James Baldwin Biography | Author of Sonny's Blues

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Born in New York City in 1924, James Baldwin grew up in the city's Harlem section, which was then the center of black intellectual and cultural life in America. By 1938, while attending DeWitt Clinton High School in the Bronx, he began to preach at the Fireside Pentecostal Assembly. His early theological training echoes in the religious themes and allusions that appear in his work. By 1944, however, he had renounced the ministry and moved to Greenwich Village, where he met Richard Wright and many other important writers and artists of the tune.

It was also at this time that he began to write seriously. As the beneficiary of numerous fellowships during the late 1940s, he was able to move to Paris, France, and apply himself to his writing. In 1953 his novel Go Tell It on the Mountain appeared. Over the next few years he produced a number of plays, novels...

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This section contains 449 words
(approx. 2 pages at 400 words per page)
Buy the Sonny's Blues Study Guide
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Sonny's Blues from Short Stories for Students. ©2005-2006 Thomson Gale, a part of the Thomson Corporation. All rights reserved.