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The Sport of the Gods (1902)

by Paul Laurence Dunbar

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1492184,272 (3.59)None
Paul Laurence Dunbar (1872‚??1906) overcame racism and poverty to become one of the best-known authors in America, and the first African American to earn a living from his poetry, fiction, drama, journalism, and lectures. This original collection includes the short novel The Sport of the Gods, Dunbar‚??s essential essays and short stories, and his finest poems, such as ‚??Sympathy,‚?Ě all which explore crucial social, political, and humanistic issues at the dawn of the twenti… (more)
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I need to say that I read the latter portion of this book from the Paul Lawrence Dunbar Reader. I really enjoyed this story even though it was quite melancholy. The story of a falsely accused butler, Berry Hamilton, stealing money from his Southern employer, Maurice Oakley. Of course Hamilton was sent to jail without much of a thought and his family had to leave town.

The family which consisted of Fannie(wife), Kit(daughter), and Joe(son) all made their way north to New York. When they arrived they were immediately confronted with the smooth talkers and wonders of the city. Fannie tried to keep somewhat of a grip on her children but it soon wilted. The "city" had much more appeal than Fannie's moral cautions. Fannie lost her grip on Joe first. The Banner Club and it's patrons feed his strong desire to fit in with the City. Kit's appetite for the stage blinded her relationship with her mother. They all soon forgot about Berry being in prison. Skagg's a Banner patron that had befriended Joe sought out to find a story and found the truth.

The story is about how unfortunate circumstances and how the refuge of a new city ate away at a family like a parasite. The book ended in tragedy and redemption. Dunbar is so gentle with his characters. His gentleness makes the tragedy go down a little easier. ( )
  pinkcrayon99 | Jul 15, 2010 |
1902. Great book. Very plot-driven and gut-wrenching. A black family with a simple life in the South is shattered when the father is framed for a crime. Not even really framed, just blamed and convicted on absolutely no evidence. His family finds themselves unable to get work and move to New York City where they fare no better. The odds were stacked against them at every turn. A well-written book about the ugly truths of racism at the turn of the century. ( )
  kylekatz | Sep 3, 2008 |
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Author nameRoleType of authorWork?Status
Paul Laurence Dunbarprimary authorall editionscalculated
Williams, Kenny J.Introductionsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
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Paul Laurence Dunbar (1872‚??1906) overcame racism and poverty to become one of the best-known authors in America, and the first African American to earn a living from his poetry, fiction, drama, journalism, and lectures. This original collection includes the short novel The Sport of the Gods, Dunbar‚??s essential essays and short stories, and his finest poems, such as ‚??Sympathy,‚?Ě all which explore crucial social, political, and humanistic issues at the dawn of the twenti

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