At once a powerful evocation of his early life in Harlem and a disturbing examination of the consequences of racial injustice to both the individual and the body politic, James Baldwin galvanized the nation in the early days of the civil rights movement with his eloquent manifesto. The Fire Next Time stands as one of the essential works of our literature.
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About the Author
James Baldwin (1924-1987), acclaimed New York Times bestselling author, was educated in New York. His first novel, Go Tell It on the Mountain, received excellent reviews and was immediately recognized as establishing a profound and permanent new voice in American letters. The appearance of The Fire Next Time in 1963, just as the civil rights movement was exploding across the American South, galvanized the nation and continues to reverberate as perhaps the most prophetic and defining statement ever written of the continuing costs of Americans' refusal to face their own history. It became a national bestseller, and Baldwin was featured on the cover of Time. The next year, he was made a member of the National Institute of Arts and Letters and collaborated with the photographer Richard Avedon on Nothing Personal, a series of portraits of America intended as a eulogy for the slain Medger Evers. His other collaborations include A Rap on Race with Margaret Mead and A Dialogue with the poet-activist Nikki Giovanni. He also adapted Alex Haley's The Autobiography of Malcolm X into One Day When I Was Lost. He was made a commander of the French Legion of Honor a year before his death, one honor among many he achieved in his life.
Jesse Martin is a narrator and an accomplished actor and singer on the stage and screen. He has spent nine seasons as Detective Edward Green on the perennial hit Law & Order. In the theater, he originated the role of Thomas B. Tom Collins in Jonathan Larson's award-winning musical Rent. He also reprised his role in the film adaptation. He is an alumnus of New York University and a classically trained stage actor.
Actor Jesse L. Martin effectively re-creates the tone and tenor of the author's view of America at the beginning of the 1960s. Martin chooses to eschew accents and flowery modulations and sticks to the story...Most striking is Baldwin's reference to Robert Kennedy's prediction that a black man would become the nation's president sometime in the next forty years.-- "AudioFile"
Basically the finest essay I've ever read...Baldwin refused to hold anyone's hand. He was both direct and beautiful all at once. He did not seem to write to convince you. He wrote beyond you.-- "Ta-Nehisi Coates, #1 New York Times bestselling author"
So eloquent in its passion and so scorching in its candor that it is bound to unsettle any reader.-- "Atlantic"
The Fire Next Time is ultimately a hopeful and healing essay. Baldwin ranges far in these hundred pages...What binds it all together is the eloquence, intimacy, and controlled urgency of the voice. Baldwin clearly paid in sweat and shame for every word in this text. What's incredible is that he managed to keep his cool.-- "Amazon.com"
The Fire Next Time exposed me to a time and perspective I had no understanding and little awareness of. This book is part memoir of a Harlem childhood and part examination of racial injustice. James Baldwin gave voice to the growing Civil Rights Movement...This book will increase your awareness, empathy, and conviction that something drastic must be done.-- "BookRiot"