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Artistic ambassadors : literary and international representation of the new negro era

Author: Brian Russell Roberts
Publisher: Charlottesville : University of Virginia Press, 2013.
Edition/Format:   eBook : Document : State or province government publication : EnglishView all editions and formats
Database:WorldCat
Summary:
During the first generation of black participation in U.S. diplomacy in the late nineteenth and early twentieth centuries, a vibrant community of African American writers and cultural figures worked as U.S. representatives abroad. Through the literary and diplomatic dossiers of figures such as Frederick Douglass, James Weldon Johnson, Archibald and Angelina Grimké, W.E.B. Du Bois, Ida Gibbs Hunt, and Richard  Read more...
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Genre/Form: Electronic books
Criticism, interpretation, etc
Additional Physical Format: Print version:
Artistic ambassadors.
Charlottesville : University of Virginia Press, 2013
(DLC) 2012032767
(OCoLC)808810664
Material Type: Document, Government publication, State or province government publication, Internet resource
Document Type: Internet Resource, Computer File
All Authors / Contributors: Brian Russell Roberts
ISBN: 9780813933696 0813933692 1283902346 9781283902342
OCLC Number: 824539733
Description: 1 online resource (245 pages).
Contents: The Negro beat: "distinguished colored men" and their representative characters --
Passing into diplomacy: US Consul James Weldon Johnson and the autobiography of an ex-colored man --
Diplomatic and modern representations: George Washington Ellis, Henry Francis Downing, and the myth of Africa --
Metonymies of absence and presence: Angelina Weld Grimke's Rachel --
Diplomats but ersatz: the hip-to-matic Pan-Africanism of W.E.B. Du Bois and Ida Gibbs Hunt --
The practice of hip-to-macy in the age of public diplomacy: Richard Wright's Indonesian travels --
Epilogue: hipster diplomacy's fall and Barack Obama's forms of things unknown.
Responsibility: Brian Russell Roberts.

Abstract:

During the first generation of black participation in U.S. diplomacy in the late nineteenth and early twentieth centuries, a vibrant community of African American writers and cultural figures worked as U.S. representatives abroad. Through the literary and diplomatic dossiers of figures such as Frederick Douglass, James Weldon Johnson, Archibald and Angelina Grimké, W.E.B. Du Bois, Ida Gibbs Hunt, and Richard Wright, Brian Roberts shows how the intersection of black aesthetic trends and U.S. political culture both Americanized and internationalized the trope of the New Negro. This decades-long relationship began during the days of Reconstruction, and it flourished as U.S. presidents courted and rewarded their black voting constituencies by appointing black men as consuls and ministers to such locales as Liberia, Haiti, Madagascar, and Venezuela. These appointments changed the complexion of U.S. interactions with nations and colonies of color; in turn, state-sponsored black travel gave rise to literary works that imported international representation into New Negro discourse on aesthetics, race, and African American culture. Beyond offering a narrative of the formative dialogue between black transnationalism and U.S. international diplomacy, Artistic Ambassadors also illuminates a broader literary culture that reached both black and white America as well as the black diaspora and the wider world of people of color. In light of the U.S. appointments of its first two black secretaries of state and the election of its first black president, this complex representational legacy has continued relevance to our understanding of current American internationalism.

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What makes Roberts's book so compelling in the context of studies of black transnationalism is his focus on figures... who were caught in the intricate nexus of acquiescence to the state and, at Read more...

 
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