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    Revealing “the struggle and the dream”: Sterling A. Brown's role in producing An American Dilemma: The Negro Problem and Modern Democracy

    Beecher, Ruth (2021) Revealing “the struggle and the dream”: Sterling A. Brown's role in producing An American Dilemma: The Negro Problem and Modern Democracy. Journal of African American Studies , ISSN 1559-1646. (In Press)

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    Abstract

    This article investigates the role of poet, critic and vanguard Black intellectual Sterling A. Brown in the production of An American Dilemma (Myrdal 1944), a foundational book that would influence national policy in relation to race for at least fifty years after its publication. Commissioned to deliver an analysis of “the Negro in American culture,” Brown set out to create a work of integrity that would convey the richness of African American cultural traditions and contribute to a balanced appraisal of their overarching experiences. The Carnegie Corporation selected outsider Swedish economist Gunnar Myrdal to lead the study to ensure an unbiased analysis of the “Negro problem.” This apparent commitment to impartiality obscures the reality of the impact of race on the book’s construction. These dynamics had a particularly forceful impact on Brown, the only member of Myrdal’s team with a deep understanding of the historical development, aesthetics and politics of the African American cultural tradition.

    Metadata

    Item Type: Article
    Keyword(s) / Subject(s): African American culture, race relations, social sciences, history
    School: School of Social Sciences, History and Philosophy > History, Classics and Archaeology
    Depositing User: Ruth Beecher
    Date Deposited: 20 Jul 2021 05:37
    Last Modified: 21 Jul 2021 13:08
    URI: https://eprints.bbk.ac.uk/id/eprint/44964

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