Nathan Irvin Huggins was born in 1927 in Chicago, Illinois and lost life’s battle to cancer at his home in Cambridge, Massachusetts in 1989. Although he lived a short life of only 62 years, he made significant contributions through his literary works and instructorship His book “Harlem Renaissance” expresses his most passionate idea of exposing the truth of the African-American Experience in the United States
A central theme or idea presented in his works is to illuminate important areas in black American History. It is evident that Huggins had a “heart” for the black man. Consultant Educator Editor Writer Scholar
Black Odyssey: The Afro-American Ordeal in Slavery Pantheon, 1977 A historical narrative that has been noted for its attempt to communicate the personal impact of slavery on slaves . “ It is this aspect of Black Odyssey that Huggins ultimately stressed. “Research has enlightened us to see [slaves] not only as victims but also as builders of the world they lived in commented Theodore Rosengarten in New Republic. (Gale Literary Databases)
Slave and Citizen: The Life of Fredrick Douglass Edited by Handlin, Little, Brown, 1980) Marc Pachter wrote in the Washington Post Book World that Huggins’s brief, elegant study of the great abolitionist stops us in the middle of our lazy genuflection. We encounter a life whose central drama is not an escape from slavery but patronage where heroism comes from struggle not only with oppression, but success .
Additional Works (Gale Literary Databases) <ul><li>Protestants against Poverty Greenwood Press, 1971 </li></ul><ul><li>(Author of Forward) Marina Wikramanayake, A World in Shadow: The Free Black in Antebellum South Carolina, University of S. Carolina Press, 1973 </li></ul><ul><li>(Editor) W. E. B. DuBois, Writings (annotated), Library of America, 1986 </li></ul><ul><li>Afro-American Studies: A Reoport to the Ford Foundation, Ford Foundation, 1985 </li></ul><ul><li>(Editor) Voices from the Harlem Renaissance, Oxford University Press, 1976 </li></ul>
Nathan Irvin Huggins: The African –American Experience This presentation will highlight his most noted piece of work “ Harlem Renaissance ” Updated version, Oxford University Press, 1971
What was the “Harlem Renaissance” An African American cultural movement of the 1920s and early 1930s that was centered in the Harlem neighborhood of New York City. Variously known as the New Negro movement, the New Negro Renaissance, and the Negro Renaissance, the movement emerged toward the end of World War I in 1918, blossomed in the mid- to late 1920s, and then faded in the mid-1930s. The Harlem Renaissance marked the first time that mainstream publishers and critics took African American literature seriously and that African American literature and arts attracted significant attention from the nation at large. Although it was primarily a literary movement, it was closely related to developments in African American music, theater, art, and politics. http://encarta.msn.com/encyclopedia_761566483/harlem_renaissance.html
Langston Hughes Claude McKay Key contributors and influences of the Harlem Renaissance
Huggins begins his book in Harlem: Although Harlem is not to be the focus of this book, but rather a lens which one might see a new view, white men and black men unknowingly dependent in their work to shape American character and culture (p.12)
Post-War Liberation As racism began to revive and the Klu Klux Kan found white support, and violence increased against blacks, a metamorphosis in the black man would evolve that even white Americans would have to acknowledge as having a profound impact on Negros, but American culture as a whole.
Harlem: A “melting pot”—a spirit of emancipation, innovation, and newness
Harlem: A highlight of the contributions of African-Americans and the birthing of Jazz Music
… and violence increased against blacks, a metamorphosis in the black man would evolve that even white Americans would have to acknowledge as having a profound impact on Negros, but American culture as a whole.
The Harlem Renaissance: The African-American Experience—not just for “us”, but for all, an emergence of …