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: ~ ..June 16, 1942
Dear Mr. Osborne:
A friend sent as your interesting article on "The begro's
Contribution to Yiction" in the June 1 issue of advancee". We
were both surprised thar~t you made `no mention of Lora Neale
Haraton who in the opinion of mnany is today the leading Hegro
writer in the U'nited States. Miss Huraton was born in Estonville,
the first. incorporated ;egro village in America, which adjoins
Winter Park on the northwest. She atiltendiec the Hlungerford
School at Eatonvfll~e. She studied at Howrard University, received
her Bachelor's Degree at. Barnard College, abudied soolology three
years an a Fellowship under Dr. Frans Boas at Columbia. She
received the award of a Gugenheim Fellowaship in 1936 and it was
renewed for 1937. She has taught at the North Carolina College
for Regroes and is now working with Paramount at Hollyw~ood. She
is a member of the American Folklore Society, American BAthropolo-
gical Society, American Ethn61ogical Society. Miss H~uraton's two
novLel, "Jonah's Gourd Vine" and "Their Eyes lere Watching God"
were both on the recommended list of the Book-af-the-Month Club.
Her two volumes of Paegro folklore, "Mules and Men" and "Tell My
Horse" are original contributions. her latest book is entitled
"Mloses, Man of the ]Kountain" and her Autobiography "Tracks on a
Dusty Road" will be published shortly. SIurely here is aqwriter
worthy of being~ included in any survey of the Negro's contribution
Miss Buratona is one of the few Negro writers who is listed in
"~ho's who in Amerioa".
Vlery c ordijally your s,
Edwin 0. Grover
Mr. Ear1 C. Oaborne
June I, 1942
probably Dachau. (Later news reports in
the daily press announce his return to his
home for imprikonment.:l The charge
against Berggray was that he inrpire-d the
Easter Sundayv mass resicnation of 1,1110 pai-
tl~rs and [hat ~he w;rore rhe documsnt **Fiun-
datiorn o: rhce Church" whliih M as readj by
the pastors to e...plain their resignations,
During the w\hoile at the occupilc:an of his
little country, B~iho bop ~agrat has bee~n the
personificatio~n of its herroic :ruggle for friee.
domr. Those~ of ui vbohi, aicr klnown and
workel~d wirh him know\? how~\ deep and true
is his passionate~ lotalry toI the ciuse at
C'hrlrt. If he i.:.ins the otherj \ ho hi.e
accep~tedl mutrd.-.m in tl hij titanic struggle
it v:ill be but the ILogical ourcornme oft';hat
has ha3Ppened since 19-111 broiught Hirle-r to
Nona.Commr nutng on does heroiism the
Nov ru i:;! T~n:-< 53ays eci[Criall.: "It. there
is "~-l-o'l.:ki n he-~cme-~r n ing cou r j, th'is i.
it. A loldieir hs: armsr in his3 hand. Thnes
men had none. The Naz~is and their crea.
rure. Quiiling, csn imprioon, itair;~, torure
and kill themn at \! Ill. They~ dlon't giv.e in.
From all ovetr Europe----exen fro:m Germany
--comen similar slrorie~. Unonquerrble
sojuls fight eve~rywher-e. Mlen are k~illed but
ALmerican M~issionaries in Japanese
OcTcupied China W'ell Treated
AJ fairly v? ides urrvel of man; iesrn '.:hicih
h3.'e cljme through cabled repo.rts in rou~nd-
ab-out waysj rhe:l.re that in rhe mal~in A~miri-
can miiionaries in the colactal area oL
China h-ate be~en ** ell treated. Ma~ny are
irnerned in cerrain miciion instiiurians
otlheri in their ow\n homelis. ,Somei are even
91llowed~~ to carr! on their wo.rkrl. Suc~h fulnds
as wereT in Chinese banks in contradjiisne-
tion t'rom fojregn--i. c. Brritih or Am-rican
ba.nks;-hwe. beecn I1i aleft 2libl to them~.
Curt.:Ill.u Ly nougllh. malny; Americlnj in rhe-se
3reas unde-r lapinesic military iionrroll h3ve
faredj beercr than Amenrican citize;ns of IJa-
does, prod'iuce~ jomei add cointradlictions !
Thetre were no casulties~ among A~miriian
miciion.mesr~ in the~ PhilippinesWht as
happeined to the: rather lairLge group timerr is
still, howe'e~r, unckar.1. Some of m\ own
former clleaguci of: lhe North China M~ij.
sion of the Ame-rican Board, caught in
Manila by' the outbreak of hostlihtes, are
reported as interned in a mission institution
there. Th~e newr plans for service to these
and other interned fo~reigners through neu-
trals on the stall oft rhe Yl. At. C. A. seem
to indicate a ...ay in wrhiih conrtac may be
establlshed and living funds at least trans-
Interpreter to "'Flying Tigers" Hears
Some "Loud Sp~eakiing"
Interprete-rs being neidedj for the Ameri.
can aviatorj-klnor~. n as the Flying Tlgers--
defending the~ Burmna Road haice been found
amo:ng itudenrs of~ some of the Chiriitian
u~nl.crsities. One isuch, described as a
"quic~t. modist iort. rather formal and ele-
gan"[' was iniorme~d by hij mission reacher
thui rhe \:ordi and ~3. 9, lf these American
a.iaturl ngistl be 6trange to him but that
their healrIL were1 n arm a3nd friendlly. He
reported to his teaichr as fo~llowMs: "I am
Inrtrpreter for Lt. L. He~ is w;irh good
leart anJ lou~d slpeaker. In 6rrs ii e mmuute
ujnve~risatin, he rcmarked GoJ~mit thriic.
I understand lour meanings."
The Negro's Contribution to Fiction
B!' EA~RL C. OSBORNE -- - -
Lo~l rcrnt s! iureJ is o rst Incei~rn (cir
i ilirelg n in~I thh a 'I I t !shows t~~ he iLymp- !
ramofl a-l rne, ilji ned tre m h.ld, its more
spri:r, it ope !l despair..! The comperhcnt
no-~i-J che atli anI eic.J rir an \nispenabl
f ir. mo~re .:.f rh c-.ul Tit dl ninercli nr c ntury
Ene lc~l SnJ tr..n Cric DiI nun iike:n !is than fm i
a3? 1.uke lin erram c oinspl e, utn t h.:r rr ickne s 3i
our~l~t~i d of~ Ne'.\ lock City fro 'hi~l,.:0
tidj 'lso / 8..li':/::. i .110=n' Than f~prom all
tal'chcc I':in the?.ni Lettha\i Enrs.It mst
6r trouc .-her!- csr ci.t draIIncasrs und noel
isnjt an hadcl mnot.a or cnoi much of mpahcar
spnirnuern crgicr in.Jeunciatinhe rl ygauIJ
higaue icean more depi ndis fel or e ac.:u.
This perin ipk msounarye C, Dr.mh~ Lcatk
unerso etee andngu the mrin Negr... H et u
will planr aim gret deal oft .ahbe iniporm o
thto. 11'e Ride!. ndEisismoeemns Embre -
Berot, on: .ln:<=.: bout mue b ill ne= c unhJcr
the Neer s hlj a contribution of hi* ol!n to
makr to thle gencrjl we'lfare, which ii a .
great as1 our coJn[trl~lib, nan The~re is dan;er
that a religiiou book~l abou~lt thC coloredi race
miy cultltate 3 spiri[ of condece~niion, the
\tr! things it doesi nor wrish to do. In order
to aleguard our minds againit this attiitule
it ii well to lookl into w:hat the Negaro has
cnrltri sutc .
hires Ruthl Seabury says thar~t when she
lande~d in ILo'ndon a few\~ yers3 ago, one of~
the Br t things ther sludi-nts requecrced of: her
was~. \'11 ) Li o t:achi uIS to sing Niegro clpinr-
ualj W:he~n !he inqIuired the reiaon wih~,
the! cjid, 'ir noE the Ncgro spririual the one
dlaincure contrrburion that Amcrica his
made to Ch-rirrianir\?" Suih an outlook; is
intcresting to m'Y thle lenit. But, afrtr all,
in rhis dj:. of' rle radio. v~e are fairly' well
acquainted w!ith the spiritual. But Ihere
iis one eidcl that ii co:mparatis ely unk~nown,
that ii the reild of fiction. The nov~\el :;bout
the Negro~ and rhe ne'.:cl i;! the Neg~ro~ de.
mands ourT au5ntion if' we are to3 havr an
adequate underr~nnJing of oulr col~red
Scane tweinty yeirs ago~ B'niam'in Bravlley,
professor of Englih at How ard Unliersity,
The Necra in hii probkrnlr and srvivincs offers
to Americ/n writcrr the createst opporturnle that
could possribh: be m\en to thim today:. It ii com-
manl) agreed that onl! one otherr large question-
thatmof th ae redoi nsi c ja@ i ann laIre is ad
even this girrat inlue fals5 to poisess quite the
appeal oi-ered by the Negro! Erom the social stand.
point. One can onl! imagine what a v'ictor Hugo,
deutched and philorophlcal, would hate done
wabl such a rheme in a novel. nB'hn w~e see
w~hlt actully: has been done--how often in the
c~ui~e of til:ol n a writer~ has preached a sermon
c~r sho~uted a po~litiial rcrd. or vented hls splcen--
I".e 31r not exCavCI pll~jroud the art of novel-
trnn of it rai caecn develo~pala Inr niti
traced.. ifor comed:.*, For the subtle portrs~al of
all the relanoni of man wvith hij fellowmmn,,
for fairb and hope and los\e and rorr.:.w\. And
v~er, wablh the Call \\'ar fil;., sear in th. distane,
not one naJl or one rhort t.~:.r; of the lrin rank
hej found .ts in ~irmano in this Ereat theme. In-
rradl ct' ruch woirk wie blase conristently had
traditional rjake po~llocal racts, and lurid melo-
Dr. B~3rawley ends his essay! by saying,
''Even now, hioweve~r, there are signs of
benecr thiings." Some? of those better things
have come to~ pas.s.
The mnesllc at George H~'. Cable, Joel
Cha~ndler Hirrir. Thomas Nclson Page and
Thomals Diaon hat.e gone into history;. Of
co~urie one doesj nojt put these w~riteri in the
sameC claii. GeorCe' H'. Cable w'rote with
siome jimpathy snd understanding, wvhereas
Dixon rote un Ih byste-ria, within the sound
of baiing~ bloodhoundr and the smell of
burning hlesh. Joril Chandlir Harris wrote
rlhe Unle~rr Rome~l Slo,! F. Uncle Remus is
a ch~armlng old Neigror w:ho tells stories to
thel children. They are a kind of superior
bersimelr story. Among, the more recent
wlir~iers one \\ Ihes thiat Ellen Glasgow:, w\ith
he!ir the- powers" of Perception, might wrrite
the cla3Ssic Negro nove~l. But M~iss Glasgow,
"'h3S taken the Negro for granted as an insti-
tutlon that alw!aysj has existed and always
w~ill exist. as a hewer~ of wood and a drawer~
of water. from the first flush of creation to the
sounding of the trump of doom." It is an
attitude altogether too common.
In 1933 Thomas S. Stribling's The Store
won the Pulltze, prize. The South felt that
A D VTA NCE
tha~t it borders on poetry. It ought to be a
co~mpulsoryr miijionary reading in all our
James Weldoc~n johnson, killed in a lamen-
tabrle ac~:iciden, was5 the peer of' Dr. Du~Bois.
He rFpent his last yea~r. as profeisor at Fisk
Uni=er-sy,, but f'or many years served the
NcEro through the N. A. A. C. P. His auto-
b~i.-.graphyi), .'o'.y Tb:< il' sy, is 3 notable piece
Ilt workII. In his one nia;el, Thle Antloblog-
r.writy of!: an -Coloredp A~l.:n, Dr. Johrnlon
hasi v.0.e~n mucih o:f his ow:n story~. It is the
stor! of a boy ab o \1as3 born w~hir e but finds
ou! hie is blaik. The~re i?: hiirahe and
tragdydl and in the end he rinds the solution
of his problem in "'pan:ing." But it is not
a iolurnan foir o-ne night at Carnegie H3ll
he heard Bookecr T. Washiington, and he
cannot reprc s the thought that, after all, he
hni chosen the les er part, and sold his birth-
rlgght f-or a mess of' polttae.
The 5ir:i has \rirttn a number of noicis,
among thecm. Thatr I. Costlusio', P'!:.n.' liun,
and TheI Ciidu':crry! Treei. OI' th-e three I
think;. The;r.P i, Conf.*azovI the ninet[ and
strongestt. Joe~I l arshall was a caterecr. He
ga:t his break ub en theysent al Ls ~ ithewadow~n
toj Ric~hmond toj get him to lir a banquLet for
President Grant. It gate Jodl a sense of
greatness. He mor ed to Newi Y'ork. joanna,
Jol's daughter, had a different idea about
greatness. Shs is brilliant and riome-thing of
a snob. She drshkesr common, stupid people.
But she has character and a strong wvill.
Thecre ii peter Bye, dee~ply~ in love w*ith
Joanna. B~ut theie two do not always under-
stand one another. There is Ma~ggie Mlay,
v! eak; bur gojod, w\ith a passion for respecor-
bility. She mirries a man who turns out to
be as rmbler and id~e tumbles in forr Mlaggie.
Theire is centullon bur lore brings order out
of it all.
It vI as during the 'twentiesr that there de-
\e~loped in thle Uinlted States a tylpe oL litera-
ture calledl, "Rcalim." The Negro writer
of~ Fri.,~-n and poetrry was atfr~ect by this
passing moodl. A4 dark skiln is no protection
against rhe ''ume spirit." He forjook the
terandi ofL the o~ld Southern plantation, its
mamrn-y song. its "C~o'n Pone Hor,." f'or the
strkr rcill.y at' a l.nching. "'And Little lads,
Isa~chrs tha3t were to be. Danced round the
dreadial thing in Gendish glee."
In thil: iiihool belongs Claude. Mlc~~y w~ith
his nos el, Home)1 ?J Harl~;nt, Co~untee Cullen
n\ Ith. Oct: iI' dy o He;::-ev and Jeaner Toomer,
writh Ca=:l. There 3re also the names of: Eric
H\'slt~nd and R~udolph FIsher. If: one wriihes
to reaklle the dlrkerene betweei-n the old and
ncrw school of \rilterS, there is nothing better
than V'. F. Cah~erton's, Ant1:hology of Ameri-
cain :'g5o Liter-turel.
Amlong the outitanding w~riters in this
group ii Wa'lrrer W~hite-, brother of George
W\hlre at' the A\. I\I. A., w; ho combines some
of the b trler quaildtes of both schools. In
site[ O~f Lhe iact tllat there i5 propaganda in
his nee~ls,~ one feelj it is jurtified on the basis
of his \rle a~nd sound know\le~dge in that
pa'ricular ticid. He has wrrirren two novecls,
Fi~~~ght. and 7.:Fr nteF The latter
is the story o~f Dr. Kecnneth Harper, \who, hav-
ing studied medicine in the North, comes
back; to his hiome- in th~e So~uth to pracue.
He beclievesj the South w~ill recognize ability
and service and ikill e:en in a colo~red doctor.
He scolTs at the doubts of his brother, Bab.
But little by little Dr. Harper is disillusioned.
Jurne I, 9-P
the novel wras an insult, giving a twisted and
distorted view\ of' Southern life. But just as
such a facr-finding book: as, Middictirown~ ga.e
backing to Lev ij' Alai'n Str~eet, so thie eco-
nomic facts as revealed in the share cropping
situation, and the pre'lJudie and bigotry as
rev'ealed In the Scottsbo~re trial, givesj solid
ground for Scribling's, Ther .Store. The ex-
ploiration of Negro and p~oor wr hire are pla)ed
up in this itory.
5cas!rt 5:iste- Alaty by lulii Peterklin, and
Dee~p D.li- Rirser, by Robeirt Rvice, armong
later no=.el will demand )iour arention.
BEfo're pariing to booksr by) the Negro, there
is one other story I mlujt mlentio~n, Zely~, ~y
Mlary W\hite Oringron. Forr many~ years
MIlss Os.ingto~n \as chairman of the Board
of Directors of the N. A.A. C. P. Zete is
a beautiful story and so simple yolu w~ond~r
how; it hold y~ou so. It is the str at~ nl onely
httle Ezekiel Lee at a colored industrial school
in the South. Here ii th-e black bo!, stright
from Africa, strong phsically, serious
minded, wiho t3ake Zeke under hij wiing.
Here is Randolf, w~ho i, at rchool for a good
time, and breaks the ruler aind leads Zeke
astray. There ii Pidge fromt Harlemr, who
thought he wasj funny and w\arted1 his time.
There is the Principal's daughter, w:ho:m Zcke
admires from a distan~c. It ii too bad that
M~iss Ovington has not told us more about
The first Negro writer of ficion to gain
attention in thlj country~ was3 ChdrleS Hl.
Chesmutt. Born in Cle~cland, Ohio oin June
'1:1, 1953, he became 2 rcho~ol teacher and
lay ye.iT In 1.58. he w\rote a Ser'ies oft rtries c
fo:r rhe, .-fla;wimc Alo*:l/*!!y, having largely to
dr w\ith the manner s ndl jup.-a-tiiloni oft his
p''ople. Th~se \were Isle-r brought together
rn a boor~k enttled, Tk; Co*:ju!rre li'o,,!;n. In
a letter that die vriter reiciried fro:m Dr.
DuLBoiS. he menriani only this one of Ches-
mulrt's books,;~ probaibly; beca~u e this r!as his
bestr piece of wo~:rk. Mlr. Ches;muu'ls othr Fc
Thar ,larrowo ~f Tradd?;o a, and The Colo~ne/'.<
The lirerary ge-niui of the Neg7ro race, WV.
E. B. Du~oij has w:riuein two. no -els5. Dark I
Pan!.ce-- andl Th.- Onectb of dIe .5d~ er F-ec.
Du~Bai,' novel gi- e yo~:u the impression of
readlng an ecoinomi: andl political tract in the
fo~rm of a na'.esl. It is 3 mild wayv of h'id-
dingi" pe'oPle inro reading !omething they
othcre ice could notr read. D~r. Du~oir is
primarly an essaiist, a poen, and a iociolog- -
ist ratherr than a no.elier. It' \ou iould1 see
him at his best you must re-ad, Th; Sonr!j of
S`.'.;dg Fo!:., a book ro rema-1rkable in styIe
ev ci-.1PLEs A. ~\IELLS
H\'ar has brolught many dangerous prow\lerr out into the open The threat toward our
way~ of lite as a democracy from some of these prowvlers is more dangerous than that of' war
itself. Wec demand that eterv one hate the japanee and Germanc, b~t w\e forgett that there
are a lot of people wrho can't control their hatreds. Every' day v~.e see accounts of the out-
bursts of these hatreds within the ranks of our demnocracy. Thei greedy; and unscrupulous
wvho are using the war for economic prow~ling alro lead inevitably toward economic disrup-
tion and chaos. WVe can only be prorected from these savage creeping thre-ars b-y an alert
w~atchful moral consciousness. In e\ery city, in every community the church is on guard.
If the church fails, no mjilary v'ictory can sale us. If religion does its part, nothing can
defeat us or destroy our way of life.
Y'ou might 13ay he ij converted from the phi-
loso:phy at Booker T. W~ashlngron to that of
W\. E. Duboli He sets himself to rth task
of: organizng thle Negro. whl-ichi mkaks him
Into aln inpop'ular and "bad nigge~." It Is
w~hli l- th dc];io-r is ~.ai.*.a on a trap that his
Incrle cister is arrracked by~ a gang of: hoodlums.
Young Bo~b indl::lrtes 1Ihe honor of his sictr -
by~\ iiiirlng these hoo:~dlumi jouin in cold
IWood-, The mo~:b ii sojon on the heels of the
!coung br.:.iberr. \.bo~ ii trrpped In a barn,
bach i: Iet on Ifue, but Bob jsates Iris lart
bulicrr for hlim~lf. In the end Dr. Halrper
himsei~lt' pais the supfreme pe~nalo y for Iri
interest In the \ elfare ofL hii peo~ple. It is
a 'i~id and powerful :tryr.and alrlhough the
propaganda ii deliberate. !o~u hate a feeling
Th-re !r ano~dxr narne \e must !jlke into
cojn~lSr~iderao a namep hailed by the critics
as an1 orurianding Negro noiebst, LanLgton
Hugrhes. Although Mlr. Hughesi i onl In
his thlrtles, he hai \rrltten hi s urobiography
undeLr thel utlz. 7,. 61 Sc.g e. He~re ir a story
fajr mo~re interesolng thain most notebl. rr.
Hughes~ writer~ this maruletcr~ for th-e net.,
rihool oL realliss:
in' .d yun~t col~r aitr ad trc~enorr
rcho vclthourrt ler c~r ihame. li-obstre people
are pleased wre 3re ElaJ. If the. pre nar. Ir does
not matter. We' k~na\\ re we are besouul. And
ujly tojo. Thie to~m-tom crles and the re-m-rom
bughi~b. lI colord peopki are pkascJL w.= Ire Fad.
11' the, 3re not, the-ir di;plea~lure does- not: matter
cub.:r. W~e build oulr tempksi ilr tolmorrowr,
strolng as w~e knnir bo~w, and w\e strlnd on the:
top of mounr~i.-,, iree witrhin ouric~es.
It lojki Ihke self-expresiion run w\ild.
famnilies fromn- their homcs and normal
occuLpatio-ns is a .astr tragedy, bur it is
not~ to, bei compari d fojr itrkr surrfering: and
cruelcy unhr w:hat has taken place in Po~llnd
and otherr pjrts of Euro~pe. In o~ur America
theC surgiial o~pe'ration is be~ing performed
reluctantly and \i th theC use at Siditi.s. In
Europe, it has bee~cn 3iccompjn l ied bysaitic
torture andl tramnpling upon Iustice and
mrc-iry. Note~rthelessi this jfapanese oiaius-
tion iis a ca1lamuv. Ho?.. far it can be trans.
mured into a blessing ij a perunent ques.
tron for ui wrhire Ame~rlcan Chrisians.
All1 higfh tragedy coni:.tj in a clash be.
tweecn duuesi; in rhii case5, beCtween protecioin
of the nation agaiinjt grate danger, and ma~in,
tenan.e or' consulrurional rights anJ hu.
manity. Many of the moit Inte~llige-nt and
delotedly patriotic Americani oC my ac.
qluainrance hold that the indiscrim-inate ex-
pu'lsion of the Japanese residents from hle
Wles[ CoasTt \!a not necessary fo~r national
secritily, and is likely, on the contrary, to
impair it; and furthermore, that denial OE
hearings. for the determination of loyalty or-
dislo~yalty;, ev;en for citizens, was a shocking
on. The issue has
cnt at least, and I
esit I breed distrust
ne \;hen truit and
ernrz ot the Armp's
nation, it should be
ie agentS in both
and rhat our Wesct
,rill fa~ce, seriojus
hout and treachery
y mujt eliminate
aboutt a1 moment's
I[ed allegations of
Pearl Harbor (al.
r ialatio~n of rhe Contitruti
been sca~led, fo~r the pres
only tou:h upon it lightly,
of c0ur Golernment at a [Lu
ilharit: are sa vital. In dcf
In -irrenie upon htota eiecu
adm!!ned that theree w!as
ii* e up.Ia:5'': e by' lapane
Ha.\anl and the Masinland,
Coasjt has fiCed. and s
dangerrs dattack from n:it
from witrhin.. Tihe A~rm
all possrible rijlks. and \?
delay. BEsides, th-e re~pea
jabougeF, by' Japaners at
though la~tr provesd to ~e
so e-nrageid popular feehng
3ll Japanese president,
alike, ".ere thought[ b' tl
imminent prall oft mob vi
We're wec not in a des'pe
argue thes case, but now I s
only~ eternal vigilance \r
ensroachments upon our
sumnmar; e:acuation a on
because of racial affiliatio
nation is a sound precede
Atlanuei Coast is thought to be' similarly
menaced by the Nazi1s, it wo.ruld be logical to
e*:acuare all citizens at German antecedents!
The Japanejs e\acusei themselves have
borne the b~lowr \;ith good grace. Certainly,
I should expc~t far more grumbling and re-
rentmcnt frorm any \r hire mlnority that might
haie been in their rhoes. One of the mort
engaging traits of the Japanese is their
equanimity and icheerulness under adversity.
W~ith the Buddhists, it is submission to
ka~rma; \\ith thie Christians, it is aceptanc~e
of~ Provildence, and a resol\e to turn
stumbling-block~s into stepping-stonej. But
thiore ofL us w\ho have enjo!ed the confidence
l une I, Iga;9.!~
is worst in his nature. He is sent to a'-
reformlarory, and on his return home secures
a porlinon as chauffeur in a wealthy family.
One night hie brings the daughter home
drunk and carries her to her room. It Is
there~ he accidenrall smothers her to death.
in l'ear hie raki s the body into the basement
andl burns it The cellar scene is gruesome
and awfiul. H-ii crime ii discovered. Later
he dchbcrairel\ commiri another murder to
proteci' hlnmselt'. The rran hunt on the
r~:oollopi of: Chiijgo is ito real that one Ilves 4
\*.tth Bigger through all that terrible ex-
perie-nic. At last he ii arrested. tried and
,enrenced to death. E~ryr paste of: this story
fro~m the rat scene in rihe first chapter to
thc death cell In rhe last is shocking and
horrble~l to the last degpree.
it ma~\ be thlr isuch a no\el as N.:tive Son
ii needed to iting the conscience of the
Amricnrln people. But I am af'raid that the
toral ellTect will not be to create symnpathy
and underitandarig. but~ leaves us rather In
the mood of the maln \;ho has had a bad
nlghtmare, icomethlng to eicape from as soon
as poiiiblc. Let us hop~le rlhat the readers of
'~.;?::e So: \all not judge all Negro novels
on thle basis of rhij one book.
Thle really great Negro No;.cl has still )
to be wrirttn. Ka.rwe,-Soni and N'ot WIt'houtl
L,.mgphtrr olll ha:e thoclr day. a \.ery long
day, bur the Negro Classic ii still unborn.
This race oft people, brought by force from
their home s aroij the sea, to be beaten on
the an,.Il of: the Ameriian ilate system, and
set free in a w\hire world that hated and
fesared him, has suill to produce its greatest
characters. That is not a crltjiijm. It is a
bright and shining hope.
In 193-1 Alr Hughres ublirhed a volume
of rhorr srories entirled. Th, lit'as! of if hitc
Follts. His outstandine piece of w~ork ic the
old mjimmy ofi d~y; gone bV, writh her chiil-
dren .andl granebidrel~in gro.*~.ing up In a
nFon world, 3nd the mec.irable :onfliits of
!outhr and age. Helre In thee pages ve
mcet ''Tempy: the highei~ i lass Chrictian in
th-e family. Epiecopal, andl ro holy the cani't
:Ialn he-r oiwn r!e~.ahsr A~nlle, so trui. and
lotal,11 and limT bc~I.v. hereC [o~;Iy and go~ne to.
marrow\.. nd In rlhe backgroaun d as In mo~st
Negro n.-,; cl, th-e dark1 specter at raice dii-
The cojlori-d race Itself hasi ben the frirst
to c~ome to grip un th rt: fundamental prob.
le-m;, andl that i, 6ralrly to Irts credir. The
grear noscis~l about (Ih N=-gro: are belong wrrit.
ten bp thle Negroj. The w~hlre writer has
exepan~l's hasl Ignored ll h T3is trge. The
juisuceI but here and there In thec midsit oif a
g~reat dlrkiness~ the Iighr ii beginning to sh-ine.
The e ic-nie ii .ery striking in thes case of
Rlihard1 W\right andl hii non-1, No~::;: 50on.
The Book of the Mnt~~nh CIlub pur its stamp
of approval upocn it. The literary worrld
11as proclaimed It the greatest of: all Negro
no eli. Mr. Wright himself has bcen lion-
ized. Here ii a Story that in its stark reah~m
is on a pa~r w\ith Grapesj of Ilrr;Ath The ?ook
is all dark. It leares you in a terribly de-
pre'ssed moo~d. You .ill need a strong
Stomachi and a shock proof morably in order
to pursu` ItI pgeCS.
ht ii the itory or' Blgge'r Thomas, \*.ho grrows j
up in an en\ironmeint that brings out all that
ByI GALEN hi. FISHER
enuirel falie) had of the Japanese evacuces hate known the.
Son the Coast that anguish through rhjich they hav~e been pass
oya~l and dislo!yal ing. It has Indeed been a calamity. A
he Army to be in Dostoietsky w;oulld seize upon it. Whether
olence. Or not Stcinbeckl is contemplacing a book
:rate wa'r, I should about this Japaneje ordeal, I do not knowv, but
.imply ob~serve that some one is sure to wvrite one that will sting
ll prevent further the conscience. Wounds too deep for tears-
civil liberties. If have been inflicted.
e group of citizens Some of the more philosophical citizen-
n wvith an enemy Japanes~e have said that they would accept.
nt, then wvhen our expulsion as a necessary sacrifice to national-