A Little Devil in America

Curator Reviews

A Little Devil in America

In case it wasn't obvious by now, Abdurraqib is one of our greatest chroniclers of America. Here he creates a new history of Black performance, from minstrelsy to Lando Calrissian to Def Comedy Jam, with a deftness and vulnerability that draws from all his reservoirs as a poet, essayist, and cultural critic. What makes this all work so well for us is that Abdurraqib writes from a humble place, both in the form of his longtime devotion to his native Ohio, and also because it is almost as if he never left his childhood bedroom, examining the things he has always liked, never ceasing to ask himself why, why, and why.

Brendan Slocumb

I thought I knew a lot about the cultural and historical facts of some of my favorite performers, but this book took me on a ride that extinguished everything I thought I knew about Black culture in America. Such a gripping narrative.

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