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A Man Of Everything Essay

2451 words - 10 pages

Baldwin instilled hope into the hopeless during the Civil Rights movement with his works of the 70’s. His work, Just Above My Head, followed the lifetime of a crowd of associates who were involved in a church related organization in Harlem, they lived throughout the time of homosexuality, warfare, scarcity, equality of others, along with fortune and adoration and notoriety (Romano). Baldwin placed the idea of complexity in the minds of society, stating that in order to get what you wanted there were going to be obstacles until success was reached, also that idea of complexity let homosexuals and African Americans know that it was fine to be different. Just like the novel, Just Above My Head, ...view middle of the document...

Much like the Civil Rights movement, the black community came together when all else failed. When everything went against them, the only thing they had in the end was their family friends and their freedom of speech and to come together as a group. Another work by Baldwin’s was one that concluded all of the hard work that civil rights leaders went through. It is an essay, “No Name in the Street”, that addresses the prediction of “The Fire Next Time”. Baldwin talks about his prediction of how the black would lash back on the whites if the racial discrimination did not change. And predictably, Baldwin was correct. After the assassination of Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. it happened. There were riots, many whites were murdered and the crimes were unspeakable. Overall, Baldwin knew exactly what was going to happen and unfortunately it did. “Riots, assassinations, the emergence of black power and the intensification of white blacklash have attested to Baldwin’s powers of divination” (Watkins).Baldwin’s works had a great impact on society do to the fact that he grasped every aspect of the time period. Baldwin captured the emotion of the Civil Rights movement in his works which not only reach out to the African American population but to the white community as well. His works even correlated with what was going on at that time and brought faith to the people, but most effectively to African Americans and homosexuals.
James Baldwin was a prodigious author and advocate for the homosexuals and African Americans of his society, his contributions earned him the prominent George Polk prize (James Baldwin- Biography).This, along with other accomplishments, showed how important his works were to his community. Baldwin, nevertheless, was a great man who achieved many goals in his lifetime. Although Baldwin’s works are commended, some critics debate that his works were prominently about his life and self- involvements which blocked his awareness of others’ struggles in the time period. “His fiction has often been attacked, notably by younger black writers in the 1960’s, as too personal, too patently a working-out of inner conflict at the price of distorting the realities of race and racial conflict in America” (Romano). Also, critics say Baldwin “wrote poignantly of his struggles to accept the way he looked” (Daniels). Baldwin only wrote of his inner conflict to come at peace with himself, but also reach out to his audience that they were not the only ones that were going through pain.
“His fiction has often been attacked, notably by younger black writers in the 1960’s, as too personal, too patently a working-out of inner conflict at the price of distorting the realities of race and racial conflict in America” (Romano).Although critics may say that Baldwin’s works were too personal for him to realize the struggles of others, Baldwin, a homosexual and a man of African descent was the perfect candidate to speak on behalf of African Americans and homosexuals during...

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