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Ragged Figures: The Lumpenproletariat in Nelson Algren and Ralph Ellison.
concept of the proletariat. That scorn masks a theoretical frustration with those social figures that remain immersed in concrete diverse specificity rather than merge into the homogeneous collectiveExpand
Playing in the Dark, on the Left, and Out of Bounds: Nelson Algren, World War II, and the Cross-Racial Imagination of Blackness
How do we evaluate the representation and figurative appropriation of racial blackness by nonblack writers? This essay addresses the work blackness accomplishes in texts authored by nonblack writersExpand
Ralph Ellison’s Marxism: The Lumpenproletariat, the Folk, and the Revolution
This article examines Ralph Ellison’s time as a writer on the Communist left in the 1930s and identifies the distinct structures of his thought in this understudied phase of his career. SituatingExpand
The Dialectic of Electricity: Kenneth Fearing, Walter Benjamin, and a Marxist Aesthetic
This essay reads Kenneth Fearing's Depression-era poetry as an innovative body of Marxist verse, one that attempts to craft an aesthetic reaction of shock and disorientation in the reader. In orderExpand
Playing the Dozens and Consuming the Cadillac: Ralph Ellison and Civil Rights Politics
This article challenges long-standing narratives of Ralph Ellison’s response to civil rights-era struggles as one of quietism, conservatism, or apolitical aestheticism. Focusing on a key episodeExpand