As World War II progressed, concentration camps such as Dachau, which opened in March 1933 and could accommodate 5,000 people, ballooned in size and no one could escape the atrocities perpetrated by the Nazis. By the end of the war, when the Americans liberated Dachau in 1945, Konnilyn Feig points out the camp held 30,000 prisoners, six times what it could accommodate, and “8,000 unburied corpses.” … Read More Who do you want to be?
Over the past few weeks, I’ve been teaching John A. Williams’ Clifford’s Blues and exploring the intricate interconnections between Jim Crow and the Holocaust. In a recent post, I wrote some about the Black Horror on the Rhine and Clifford’s Blues. Today, I want to continue some of that discussion, specifically by looking at Clifford’s June 27, 1938, diary entry which covers a few different events and topics … Read More The Revelation of the Past in John A. Williams’ “Clifford’s Blues”
“Dedicated to those without memorial or monument.” That is the epigraph to John A. Williams’ Clifford’s Blues (1999), a novel that illuminates the the connections between Jim Crow and the Holocaust and illuminates the Nazis treatment of Blacks during their reign of terror. Clifford Pepperidge, a Black, gay musician from New Orleans who traveled to Europe to escape Jim Crow and play music narrates … Read More The Black Horror on the Rhine, Jim Crow, and the Holocaust
Over the past year, I have been thinking about a project that am currently working on. The project involves examining African American texts from the 1960s and 1970s that center on interracial relationships. I chose this time period because the Supreme Court struck down anti-miscegenation laws in 1967 in Loving v. Virginia; however, even forty years later, racist individuals still disapproved of interracial relationships. … Read More Interracial Intimacy and “Loving v. Virginia” Syllabus
Thinking about the idea of white womanhood in Toomer’s “Becky” and African American womanhood in “Blood Burning-Moon,” I commented that the concluding vignette of the Northern section, “Bona and Paul,” contains some similarities to the two Southern vignettes. “Bona and Paul” focuses on two Southerners, Paul, a phenotypically white male who tentatively starts a relationship with a white co-ed Bona. Looking at “Bona and … Read More Interracial Relationships in Toomer’s "Bona and Paul"