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Passing
by Nella Larsen and Kaitlyn Greenidge




Overview -
First published to critical acclaim in 1929, Passing firmly established Nella Larsen's prominence among women writers of the Harlem Renaissance. The Modern Library is proud to present Passing 8212;an electrifying story of two women who cross the color line in 1920s New York 8212;together with a new Introduction by the Obie Award- winning playwright and novelist Ntozake Shange.

Irene Redfield, the novel's protagonist, is a woman with an enviable life. She and her husband, Brian, a prominent physician, share a comfortable Harlem town house with their sons. Her work arranging charity balls that gather Harlem's elite creates a sense of purpose and respectability for Irene. But her hold on this world begins to slip the day she encounters Clare Kendry, a childhood friend with whom she had lost touch. Clare 8212;light-skinned, beautiful, and charming 8212;tells Irene how, after her father's death, she left behind the black neighborhood of her adolescence and began passing for white, hiding her true identity from everyone, including her racist husband. As Clare begins inserting herself into Irene's life, Irene is thrown into a panic, terrified of the consequences of Clare's dangerous behavior. And when Clare witnesses the vibrancy and energy of the community she left behind, her burning desire to come back threatens to shatter her careful deception.

Brilliantly plotted and elegantly written, Passing offers a gripping psychological portrait of emotional extremity. The New York Times Book Review called Larsen quot;adroit at tracing the involved processes of a mind divided against itself, that fights between the dictates of reason and desire. quot; The Saturday Review of Literature said, quot; Larsen has produced a work so fine, sensitive, and distinguished that it rises above race categories and becomes that rare object, a good novel. quot;

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More About Passing by Nella Larsen; Kaitlyn Greenidge

 
 
 

Overview

First published to critical acclaim in 1929, Passing firmly established Nella Larsen's prominence among women writers of the Harlem Renaissance. The Modern Library is proud to present Passing 8212;an electrifying story of two women who cross the color line in 1920s New York 8212;together with a new Introduction by the Obie Award- winning playwright and novelist Ntozake Shange.

Irene Redfield, the novel's protagonist, is a woman with an enviable life. She and her husband, Brian, a prominent physician, share a comfortable Harlem town house with their sons. Her work arranging charity balls that gather Harlem's elite creates a sense of purpose and respectability for Irene. But her hold on this world begins to slip the day she encounters Clare Kendry, a childhood friend with whom she had lost touch. Clare 8212;light-skinned, beautiful, and charming 8212;tells Irene how, after her father's death, she left behind the black neighborhood of her adolescence and began passing for white, hiding her true identity from everyone, including her racist husband. As Clare begins inserting herself into Irene's life, Irene is thrown into a panic, terrified of the consequences of Clare's dangerous behavior. And when Clare witnesses the vibrancy and energy of the community she left behind, her burning desire to come back threatens to shatter her careful deception.

Brilliantly plotted and elegantly written, Passing offers a gripping psychological portrait of emotional extremity. The New York Times Book Review called Larsen quot;adroit at tracing the involved processes of a mind divided against itself, that fights between the dictates of reason and desire. quot; The Saturday Review of Literature said, quot; Larsen has produced a work so fine, sensitive, and distinguished that it rises above race categories and becomes that rare object, a good novel. quot;

 

Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780375758133
  • ISBN-10: 0375758135
  • Publisher: Modern Library
  • Publish Date: May 2002
  • Page Count: 192
  • Dimensions: 8.04 x 5.18 x 0.65 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 0.36 pounds

Series: Modern Library Torchbearers

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