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The Wedding

A Novel

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eBook published by Anchor (Knopf Doubleday Publishing Group)

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About This Book

   In her first novel in forty-seven years, Dorothy West, the last surviving member of the Harlem Renaissance, offers an intimate glimpse into African American middle class.  Set on bucolic Martha's Vineyard in the 1950s, The Wedding tells the story of life in the Oval, a proud, insular community made up of the best and brightest of the East Coast's black bourgeoisie.  Within this inner circle of "blue-vein society," we witness the prominent Coles family gather for the wedding of the loveliest daughter, Shelby, who could have chosen from "a whole area of eligible men of the right colors and the right professions." Instead, she has fallen in love with and is about to be married to Meade Wyler, a white jazz musician from New York. A shock wave breaks over the Oval as its longtime members grapple with the changing face of its community.
   With elegant, luminous prose, Dorothy West crowns her literary career by illustrating one family's struggle to break the shackles of race and class.

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   In her first novel in forty-seven years, Dorothy West, the last surviving member of the Harlem Renaissance, offers an intimate glimpse into African American middle class.  Set on bucolic Martha's Vineyard in the 1950s, The Wedding tells the story of life in the Oval, a proud, insular community made up of the best and brightest of the East Coast's black bourgeoisie.  Within this inner circle of "blue-vein society," we witness the prominent Coles family gather for the wedding of the loveliest daughter, Shelby, who could have chosen from "a whole area of eligible men of the right colors and the right professions." Instead, she has fallen in love with and is about to be married to Meade Wyler, a white jazz musician from New York. A shock wave breaks over the Oval as its longtime members grapple with the changing face of its community.
   With elegant, luminous prose, Dorothy West crowns her literary career by illustrating one family's struggle to break the shackles of race and class.

Product Details
eBook (256 pages)
Published: December 30, 2009
Publisher: Knopf Doubleday Publishing Group
Imprint: Anchor
ISBN: 9780307575708
Other books byDorothy West
  • The Richer, the Poorer

    The Richer, the Poorer
    Stories, Sketches and Reminiscences

    Race, Gender, and Comparative Black Modernism

    Race, Gender, and Comparative Black Modernism
    Suzanne Lacascade, Marita Bonner, Suzanne...

    The Living is Easy

    The Living is Easy
    One of only a handful of novels published by black women during the forties, the story of ambitious Cleo Judson is a long-time cult classic. The Living Is Easy is delightfully wry and ironic humor—even bitchiness—of the novel coexists with a challenging moral and social complexity. "A powerful work."—Essence "Dorothy West is a brisk storyteller with an eye for ironic detail...a deft stylist and writer of social satire."—Ms. "Long beloved for its wry and ironic humor, this novel continues to delight and challenge readers."—Feminist Bookstore News * Alternate of the Book-of-the-Month and Quality Paperback Book Clubs * Suggested for course use in: African-American studies 20th-century U.S. literature

    The Last Leaf of Harlem

    The Last Leaf of Harlem
    Selected and Newly Discovered Fiction by the...
    A literary event—selected and previously uncollected fiction by the woman who was the last surviving member of the Harlem Renaissance. When Dorothy West died in 1998, she was the last surviving member of the Harlem Renaissance, a contemporary of Zora Neale Hurston, Langston Hughes, and Richard Wright. Popular history holds that between the publication of her two novels (The Living is Easy in 1948 and The Wedding in 1995), Dorothy West fell silent. In fact, there was never a time in Dorothy West’s life in which she was not writing and publishing. The Last Leaf of Harlem gathers West’s writing from these supposedly silent years--syndicated fiction in the New York Daily News, pieces for the Work Progress Administration’s Federal Writer’s Project, and publications in small journals and magazines--along with known and beloved pieces by this extraordinary writer. Many of these stories, describing and exploring marriage, loss, family life, and poverty were lost until now. The Last Leaf of Harlem brings together the almost-forgotten pieces of Dorothy West’s lifework, and gives the reader a fresh look into a remarkable writer and career.   DOROTHY WEST was born in Boston circa 1908. At her death in 1998, she was the last surviving member of the Harlem Renaissance. Her works include: The Living is Easy, The Wedding, and The Richer, The Poorer. LIONEL C. BASCOM is a professor of English at Western Connecticut State University. A long-time investigative journalist, Bascom has specialized lately in the discovery of forgotten or neglected literary manuscripts by early 20th Century African-Americans, black folklore and stories about black culture in the United States. He is the editor of A Renaissance in Harlem and lives in Danbury, Connecticut.

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  • On a morning in later August, the morning before the wedding, the sun rising out of the quiet sea stirred the Oval from its shapeless sleep and gave dimension and design to the ring of...

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