Synopses & Reviews
Darryl Pinckney is the author of a novel, High Cotton, published in 1992, and, in the Alain Locke Lecture Series, Out There: Mavericks of Black Literature (2002). A frequent contributor to The New York Review of Books, he wrote the texts for Robert Wilson’s productions of The Forest (1988) and Time Rocker (1995) and made the adaptation for Wilson’s production of Virginia Woolf’s Orlando (1989). In 1994, he received the Harold D. Vursell Award for Distinguished Prose from the American Academy of Arts and Letters and in 2013 an Award in Literature, also from the Academy. He is at work on a history of African-American literature in the 20th century. He lives in New York City.
"The tactics have changed since the days when an 'all-white school board in fired 32 black teachers who'd applied to register,' and when 'no blacks were registered to vote' in a Mississippi county 'that was 81% black,' but as novelist and essayist Pinckney (High Cotton) observes, there are now 'new means by which to achieve the old aim: voter exclusion.' Pinckney conveys, calmly and lucidly, what this portends for American democracy. Other themes are embedded in his observations about the ballot: the impact of Obama's presidency, which encompasses both his profound symbolic significance and the unfulfilled promise of a post-racial society; a purposeful and moving tribute to Pinckney's parents and their generation's engagement with civil rights; and the changes that have occurred since the Voting Rights Act of 1965, the 'most important piece of civil-rights litigation since the Fifteenth Amendment.' The emergence of new forms of discrimination include 'gerrymanderings, redrawing districts, or at-large voting instead of district-by-district voting,' all 'in the direction of trying to reduce the impact of the minority vote.' Pinckney's book, which is the outgrowth of a lecture, is much like Doctor Who's TARDIS: it appears small on the outside, but a capacious and mind-opening experience awaits within." Publishers Weekly (Starred Review) Copyright PWxyz, LLC. All rights reserved.
Darryl Pinckney is the author of a novel, High Cotton, and, in the Alain Locke Lecture Series, Out There: Mavericks of Black Literature. He lives in New York City.
Darryl Pinckney, a longtime contributor to The New York Review of Books, is the author of a novel, High Cotton, and Out There: Mavericks of Black Literature. He has worked for Robert Wilson on various theatrical projects, most recently an adaptation of Daniil Kharms’s The Old Woman.
About the Author
Darryl Pinckney, a frequent contributor to The New York Review of Books, is the author of a novel, High Cotton, and Out There: Mavericks of Black Literature. He lives in New York City.