Slave Ship Criticism

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Baraka has been a leading figure in the development of African-American literature and thought during the twentieth century. Kimberly W. Benston states that Baraka "is one of the most intriguing, controversial, and enigmatic figures in modern letters." Benston goes on to say that "Baraka entered the American consciousness not merely as a writer but as an event, a symbolic figure somehow combining the craft and insights of Euro-American radicalism with the rebellious energies of young Afro-America." William J. Harris describes the extensive influence of Baraka on American literature: "Acting as an energetic artist-critic-spokesman, Baraka almost single-handedly changed both the nature and the form of post-World War II Afro-American literature. In addition to being a prime influence on other poets and dramatists of his time, Baraka has also created an original body of work that belongs in the forefront of innovative avant-garde writing, regardless of ethnic background. As a...

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This section contains 1,158 words
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Slave Ship from Drama for Students. ©2005-2006 Thomson Gale, a part of the Thomson Corporation. All rights reserved.