Letters from Langston (Paperback)

From the Harlem Renaissance to the Red Scare and Beyond

By Langston Hughes, Evelyn Louise Crawford (Editor), MaryLouise Patterson, M.D. (Editor), Robin D.G. Kelley (Foreword by)

University of California Press, 9780520285347, 440pp.

Publication Date: February 1, 2016

Other Editions of This Title:
Hardcover (2/1/2016)

List Price: 29.95*
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Langston Hughes, one of America's greatest writers, was an innovator of jazz poetry and a leader of the Harlem Renaissance whose poems and plays resonate widely today. Accessible, personal, and inspirational, Hughes’s poems portray the African American community in struggle in the context of a turbulent modern United States and a rising black freedom movement. This indispensable volume of letters between Hughes and four leftist confidants sheds vivid light on his life and politics.

Letters from Langston begins in 1930 and ends shortly before his death in 1967, providing a window into a unique, self-created world where Hughes lived at ease. This distinctive volume collects the stories of Hughes and his friends in an era of uncertainty and reveals their visions of an idealized world—one without hunger, war, racism, and class oppression.

About the Author

Evelyn Louise Crawford, a retired arts administrator and consultant, and MaryLouise Patterson, a pediatrician in clinical practice, are the daughters of Langston Hughes’s cherished friends Evelyn Graves Crawford, Matt N. Crawford, Louise Thompson Patterson, and William L. Patterson. Hughes was a frequent guest in the homes of the two families and was like an uncle to to Evelyn Louise and MaryLouise.

Praise For Letters from Langston: From the Harlem Renaissance to the Red Scare and Beyond

"The letters are held together by well-researched notes on black intellectuals' battles for racial and economic justice, and they paint a vivid picture of the poet's exuberant mind... Letters from Langston gives an excellet account of the racial and political challenges faced by this extraordinary writer."

— Rosemary Booth