Toni Morrison & James Baldwin in Harlem, 1986

James Baldwin and Toni Morrison, are notable literary and cultural giants of the twenty-first century, who wrote important books about African American experiences in New York City. Baldwin’s If Beale Street Could Talk (1974) and Morrison’s Jazz (1992) are classics in American literature. Both focus on crime and romance, and both feature music and the soundtrack of the modern city. Written twenty years apart, Beale Street was published in the 1970s during the Black Arts Movement, while Jazz’s release in the early-1990s followed Morrison’s publication of Beloved and came a year before she won the Nobel Prize in Literature in…

Antonio Malik Pitti

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