Colson Whitehead, zombies, and afrofuturism

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[By Howard Rambsy II] Colson Whitehead’s previous novel The Intuitionist and John Henry Days lent themselves to afrofuturist examinations. In particular, the novels covered issues about the intersections between race and mechanical technologies. Zone One corresponds to afrofuturism, but rather than mechanical technologies, Whitehead’s “zombie” novel might be categorized as speculative fiction. The book reveals Whitehead delving into a popular genre that has nonetheless been […]

Top 10 list for Colson Whitehead’s The Intuitionist

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[By Howard Rambsy II] Every year that I’ve assigned Colson Whitehead’s The Intuitionist, folks in the classes who have some initial difficulties with the book want to know what made me choose it. For some reason, I typically stumble through answers. Over the years, I’ve developed a list to that addresses their questions. I think. Perhaps. Maybe. So here we go, my new and improved […]

The Coverage of…. Zone One By Colson Whitehead

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[Compiled by Howard Rambsy II] Here’s a sketch of the coverage of Zone One by Colson Whitehead. The pre-publication attention that the work has received has been remarkable. On February 1, Colson Whitehead announced on his twitter page: “Ok: My new book is called Zone One & it comes out 10/18. It concerns the rehabilitation of NYC after the apocalypse.” February 1,  The GalleyCat blog […]

Colson Whitehead & the Upper Floors

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[By Howard Rambsy II] “Literary reputations may not always rise and fall as predictably as elevators,” noted Gary Krist toward the end of a February 7, 1999 review of The Intuitionist. “But if there’s any justice in the world of fiction, Colson Whitehead’s should be heading toward the upper floors.” Perhaps there’s some justice, because Whitehead has risen to those upper floors. It’s necessary of […]

Colson Whitehead, Zone One, and Publishing History

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[By Howard Rambsy II] Next Tuesday, October 18, will mark the release of Colson Whitehead’s novel Zone One. His previous four novels and one work of creative non-fiction, The Colossus of New York have helped make him one of our leading literary figures. Whitehead has distinguished himself as a really inventive writer, and with this upcoming “zombie” novel, he seems to further stretch the boundaries […]

The Coverage Of…Daniel Rasmussen’s—American Uprising

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[Compiled By Kenton Rambsy]     Daniel Rasmussen’s—American Uprising: The Untold Story of America’s Largest Slave Revolt is the riveting and long-neglected story of this elaborate plot, the rebel army’s dramatic march on the city, and its shocking conclusion. No North American slave uprising—not Gabriel Prosser’s, not Denmark Vesey’s, not Nat Turner’s—has rivaled the scale of this rebellion either in terms of the number of […]

The Coverage of… Manning Marable and Malcolm X

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[An HBW collaboration with Howard Rambsy II via SIUE Black Studies] The shocking passing of Manning Marable and the long-awaited publication of his biography Malcolm X: A Life of Reinvention have prompted quite a bit of commentary. [Related: Marable, the 1950s, & Black Public Intellectuals] Our work with the Project on the History of Black Writing prompted us to keep track of the coverage on […]