Thomas H. Wirth, a close friend of Nugent's during the last years of the artist's life, has assembled a selection of Nugent's most important writings, paintings, and drawings-works mostly unpublished or scattered in rare and obscure publications and collected here for the first time. Wirth has written an introduction providing biographical information about Nugent's life and situating his art in relation to the visual and literary currents which influenced him. A foreword by Henry Louis Gates Jr. emphasizes the importance of Nugent for African American history and culture.
Publisher: Duke University Press
Number of pages: 312
Weight: 553 g
Dimensions: 235 x 156 x 24 mm
"One of the key figures in both the creative world of the Harlem Renaissance and the complex underground world of gay culture, Bruce Nugent at last speaks here for himself."from the foreword, by Henry Louis Gates Jr.
"Gay Rebel of the Harlem Renaissance marks the first time so much information about Nugent has been collected between two covers . . . . [T]he sheer volume of Nugent's work, some published for the first time here, would warrant such a collection." -- Terrance Heath * Lambda Book Report *
"A must-have. For students of African-American literature, it is the missing piece of the jigsaw puzzle that comprises black history in the 20th century. For lovers of gay literature, it is a rare glimpse of early work that does not share the same morbidity that so often characterized Nugent's Caucasian counterparts." -- Anthony Glassman * Gay People's Chronicle *
"[F]ascinating. . . . This anthology of [Nugent's] artistic output is of major importance." -- Raoul Abdul * Amsterdam News *
"Rebel offers a much-needed fleshing out of Nugent's contribution to the Harlem Renaissance. In addition to an informative introduction by its editor, Rebel collects, along with the few previously published pieces, a great deal of unpublished (and sometimes incomplete) writing. . . . Gay Rebel of the Harlem Renaissance provides a more vivid glimpse of queer Harlem than has emerged in any other writing by its inhabitants. More importantly, this collection offers us a language of same-sex desire and community largely freed from our contemporary assumptions about such things." -- Mason Stokes * Callaloo *
"[A] new collection of the writings and drawings of Richard Bruce Nugent, that most famously 'unfamous' member of the Harlem Renaissance. . . . Nugent's story has come to be recognized as the first affirmative, unblushing statement of homosexual desire in African-American literature-thus the appeallation 'gay rebel.'" -- Robert Reid-Pharr * Chronicle Review *
"Richard Bruce Nugent, one of the lesser-known members of the Renaissance, had the distinction of being the only openly gay member of its ranks. . . . Wirth's lengthy introduction nicely lays the groundwork for understanding Nugent's life, his literary forebears, and his influences in the Harlem Renaissance. . . . Gay Rebel also includes a generous collection of both black-and-white and glossy color reproductions of Nugent's drawings and paintings. . . . This book is a fascinating, well-researched, and loving tribute to an artist worth remembering."
-- Martha E. Stone * Gay & Lesbian Review *
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