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Shaping MemoriesReflections of African American Women Writers$
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Joanne Veal Gabbin

Print publication date: 2009

Print ISBN-13: 9781604732740

Published to University Press of Mississippi: March 2014

DOI: 10.14325/mississippi/9781604732740.001.0001

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A Remembrance

A Remembrance

(p.212) A Remembrance
Shaping Memories

Sonia Sanchez

University Press of Mississippi

This chapter focuses on the death of James Baldwin, which made a big impact on Sonia Sanchez’s life. When Sanchez first read James Baldwin’s Go Tell It on the Mountain, she knew she was home. Seeing Baldwin on TV, she immediately felt a kinship with this man whose anger and disappointment with America’s contradictions transformed his face into a warrior’s face, whose tongue transformed massacres into triumphs. When Sanchez first met him in the late 1960s, she was stricken by his smile smiling out at the New York City audience he had just attacked. Sanchez, however, focuses on the next to the last time they spoke in Atlanta, when Atlanta was just coming out from under serial murders. At the time, Atlanta looked on Baldwin as an outsider attempting to stir up things better left unsaid.

Keywords:   outsider, serial murders, James Baldwin, Sonia Sanchez, America’s contradictions, Atlanta

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