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The Healing

The Healing

‘Corregidora is the most brutally honest and painful revelation of what has occurred, and is occurring, in the souls of Black men and women’ JAMES BALDWIN

‘No novel about any black woman could ever be the same after this’ TONI MORRISON

Upon publication in 1975, Corregidora was hailed as a masterpiece, winning acclaim from writers including James Baldwin, Maya Angelou, Toni Morrison and John Updike. Exploring themes such as race, sexuality and the long repercussions of slavery, this powerful novel paved the way for Beloved and The Colour Purple. Now, this lost classic is published for a new generation of readers.

Blues singer Ursa is consumed by her hatred of Corregidora, a nineteenth-century slave master who fathered both her mother and grandmother. Charged with ‘making generations’ to bear witness to the abuse embodied in the family name, Ursa Corregidora finds herself unable to keep alive this legacy when she is made sterile in a violent fight with her husband. Haunted by the ghosts of a Brazilian plantation, pained by a present of lovelessness and despair, Ursa slowly and firmly strikes her own terms with womanhood.

AS HEARD ON THE BACKLISTED PODCAST

Also new to the VMC list: Eva’s Man and The Healing by Gayl Jones.

‘An American writer with a powerful sense of vital inheritance, of history in the blood’ JOHN UPDIKE

‘Gayl Jones’s first novel, Corregidora (1975), was both shocking and ground-breaking in its probing of the psychological legacy of slavery and sexual ownership through the life of a Kentucky blues singer … it predated Alice Walker’s The Color Purple and Toni Morrison’s Beloved, revealing an unfinished emancipation and the power of historical memory to shape lives. It also marked a shift in African-American literature that made women, and relationships between black people, central’ MAYA JAGGI, Guardian


‘Corregidora‘s survey of trauma and overcoming has become even better and more relevant with the passage of time. It remains an indispensable point of entry into the tradition of African American writing that Gayl Jones reshaped and enriched’ PAUL GILROY
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Genre: Fiction & Related Items / Modern & Contemporary Fiction (post C 1945)

On Sale: 3rd October 2019

Price: £9.99

ISBN-13: 9780349012179

Reviews

An important American writer . . . The Healing examines precisely what its title announces: healing from silence, from physical attacks and treachery, from spiritual and cultural isolation, from the pain of old-fashioned, aching, bluesy love . . . It is also a very funny book . . . A moving affirmation of forgiveness and trust . . . The Healing should be cause for hope, sustenance and even celebration
Valerie Sayers, New York Times
Gayl Jones's work remains essential and vital; I will be rereading her catalogue for the rest of my life
Kima Jones, Nylon
One of the most distinguished African American women of letters, Jones offers her first novel to be published in twenty years. It is gripping, beautiful and well worth the wait
Ms. Magazine
Compelled by the southern speech and taut, sparring dialogue of the early fiction, [The Healing] has a witty, savvy, sometimes cynical edge . . . As Harlan trawls black culture, Jones slyly combines folksy, vernacular wisdom with discursive flights. Into this fluid pastiche she mixes pop culture - Oprah, Denzel, Tina Turner - with allusions to Chaucer, Henry James, Ralph Ellison, Ishmael Reed . . . the novel's richness lies in its entertaining meandering, and the vitality of its spoken rhythms'
Maya Jaggi, Guardian
An American writer with a powerful sense of vital inheritance, of history
John Updike