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by James Campbell

Download Talking at the gates: A life of James Baldwin fb2, epub

ISBN: 0571153917
Author: James Campbell
Language: English
Publisher: Faber and Faber (1991)
Pages: 306
Category: Ethnic & National
Subcategory: Biography
Rating: 4.1
Votes: 834
Size Fb2: 1626 kb
Size ePub: 1820 kb
Size Djvu: 1314 kb
Other formats: mobi azw mbr docx


James Campbell knew Baldwin for ten years before Baldwin's death.

James Campbell knew Baldwin for ten years before Baldwin's death. For this book, he interviewed many of Baldwin's friends and examined several hundred pages of James Baldwin was one of America's finest and most influential writers. By the time he died in 1987, his books, such as The Fire Next Time, Go Tell It on the Mountain, and Giovanni's Room, had become modern classics. James Campbell knew Baldwin for ten years before Baldwin's death.

James Campbell (born 5 June 1951) is a Scottish writer. Campbell was born in Croftfoot, on the southside of Glasgow. Talking at the Gates: A Life of James Baldwin. He left school at the age of fifteen to become an apprentice printer. After hitchhiking through Europe, Israel and North Africa, he studied to gain acceptance to the University of Edinburgh (1974–78). His first book, Invisible Country: A journey through Scotland, was published in 1984. Campbell, James (1986). Gate Fever (Preface). Weidenfeld & Nicolson.

Talking at the Gates" is a rough-hewn but valuable biography of James Baldwin written by someone who knew him during the last decade of his life. Author James Campbell is honest about both his aim and the result; his book "is offered not as a definitive picture but as a host of sketches and perceptions aiming towards a definition. Eminently readable and discerning, these "sketches and perceptions" offer a great introduction to the life of one of America's greatest twentieth-century writers

Campbell, James, 1951-. A literary biography describing the life, friends, and work of the American author.

Campbell, James, 1951-. Books for People with Print Disabilities. Internet Archive Books.

James Baldwin on the Albert Memorial with statue of Shakespeare. By the time of his death in 1987 James Baldwin had long since become that most tragic of literary figures: a major writer on the skids whose last few published books, painful in their lack of distinction, served only to remind discriminating readers of how far he had plummeted since his glory days. And glory days they had truly been: in the late Fifties and early Sixties he was not only one of America’s most critically acclaimed authors, but, in the words of James Campbell-who has now published the first full biography of Baldwin- practically the most famous writer in the land.

James Campbell’s latest book is Syncopations. His biography Talking at the Gates: A Life of James Baldwin was reissued in 2005. Continue reading the main story.

Talking at the Gates A Life of James Baldwin, With a New Afterword. by James Campbell (Author). In February 1978, James Baldwin received an invitation to address students at Edinburgh University. It was an informal request-so much so, indeed, that it came without the endorsement of the university or of any student body, and with no mention of a fee or travelling expenses. In fact, it was scarcely more than a letter of response to Baldwin's writing, with a postscript asking him please to come to Scotland. He was not short of invitations, but for some reason he accepted this one.

James Baldwin was one of America’s finest and most influential writers

James Baldwin was one of America’s finest and most influential writers. His books, including Go Tell it on the Mountain and Another Country, are considered modern classics, and by encompassing issues of race, religion, civil rights and homosexuality in his novels and plays, he became known as something of an incendiary writer – on his death in 1987 Newsweek described him as ‘an angry writer, yet his intelligence was so provoking and his sentences so. elegant that he quickly became the black writer that white liberals liked to fear

James Campbell's Talking At the Gates is a fine, highly readable, measured look at the Baldwin career.

James Campbell's Talking At the Gates is a fine, highly readable, measured look at the Baldwin career. His critical assessments of Baldwin are accurate and telling: "If it was necessary to isolate a single, dominating impulse driving James Baldwin's work, it would be the need to defeat the silence which lies behind slavery and his people's first forced arrival in America - the Land of the Free, as Baldwin never tired of ironically repeating.

James Campbell, Talking at the Gates: A Life of James Baldwin ( Berkeley: University of California, 1991 ), 284–285. James A. Baldwin, The Cross of Redemption: Uncollected Writings, ed. 11. Herb Boyd, Baldwin’s Harlem: A Biography of James Baldwin ( New York: Atria Books, 2008 ), 7. oogle Scholar. 13. Baldwin, Collected Essays (New York: Library of America, 1998) (hereafter cited in text as CE. Randall Kenan (New York: Pantheon Books, 2010) (hereafter cited in text as TCR).

Book by Campbell, James

Comments:

Gaeuney
"Talking at the Gates" is a rough-hewn but valuable biography of James Baldwin written by someone who knew him during the last decade of his life. Author James Campbell is honest about both his aim and the result; his book "is offered not as a definitive picture but as a host of sketches and perceptions aiming towards a definition." Eminently readable and discerning, these "sketches and perceptions" offer a great introduction to the life of one of America's greatest twentieth-century writers.

The strength of this biography is Campbell's gathering of the oral history of Baldwin's life through interviews with those who knew him, and he is best when describing his pivotal friendships with Lucien Happersberger and Engin Cezzar, his feuds with Richard Wright and Norman Mailer, and his associations with those in the civil rights movement. (Inexplicably, Baldwin's lifelong friend Sol Stein is never mentioned in the book.) Also fascinating are the documents found in Baldwin's FBI dossier; Campbell has added an afterword to the 2002 edition describing his battle to unseal the file. Although these documents serve to validate Baldwin's ceaseless paranoia, they are so filled with rumors, fabrications, and outright nonsense that they prove to be incidental to his life; inevitably, they tell us more about the FBI (and its insidious role in the civil rights movement) than about James Baldwin, and Campbell places undue emphasis on their importance.

The book's value as a literary biography is tempered by the author's own tastes, and since this was written only four years after Baldwin's death, Campbell forgoes assessments of Baldwin's evolving legacy among writers and critics. He clearly feels that Baldwin was at his best as an essayist and, with the exception of "Go Tell It on a Mountain," he is often severe in his criticism of the novels and stories. In particular, he damns Baldwin's later work with faint praise--sometimes rightfully, but sometimes too hastily. For example, the splendid "Just Above My Head" (which, I think, has greatly improved with age) is praised for "magnificence in the conception" but summarized with a laundry list of supposed faults ("too many bloodless characters, too neatly divided into goodies and baddies; too strong a dependence on colour as an indicator of virtue; too many rambling conversations and descriptions") and for having "no plot," which seems a peculiar thing to say about a novel that follows the life of a world-famous gospel singer from birth to death. During the two decades since Campbell's biography was written, Baldwin's novels and stories have become, I would argue, more highly regarded. But his non-fiction, while still uniquely powerful and elegant, carry the unfortunate burden of Sixties-era fervor and have increasingly assumed the guise of historical documents--groundbreaking and essential, yes, but not always timeless ("The Fire Next Time," "Notes of a Native Son," and "Stranger in the Village" being, of course, among the absolute exceptions).

James Baldwin deserves a thorough and scholarly treatment along the lines of the recent biographies of his contemporaries John Cheever, Raymond Carver, and Flannery O'Connor. Campbell may well prove to be Baldwin's Boswell, but we await his definitive and impartial biographer.
Reggy
Interesting overview.

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