"A CLASSIC OF AMERICAN LITERATURE": FIRST EDITION OF MANCHILD IN THE PROMISED LAND, 1965, INSCRIBED BY CLAUDE BROWN
BROWN, Claude. Manchild in the Promised Land. New York: Macmillan, (1965). Octavo, original red cloth, original dust jacket. $2400.
First edition of Claude Brown's moving 1965 account of his journey out of poverty and crime in Harlem, inscribed by him, "To B— L— from Claude Brown," in scarce original dust jacket.
Brown's controversial "Manchild in the Promised Land chronicled his ascent from a harrowing childhood of violent crime and poverty in Harlem and became a classic of American literature… It is written with brutal and unvarnished honesty… in language that is fierce, uproarious, obscene and tender, but always sensible and direct… though not published as a memoir, it closely paralleled Brown's life in virtually every detail" (New York Times). ''Claude Brown makes James Baldwin and all that old Rock of Ages rhetoric sound like some kind of Moral Rearmament tourist from Toronto come to visit the poor" (Tom Wolfe). "Manchild, published at the height of the civil rights movement, instantly put Brown in a class with Ralph Ellison, James Baldwin and Richard Wright as the premier interpreters of Black urban life" (Washington Post). First edition, first printing: with no statement of edition or printings on the copyright page, red topstain; dust jacket with $5.95 on front flap. Blockson 3327.
Interior very fresh with trace of soiling to cloth; light edge-wear, minimal soiling to verso of very elusive dust jacket. An attractive copy.