Read More (1.4 MB)
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.
Northeastern University Press
African American literature, African American fiction, satire, African-American cultural theory
School of Arts and Sciences
Ashe, Bertram D. "Foreword." Foreword to Platitudes: & the New Black Aesthetic, by Trey Ellis, vii-xxvi. Boston: Northeastern University Press, 2003.