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Trey Ellis; Bertram D. Ashe, fwd.

Northeastern Library of Black Literature

2003 • 224 pp. 8 illus. 5 1/2 x 8 1/4"
African-American Fiction / African-American Studies / Literary Criticism - American

$19.95 Paperback, 978-1-55553-586-5

A playful, irreverent look at the African-American literary community.

Trey Ellis's uproariously funny debut novel Platitudes, first published in 1988, takes on conflicts within the African American literary community. Dewayne Wellington, a failing black experimental novelist, and Isshee Ayam, a radical feminist author, collaborate on Dewayne's latest sexist comedy. Alternately telling the story about the coming of age of Earle and Dorothy-two black middle-class teenagers, sex-starved in New York City-the battling writers sneak ever, and dangerously, closer to reconciling their literary disputes.

This edition of Platitudes also includes "The New Black Aesthetic," a groundbreaking essay by Ellis that appeared in the journal Callaloo.

Reviews / Endorsements

"A stunning first novel. Blending the genres of the epistolary and satire, Ellis has produced a novel at once socially engaged and artistically fresh, hilariously funny and intellectually compelling. His is a major talent and this is a wonderful read." —Henry Louis Gates, Jr.

"This novel takes off like love at first sight. In its wonderfully comic atmosphere, it is smart and sassy, sensitive and intelligent. The author understands and cherishes his literary ancestors, and manages, at the same time, to be absolutely himself-in his own voice and of his generation."—Clarence Major

Trey Ellis is a professional novelist and screenwriter. In addition to Platitudes, he has written the highly acclaimed novels Home Repairs and Right Here, Right Now, as well as several screenplays, including The Inkwell and The Tuskegee Airmen. He lives in Santa Monica, California. Bertram D. Ashe is Associate Professor of English at the College of Holy Cross. He lives in Worcester, Massachusetts. Richard Yarborough, editor of the Northeastern Library of Black Literature, is Associate Professor of English at the University of California, Los Angeles.

Fri, 9 Nov 2018 09:28:38 -0500