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"For Endless Generations": Myth, Dynasty, and Frank Yerby's The Foxes of Harrow

"For Endless Generations": Myth, Dynasty, and Frank Yerby's The Foxes of Harrow "For Endless Generations": Myth, Dynasty, and Frank Yerby's The Foxes of Harrow by Gene Andrew Jarrett In terms of commercial popularity, Frank Garvin Yerby was the most successful African American novelist in the second half of the twentieth century. From The Foxes of Harrow in 1946 to McKenzie's Hundred in 1986, he published thirty-three different novels: three were translated into film, one for television; twelve were bestsellers; almost all were selections of the Book of the Month Club; they have been translated into over thirty languages; and, to date, over sixty million copies of them have been sold around the world. Yet Yerby is generally absent from anthologies of American literature, and even from those of African American literature. Although he died a little over a decade ago, in 1991, still only a handful of studies of him exist, and they are more biographical than critical. Granted, Yerby's novels consistently suffered unfavorable reviews, but such harsh criticism -- which contemporary literary scholars might be more than willing to reiterate -- should not discourage us from speculating on how and why such constrictive aesthetic judgment has persisted around popular fiction and Yerby's novels in particular, leading to his marginal http://www.deepdyve.com/assets/images/DeepDyve-Logo-lg.png The Southern Literary Journal University of North Carolina Press

"For Endless Generations": Myth, Dynasty, and Frank Yerby's The Foxes of Harrow

The Southern Literary Journal , Volume 39 (1) – Feb 8, 2006

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Publisher
University of North Carolina Press
Copyright
Copyright © 2006 by the Southern Literary Journal and the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill Department of English.
ISSN
1534-1461
Publisher site
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Abstract

"For Endless Generations": Myth, Dynasty, and Frank Yerby's The Foxes of Harrow by Gene Andrew Jarrett In terms of commercial popularity, Frank Garvin Yerby was the most successful African American novelist in the second half of the twentieth century. From The Foxes of Harrow in 1946 to McKenzie's Hundred in 1986, he published thirty-three different novels: three were translated into film, one for television; twelve were bestsellers; almost all were selections of the Book of the Month Club; they have been translated into over thirty languages; and, to date, over sixty million copies of them have been sold around the world. Yet Yerby is generally absent from anthologies of American literature, and even from those of African American literature. Although he died a little over a decade ago, in 1991, still only a handful of studies of him exist, and they are more biographical than critical. Granted, Yerby's novels consistently suffered unfavorable reviews, but such harsh criticism -- which contemporary literary scholars might be more than willing to reiterate -- should not discourage us from speculating on how and why such constrictive aesthetic judgment has persisted around popular fiction and Yerby's novels in particular, leading to his marginal

Journal

The Southern Literary JournalUniversity of North Carolina Press

Published: Feb 8, 2006

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