McKay, Claude
New York, Harper and Row, 1965 from 1928 original.

Marvelous novel of the street life of Harlem in 1920. Jake Brown, rough, good-looking, hard working drifter is he central character. He is supported by Ray (Raymound) a Haiti mulatto. Ray was going to school at Howard University, but had to quit when his father lost his job with the Haitian government for protesting the U.S. occupation. Ray is a very intelligent well-read fellow (nicknamed the professor) who spouts Haitian and world history and has hopes for himself and his race. Ray finally can't stand the roughness of Harlem, or the world in general, and flees Harlem to the sea, hoping to work his way to Europe. Ray is one of the most positive images of a Haitian I have ever seen in fiction.

McKay was born in Jamaica


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