, Shock, and Social Protest by Qiana Whitted
2019: Jesting in Earnest: Percival Everett and Menippean Satire by Derek C. Maus
2019: On Freedom and the Will to Adorn: The Art of the African American Essay by Cheryl A. Wall

2019: Street Players: Black Pulp Fiction and the Making of a Literary Underground by Kinohi Nishikawa
2019: The Black Avenger in Atlantic Culture by Gregory Pierrot
2019: The Practice of Citizenship: Black Politics and Print Culture in the Early United States by Derrick R. Spires
2019: Wayward Lives, Beautiful Experiments by Saidiya V. Hartman
2019: White Negroes: When Cornrows Were in Vogue ... and Other Thoughts on Cultural Appropriation by Lauren Michele Jackson
2020: Afro-Realisms and the Romances of Race: Rethinking Blackness in the Af-Am Novel by Melissa Daniels-Rauterkus
2020: Bad Men: Creative Touchstones of Black Writers by Howard Rambsy II
2020: Being Property Once Myself: Blackness and the End of Man by Joshua Bennett
2020: Black Cultural Mythology by Christel N. Temple
2020: Black People Are My Business: Toni Cade Bambara's Practices by Thabiti Lewis
2020: Brick City Vanguard: Amiri Baraka, Black Music, Black Modernity by James Smethurst
2020: From Slave Cabins to the White House: Homemade Citizenship in African American Culture by Koritha Mitchell
2020: Groove Theory: The Blues Foundation of Funk by Tony Bolden
2020: Navigating the Fiction of Ernest J. Gaines: A Roadmap for Readers by Keith Clark
2020: Relative Races: Genealogies of Interracial Kinship in Nineteenth-Century America by Brigitte Fielder
2020: The Black Romantic Revolution: Abolitionist Poets at the End of Slavery by Matt Sandler
2020: The Content of Our Caricature: African American Comic Art and Political Belonging by Rebecca Wanzo
2020: Veil and Vow: Marriage Matters in Contemporary African American Culture by Aneeka Ayanna Henderson
2021: Behold the Land: The Black Arts Movement in the South by James Smethurst
2021: Black Aliveness, or A Poetics of Being by Kevin Quashie
2021: Black Celebrity: Contemporary Representations of Postbellum Athletes and Artists by Emily Ruth Rutter
2021: Depictions of Home in African American Literature by Trudier Harris
2021: How to Go Mad without Losing Your Mind: Madness and Black Radical Creativity by La Marr Jurelle Bruce
2021: In Search of The Color Purple: The Story of an American Masterpiece by Salamishah Tillet
2021: Liner Notes for the Revolution: The Intellectual Life of Black Feminist Sound by Daphne A. Brooks

2021: Read Until You Understand: The Profound Wisdom of Black Life and Literature by Farah Jasmine Griffin
2021: Soundworks: Race, Sound, and Poetry in Production by Anthony Reed
2021: The Inside Songs of Amiri Baraka by Aldon Nielsen
2021: The Other Side of Terror: Black Women and the Culture of US Empire by Erica R. Edwards
2021: What is African American Literature? by Margo Crawford
2021: To Make Negro Literature: Writing, Literary Practice, and African American Authorship by Elizabeth McHenry


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