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Black nature : four centuries of African American nature poetry  Cover Image Book Book

Black nature : four centuries of African American nature poetry

Summary: This book is the first anthology to focus on nature writing by African American poets, a genre that until now has not commonly been counted as one in which African American poets have participated. Black poets have a long tradition of incorporating treatments of the natural world into their work, but it is often read as political, historical, or protest poetry, anything but nature poetry. This is particularly true when the definition of what constitutes nature writing is limited to work about the pastoral or the wild. The author has selected 180 poems from 93 poets that provide unique perspectives on American social and literary history to broaden our concept of nature poetry and African American poetics. This collection features major writers such as Phillis Wheatley, Rita Dove, Yusef Komunyakaa, Gwendolyn Brooks, Sterling Brown, Robert Hayden, Wanda Coleman, Natasha Trethewey, and Melvin B. Tolson as well as newer talents such as Douglas Kearney, Major Jackson, and Janice Harrington. Included are poets writing out of slavery, Reconstruction, the Harlem Renaissance, the Black Arts Movement, and late twentieth- and early twenty-first-century African American poetic movements. It also brings to the fore a neglected and vital means of considering poetry by African Americans and nature-related poetry as a whole.

Item details

  • ISBN: 9780820332772 (cloth : alk. paper)
  • ISBN: 0820332771 (cloth : alk. paper)
  • ISBN: 9780820334318 (pbk. : alk. paper)
  • ISBN: 0820334316 (pbk. : alk. paper)
  • Physical Description: print
    xxxv, 387 p. ; 23 cm.
  • Publisher: Athens : University of Georgia Press, c2009.

Contents / Notes

Bibliography, etc. Note: Includes bibliographical references and indexes.
Formatted Contents Note: Cycle one: Just looking. We must be careful / Ed Roberson -- Earth is a living thing / Lucille Clifton -- Mountains of California, part I / Al Young -- Mountain road ends here / G.E. Patterson -- Queen Anne's lace / June Jordan -- On summer / George Moses Horton -- Yellow jacket / Nikki Giovanni -- Eclogue at twilight / Yusef Komunyakaa -- Ruellia noctiflora / Marilyn Nelson -- Evening primrose / Rita Dove -- Night-blooming cercus / Robert Hayden -- September night / George Marion McClellan -- Sweet enough ocean, cotton / Thylias Moss -- Metamorphism / Helene Johnson -- Brown girl's nature poem: provincetown / Toni Wynn -- What more? / Gerald Barrax Sr. -- Be careful / Ed Roberson -- Watching blackbirds turn to ghosts / Rachel Eliza Griffiths -- If winter comes, can spring? / Alvin Aubert -- 31 words * prose poems [#12] / Rita Shockley.
Subject: Nature Poetry
American poetry African American authors
American poetry African American authors History and criticism

Currently available copies

  • 7 out of 9 copies are currently available at PINES. (Show)
  • 2 out of 2 copies are currently available at Athens Regional Library System.


  • 1 current hold on 9 total copies.
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Call Number / Copy Notes Barcode Shelving Location Status  
Athens Regional Library System:
      Athens-Clarke County Library
NONFIC 808.8193 BLACK ( Send Text)
31001001787820 NONFICTION Available
Athens Regional Library System:
      Watkinsville/Oconee County Library
NONFIC 808.8193 BLACK ( Send Text)
31001003410348 NONFICTION Available

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