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Playing in the White – Black Writers, White Subjects - Oxford Scholarship Online
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Playing in the White: Black Writers, White Subjects

Stephanie Li


The postwar period witnessed an outpouring of white life novels, that is texts by African American writers focused almost exclusively on white characters. Almost every major mid-twentieth-century black writer published one of these anomalous texts. Controversial since their publication in the 1940s and 1950s, these novels have since fallen into obscurity, given the challenges they pose to traditional conceptions of the African American literary canon. Playing in the White aims to bring these neglected novels back into conversations about the nature of African American literature and the unique ... More

Keywords: white life novels, African American literature, whiteness, racial representation, postwar period

Bibliographic Information

Print publication date: 2015 Print ISBN-13: 9780199398881
Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: December 2014 DOI:10.1093/acprof:oso/9780199398881.001.0001


Affiliations are at time of print publication.

Stephanie Li, author
University of Rochester