While taking this class, there is another novel that I have often compared many of the works in our class to. It is a novel that, if you are interested in furthering pursuing this topic, I feel would be beneficial to further study.
In high school, our class read Barbara Kingsolver’s 1998 novel The Poisonwood Bible. Although it is written by a white author and set in Africa rather than America, it is an interesting story that could be used to compare with other African American literary works.
The basic story behind the novel revolves around the Price family on a mission trip to the Belgian Congo. The father, Nathan Price, is in charge of preaching the word of God to the natives in the village while also helping them out with needs such as food and clothing. Nathan also brings his entire family which includes his wife Orleanna, his oldest daughter Rachel, twin daughters Leah and Adah, and youngest daughter Ruth May. The novel is broken into various narrations, by chapter, and switches back and forth between the five lead female characters. The situation in the novel is the reverse of much of what we have read in this class. Instead of the whites being the dominant group in society, the Price family is in the minority and often black at the mercy of the Africans of the Congo. I think it would be interesting to compare say, the scene from The Invisible Man where he was boxing and at the mercy of the whites to the situation of the Prices who are, many times, a show for the people of the Congo and are often at the mercy of those people.
I would love to hear from my fellow classmates to see if anyone else has further suggestions for reading around the types of subjects we studied in class.