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Charles Chesnutt

CHARLES WADDELL CHESNUTT (1858–1932) was born in Cleveland, Ohio. He drew on his experiences as a biracial American to address racial passing in his classic novel The House Behind the Cedars. Earning a living as a court stenographer and lawyer, Chesnutt supported a writing career that included the publication of numerous short stories and the completion of several other novels, some of which were considered too incendiary to be printed during his time. An active integrationist and civil rights leader, he was awarded a medal by the NAACP for distinguished literary contributions.

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The House Behind the Cedars
Written by Charles Chesnutt, Introduction by Judith Jackson Fossett
Modern Library | Trade Paperback | December 2003
$12.95/19.95(Canada) | 978-0-8129-6616-9 (0-8129-6616-3)

The House Behind the Cedars, which many consider Charles Chesnutt’s finest novel, tells of John and Lena Walden, mulatto siblings who pass for white in the postbellum American South. The drama that unfolds as they travel between black and white worlds constitutes a riveting portrait of the shifting and intractable nature... Read more






Three Classic African-American Novels
Written by William W. Brown, Frances Ellen Watkins Harper and Charles Chesnutt, Edited by Henry Louis Gates, Jr., Introduction by Henry Louis Gates, Jr.
Vintage | Trade Paperback | August 1990
$21.00/25.95(Canada) | 978-0-679-72742-2 (0-679-72742-6)

William Wells Brown, Frances E.W. Harper, and Charles W. Chesnutt, three black writers who bore witness to the experience of their people under slavery, create a portrait of black life in the 19th century in these three novels. Read more





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