Cover: Enter the New Negroes: Images of Race in American Culture, from Harvard University PressCover: Enter the New Negroes in E-DITION

Enter the New Negroes

Images of Race in American Culture

Product Details


$65.00 • £54.95 • €60.00

ISBN 9780674368835

Publication Date: 11/29/2004

199 pages

47 halftones


Available from De Gruyter »

Media Requests:

Related Subjects

Harvard University Press has partnered with De Gruyter to make available for sale worldwide virtually all in-copyright HUP books that had become unavailable since their original publication. The 2,800 titles in the “e-ditions” program can be purchased individually as PDF eBooks or as hardcover reprint (“print-on-demand”) editions via the “Available from De Gruyter” link above. They are also available to institutions in ten separate subject-area packages that reflect the entire spectrum of the Press’s catalog. More about the E-ditions Program »

With the appearance of the urban, modern, diverse “New Negro” in the Harlem Renaissance, writers and critics began a vibrant debate on the nature of African-American identity, community, and history. Martha Jane Nadell offers an illuminating new perspective on the period and the decades immediately following it in a fascinating exploration of the neglected role played by visual images of race in that debate.

After tracing the literary and visual images of nineteenth-century “Old Negro” stereotypes, Nadell focuses on works from the 1920s through the 1940s that showcased important visual elements. Alain Locke and Wallace Thurman published magazines and anthologies that embraced modernist images. Zora Neale Hurston’s Mules and Men, with illustrations by Mexican caricaturist Miguel Covarrubias, meditated on the nature of black Southern folk culture. In the “folk history” Twelve Million Black Voices, Richard Wright matched prose to Farm Security Administration photographs. And in the 1948 Langston Hughes poetry collection One Way Ticket, Jacob Lawrence produced a series of drawings engaging with Hughes’s themes of lynching, race relations, and black culture. These collaborations addressed questions at the heart of the movement and in the era that followed it: Who exactly were the New Negroes? How could they attack past stereotypes? How should images convey their sense of newness, possibility, and individuality? In what directions should African-American arts and letters move?

Featuring many compelling contemporary illustrations, Enter the New Negroes restores a critical visual aspect to African-American culture as it evokes the passion of a community determined to shape its own identity and image.

Recent News

Black lives matter. Black voices matter. A statement from HUP »

From Our Blog

Jacket: Iron and Blood: A Military History of the German-Speaking Peoples since 1500, by Peter Wilson, from Harvard University Press

A Lesson in German Military History with Peter Wilson

In his landmark book Iron and Blood: A Military History of the German-Speaking Peoples since 1500, acclaimed historian Peter H. Wilson offers a masterful reappraisal of German militarism and warfighting over the last five centuries, leading to the rise of Prussia and the world wars. Below, Wilson answers our questions about this complex history,