Notes of a Native Son Setting & Symbolism

This Study Guide consists of approximately 46 pages of chapter summaries, quotes, character analysis, themes, and more - everything you need to sharpen your knowledge of Notes of a Native Son.
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Harlem

The essay “The Harlem Ghetto” is a journalistic account of the psychological climate in Harlem. Baldwin describes the Negro press and the relationship between African Americans and Jews in order to describe the ghetto environment. Harlem is taken as the epicenter of all northern African American culture. Rarely does Baldwin speak in any detail about African American communities outside of Harlem. Harlem is basically the background in all of these essays and it is featured prominently in “Notes of a Native Son,” when Baldwin describes a mob outburst in Harlem on the night before his father’s funeral.

Paris

Baldwin moved to France when he was only 24, in 1948. Though he returned to the United States repeatedly, he spent much of his adult life in Paris. Three of the essays in the third section of the book deal with questions of identity raised when African Americans and white...

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This section contains 230 words
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