South of tradition essays on african american literature
South African literature - Wikipedia
What makes South of Tradition interesting is the selection of texts. Alice Walker's The Color Purple — scrutinized for its humorous aspects — James Baldwin's Giovanni's Room, and Ralph Ellison's Invisible Man are among the classics of the genre, but other texts are among the lesser known. Harris-Lopez's presentation of William Melvin Kelley's A Different Drummer and Henry Dumas's story "Ark of Bones" add aspects of African American literature not commonly read about.
African Oral Tradition, History, & Literature at …
Southern writers, particularly after the Civil War, saw the advantage of devising a literary agenda to advance a political one and found in a successful formula for this program, especially during the Reconstruction and post-Reconstruction era, roughly from 1870 to 1920. Southern white writers, both men and women, made local color fiction a convenient tool for insinuating racial paternalism into pastoral evocations of a traditional society of the past. Popular taste dictated many of the properties of the genre: quaint locales, attention to details of dress, manner, and speech, colorful vernacular dialects, marriage plots which both highlight and overcome difference (between families, classes, and regions). Many of the most popular local color works of white male writers ( in (1887), in his tales (1880), James Lane Allen in his many short stories) used the mechanism of the frame narrator who speaks in a detached, non-vernacular voice that controls the portrayals of quainter but also less sophisticated narrators in the "inside" story. The double structures are designed to highlight the gap between simple and "peculiar" or exotic folk, colorful and sympathetic though they may be, and the educated, realistic, framing voice that the reader has no choice but to accept as a higher authority. Herein the pastoral tension between the sophisticated man of the world who takes the backward glance and the rural rustic who has been left behind meet within a dual (and dueling) narrative structure. White women writers often promoted the same white paternalism ( in her (1883), in stories such as those collected in (1893), Eugenia Jones Bacon in (1898), and in (1897)), yet they were much less likely to create the remote, outside narrative voice and often used dialect to achieve less patronizing, more flexible versions of life in community. As we will see below, some white writers and many African American writers during this period adapted local color trappings to literature which set itself against the conservative political agenda of traditional Local Colorists.