Picture of author.

Charles Johnson (1) (1948–)

Author of Middle Passage

For other authors named Charles Johnson, see the disambiguation page.

Charles Johnson (1) has been aliased into Charles Richard Johnson.

29+ Works 2,965 Members 40 Reviews 3 Favorited

About the Author

Image credit: Lynette Huffman-Johnson

Works by Charles Johnson

Works have been aliased into Charles Richard Johnson.

Middle Passage (1990) 1,383 copies
Dreamer (1998) 205 copies
Oxherding Tale (1982) 201 copies
Mine Eyes Have Seen (2007) 99 copies
Faith And The Good Thing (1974) 91 copies
Proverbs (Pocket Canon) (1998) 52 copies
Night Hawks: Stories (2018) 37 copies

Associated Works

Works have been aliased into Charles Richard Johnson.

Invisible Man (1952) — Preface, some editions — 16,201 copies
The Story and Its Writer: An Introduction to Short Fiction (1983) — Contributor — 1,127 copies
Juneteenth (1999) — Preface, some editions — 839 copies
American Gothic Tales (1996) — Contributor — 454 copies
Sudden Fiction: American Short-Short Stories (1984) — Contributor — 362 copies
The Best American Short Stories of the 80s (1990) — Contributor — 158 copies
Brotherman: The Odyssey of Black Men in America (1995) — Contributor — 91 copies
Novel Voices (2003) — Contributor — 55 copies
The Penguin Book of the Modern American Short Story (2021) — Contributor — 51 copies
The Good Parts: The Best Erotic Writing in Modern Fiction (2000) — Contributor — 34 copies
The Best American Short Stories 1982 (1982) — Contributor — 29 copies
The Penguin Book of Sea Stories (1977) — Contributor — 15 copies
The Burning Maiden (2012) — Contributor — 5 copies
Humor Me: An Anthology of Humor by Writers of Color (2002) — Contributor — 4 copies

Tagged

Common Knowledge

Legal name
Johnson, Charles Richard
Birthdate
1948-04-23
Gender
male
Nationality
USA
Birthplace
Evanston, Illinois, USA

Members

Reviews

This is a nice, humorous complement to the graphic novels I've read recently about the Black Panther Party and Angela Davis. Johnson's cartoons from the 1960s and '70s are able to find the funny in Black militants, the KKK, and race relations in general. And sometimes that means involving aliens and Noah's Ark.

It's great to see material too long neglected back in print.

FOR REFERENCE:

Contents: From High School to Black Humor (1965 - 70) -- Half-Past Nation Time (1972) -- Lumps in the Melting Pot (1973) -- Freelance (1968 - 1975) -- Later Work (1975 - Present) -- Acknowledgments -- Also by Charles Johnson… (more)
 
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villemezbrown | May 16, 2023 |
As for the personal side of the novel, I like Rutherford I guess, although he’s unfortunately rather realistic in terms of average people and what happens to the downtrodden—not acting ‘the right way’ did Not begin in 1968–although he does have a nice hero’s journey and comes out okay. Actually at first the book didn’t quite take to me that well, in terms of ‘interest’, but now that I’m at the end I have to say that it’s quite pretty.

As for the social side and the big takeaway, I have to say that for me it’s that the pre-slavery Africans were Not benighted savages without culture or whatever. This book helped me to understand what I read in the “African American Heritage Hymnal”: “In much of American and Western history individuals for generations have been led to believe that the African humanity housed in the bowels of slave ships was a mass of ignorance, illiteracy, superstition, and madness. It was the work of a slave culture to transport all intrinsic and extrinsic wickedness of the slave trade, the slave masters, and the slave mistresses throughout the western world through contrived myths that would seek to partially exonerate the oppressors and miseducate the victims. This was partly successful. However, there are two quotes, often used by Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr., from William Cullen Bryant and Thomas Carlyle—“Truth, crushed to earth, shall rise again” and “No lie can live forever”—that demonstrate how the myths of the slave masters were exposed and vetoed. There is a European proverb that says: “Lies have short legs.” Eventually, truth will overtake falsehood. It might take an hour or two, or even a century or two. Therefore, there was in slave culture an inherent contradiction that would eventually contribute to its downfall. But the walls of tyranny do not fall gently.”

Or, more simply, the Allmuseri are pretty fracking cool, and they were cool a long time before they got kidnapped and smuggled into slave ships.

And it’s appropriate, you know, to see that, because Christ did not come to help us exploit people or lie to them, and I think in the future, in the good days of God, eventually people will have to see that the people of God do have links to the “primitive peoples” of the world, and that although all cultures are in a state of becoming and are not perfect, these cultures can be redeemed and have the kindness brought out of them, because they already have value, and not only the “classical” cultures that even and sometimes even especially were for European crusaders the One Thing, you know…. We will have to see that, if we do not want people to take the other horn of the dilemma and say, Christianity is not all “modern” and “rational” and, though we will not say so, “European”, and so it must be condemned so that people can become, not, in the main, indeed, *scientific* atheists who smugly explain that the abstract belief “God” is not “true” regardless of what it leads to, but, generally some sort of variation of the theme of buy-nice-things-materialists who are friendly and like their friends when they feel good, and believe in the God of holiday indulgences and other corporate guidelines as long as things work out for them.

But I did like the reference to the Odyssey, you know. —But at night, Black Penelope unweaves the Garment of Destiny….

…. …. Another theme in this book is the (antebellum) Black elite and Black slave-holders, something I’m also encountering in “A Black Women’s History of the United States”. Now, I am I guess a moderate, because I think that everyone has the ability to be heard, regardless of whether or not you’re a radical or a moderate, (although I guess if you were too deep into the politics of whiteness, this alone would make me a triple un-good radical), but obviously this has something to do with me being white. I feel some affinity with snobbish white people, as well as with the most unfortunate, and the former affinity would probably be less if I were Black. (Which doesn’t prove that I would then be better or truer, but you never know.) But anyway, certainly with the antebellum Black elite/Black slave-holders, you get the dangers of an amoral (or immoral) moderation. The Black slave-holders were following the logic of gradualism, the logic of the system, the logic of individualism! Surely, if both master and slave are Black—if a single Black person can make it in the slave-holding system, why, what then? (mad British cartoon scientist) What then, my boys?

Surely, they must be on to something, Professor! 😸🤪

But, you know—then there’s morality, right.
… (more)
 
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goosecap | 15 other reviews | Nov 24, 2022 |
A story of a ship that leaves New Orleans for the west coast of Africa to pick up a load of kidnapped Allmuseiri who've been stolen to sell for slaves. It's told from the viewpoint of a man who stows away on the ship to escape marriage. A death-dealing storm on the way back home changes the plans or the rich men who commissioned the voyage. Vivid imagery.
I'm left with questions about what happened to the god on board?
 
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burritapal | 15 other reviews | Oct 23, 2022 |
This is a nice collection of stories, each interesting and engaging, all told in an easy and straightforward style. Overall, the book is a quick and easy read, nice for summer reading.
 
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PaulLoesch | 1 other review | Apr 2, 2022 |

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