Web Letters | The Nation

Watered Whiskey: James Baldwin's Uncollected Writings

A complicated man, and remarkable writer

This is by far the most in-depth piece on this book and for that matter the life of James Baldwin. I had ambivalent feelings about this celebrated author over the years and I may not have agreed with his social commentary during the early years; he was still a writer extraordinaire. I thank him.

One of his earlier statements that he “despised” blacks, “possibly because they failed to produce Rembrandt,” really got me thinking
how ignorant that statement was. It was a shame that he hadn't read or heard about George Acorn, Benjamin Banneker, Otis Boykin, Dr. Charles Drew, Julia Collins, W.E.B. Du Bois, Edward Bannister Annie Louise Avery et al.

He, like many of the black intelligentsia, went through the self/group-loathing stage. I'm glad that he began to truly appreciate who he was as well as his people before his death.

Miss you, Mr. Baldwin...

Carolyn Moon

Nashville, TN

Apr 21 2011 - 11:36pm