Gorilla, My Love Criticism

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"Gorilla, My Love," the title story of Bambara's first short story collection, has been universally singled out for praise since the volume, which has never been out of print, was published in 1972. Critics have appreciated Bambara's ear for the urban African American speech of her female protagonist/narrators—a voice that only infrequently had been captured so accurately. Nancy Hargrove, in an essay in The Southern Quarterly, writes that "one is immediately struck by . . . her faithful reproduction of black dialect. Her first-person narrators speak conversationally and authentically." A decade later, Ruth Elizabeth Burks explored the author's language in an essay called "From Baptism to Resurrection: Toni Cade Bambara and the Incongruity of Language." She heard Bambara's protagonists speaking in a "narrative voice reminiscent of the Negro spirituals with their strongly marked rhythms and highly graphic descriptions. Standard English is not so much put aside as displaced by constant...

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This section contains 339 words
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Buy the Gorilla, My Love Study Guide
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Gorilla, My Love from Short Stories for Students. ©2005-2006 Thomson Gale, a part of the Thomson Corporation. All rights reserved.