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The Grey Album : On the Blackness of Blackness
by Kevin Young


Overview -

*Finalist for the 2012 National Book Critics Circle Award for Criticism*

*A "Publishers Weekly" Top 10 Literary Criticism and Essays Pick for Spring 2012*

"The Grey Album, the first work of prose by the brilliant poet Kevin Young, winner of the Graywolf Press Nonfiction Prize"

Taking its title from Danger Mouse's pioneering mashup of Jay-Z's "The Black Album "and the Beatles' "The White Album," Kevin Young's encyclopedic book combines essay, cultural criticism, and lyrical choruses to illustrate the African American tradition of lying storytelling, telling tales, fibbing, improvising, "jazzing." What emerges is a persuasive argument for the many ways that African American culture "is "American culture, and for the centrality of art and artfulness to our daily life.  Read more...


 
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More About The Grey Album by Kevin Young
 
 
 
Overview

*Finalist for the 2012 National Book Critics Circle Award for Criticism*

*A "Publishers Weekly" Top 10 Literary Criticism and Essays Pick for Spring 2012*

"The Grey Album, the first work of prose by the brilliant poet Kevin Young, winner of the Graywolf Press Nonfiction Prize"

Taking its title from Danger Mouse's pioneering mashup of Jay-Z's "The Black Album "and the Beatles' "The White Album," Kevin Young's encyclopedic book combines essay, cultural criticism, and lyrical choruses to illustrate the African American tradition of lying storytelling, telling tales, fibbing, improvising, "jazzing." What emerges is a persuasive argument for the many ways that African American culture "is "American culture, and for the centrality of art and artfulness to our daily life. Moving from gospel to soul, funk to freestyle, Young sifts through the shadows, the bootleg, the remix, the grey areas of our history, literature, and music."

 
Details
  • ISBN-13: 9781555976071
  • ISBN-10: 1555976077
  • Publisher: Graywolf Press
  • Publish Date: March 2012
  • Page Count: 483
  • Dimensions: 9.03 x 6.04 x 1.4 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 1.67 pounds


Related Categories

Books > Literary Collections > American - African American
Books > Literary Collections > Essays

 
Publishers Weekly Reviews

Publishers Weekly® Reviews

  • Reviewed in: Publishers Weekly, page .
  • Review Date: 2012-01-09
  • Reviewer: Staff

In this elegant and informative study, poet and English professor, Young weaves a saga of African-American culture, in particular literature and music. Young moves through slave narratives and spirituals and beatniks and funk in a multifaceted yet coherent work comprising history, analysis, and theory. Young offers fresh, incisive assessments of myriad writers and musicians, performers all of the storytelling and counterfeiting conventions and traditions. He focuses on George Moses Horton, Paul Laurence Dunbar, and Langston Hughes before shifting the focus to music, where his attention encompasses, among other genres, be-bop and hip-hop, the blues, and soul music. He includes unlikely figures throughout in this “story of what I read, heard, and saw at the crossroads of African American and American culture”: Eliot, Pound, Picasso; the cakewalk, the quilt; the Rolling Stones. (Mar.)

 
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