by Joyce Ann Joyce
In Warriors, Conjurers and Priests: Defining African-centered Literary Criticism, Joyce Ann Joyce brilliantly merges her vision of African American literary criticism with her understanding of the politics of higher education. Collected together, these essays depict the literary critic as a shaman and literary conjurer, steeped in the spirituality and history of Black culture. Her analysis offers perceptive readings of major Black literary figures of the 20th century - including Gwendolyn Brooks, Sonia Sanchez, James Baldwin, Ann Petry, Terry McMillan, Ishmael Reed and others. Professor Joyce demonstrates extensive research, while illustrating the interconnectedness of fiction and poetry to historical, political and cultural reality. At the same time, she provides balanced critiques rather than one-sidedness posing as universality. Most importantly, hers is a voice that recognizes the heterogeneity of the Black community and, in hopes of heightening understanding, does not fear discussing the strengths and weaknesses of diverse views.
Paperback: 311 pages