Imatge de l'autor

Nella Larsen (1891–1964)

Autor/a de Passing

11+ obres 4,660 Membres 131 Ressenyes 10 preferits

Sobre l'autor

Nella Larsen was associated with the Harlem Renaissance. She also worked as a librarian and a nurse in New York City, pursuing nursing after her brief, successful writing career until her death in 1964. Larsen's mother was Danish, and her father was West Indian; she used her experience as the child mostra'n més of middle-class parents in a mixed marriage to create characters in two novels who are stranded, caught between two cultures and unable to feel wholly at home in either. In each of Larsen's novels, the heroine suffers suffocating constrictions of her identity in both African American and white European culture. These crises in both Quicksand (1928) and Passing (1929) are further complicated by the heroine's quest for sexual as well as social identity, and both novels end without hopeful resolution. Both contain autobiographical elements, but Quicksand, the more successful, reproduced in fictional form many of the circumstances of Larsen's own early life. Although her work had been out of print for many years, she has recently been rediscovered. (Bowker Author Biography) mostra'n menys

Inclou aquests noms: Nella Larsen, Nella Larson

Obres de Nella Larsen

Obres associades

Great Short Stories by American Women (1996) — Col·laborador — 401 exemplars
The Portable Harlem Renaissance Reader (1994) — Col·laborador — 393 exemplars
The Penguin Book of Women's Humour (1996) — Col·laborador — 114 exemplars
Harlem Renaissance: Five Novels of the 1920s (2011) — Col·laborador — 106 exemplars
Invented Lives: Narratives of Black Women 1860-1960 (1987) — Col·laborador — 100 exemplars
Calling the Wind: Twentieth Century African-American Short Stories (1992) — Col·laborador — 95 exemplars
The Gender of Modernism: A Critical Anthology (1990) — Col·laborador — 62 exemplars
Harlem Renaissance Novels: The Library of America Collection (2011) — Col·laborador — 47 exemplars
Harlem's Glory: Black Women Writing, 1900-1950 (1996) — Col·laborador — 42 exemplars
The Sleeper Wakes: Harlem Renaissance Stories by Women (1993) — Col·laborador — 42 exemplars
Classic Fiction of the Harlem Renaissance (1994) — Col·laborador — 38 exemplars
Escape: Stories of Getting Away (2002) — Col·laborador — 26 exemplars
Ebony Rising: Short Fiction of the Greater Harlem Renaissance Era (2004) — Col·laborador — 16 exemplars
Women of the Harlem Renaissance (2022) — Col·laborador — 7 exemplars


Coneixement comú

Nom oficial
Imes, Nella (married)
Data de naixement
Data de defunció
Lloc de naixement
Chicago, Illinois, USA
Lloc de defunció
New York, New York, USA
Llocs de residència
Chicago, Illinois, USA (birth)
New York, New York, USA (death)
Fisk University
short story writer
Premis i honors
Guggenheim Fellowship (1930)
Biografia breu
Nella Larsen was born in Chicago to a black father and a white Danish emigrant mother. Her father died when she was young and her mother remarried and had another daughter. Most of the rest of her early life is unknown. She trained as a nurse and as a librarian, and married Elmer Imes, a physicist then living in New York City. She became a celebrated novelist and writer of the Harlem Renaissance, beginning with her 1928 novel, Quicksand. It was followed by Passing (1929). The couple were members of a circle of professionals, intellectuals, and artists that included Langston Hughes and W.E.B. Du Bois. Nella Larsen won a Guggenheim Fellowship in 1930, intending to write more novels, but never did. By 1938, she and her husband were divorced and she was no longer in touch with her friends or her publishers. She took nursing jobs beginning in 1944 and lived a solitary life for the next 20 years until her death.



6. Passing by Nella Larsen a Backlisted Book Club (març 2022)
Group Read, August 2020: Passing a 1001 Books to read before you die (agost 2020)


The characters here were multi-layered and complex, as was the subject matter. This book contains elements of literary fiction, thriller, and romance. It was a fascinating meditation on race, belonging, jealousy, and female friendship.
mj_papaya | Hi ha 93 ressenyes més | Nov 21, 2023 |
Preparing for the Netflix book club.

The character perspectives were deep even with a short time with them. Insightful, intriguing, and a story to sit with.
untitled841 | Hi ha 93 ressenyes més | Jul 3, 2023 |
A classic I am very happy to have read. However, I probably won't read it again. Its clearly written in the 20s, which usually takes me a bit longer to get through. Additionally, I'm still not 100% sure of the plot line. Overall, I think it is an extremely well written story and it is a classic in it's own right.
clougreen | Hi ha 93 ressenyes més | Jun 23, 2023 |
Passing by Nella Larson is a 1929 publication.

This short novel really packs a punch and could put any current day psychological author to the test. Set in the Harlem Renaissance, the story is centered around two childhood friends, Irene Redfield and Clare Kendy. Both are light-skinned black women- but Irene lives in Harlem with her husband and two children, while Clare passes for white, enjoying the benefits of a society wife. Irene is proud of her heritage, while Clare felt ‘passing’ would provide with her a more comfortable life.

When the two women meet again after many years of separation, the consequences of their decisions will alter their lives in ways they never could have imagined.

This novel explores the themes of race and identity- subjects that are still quite relevant today. I thought this was a taut, tightly wound story in many ways. There is always an uneasy feeling humming just beneath the surface. The repercussions of living a lie, the constant fear of exposure, and the burden it places on others who are forced to keep secrets, on top of the building tensions in Irene’s marriage once Clare forcefully inserts herself into Irene’s life again, made for some disquieting and complex situations that had me holding my breath as the suspense builds to its shocking climax.

With any short story the issue of character development can be a problem for me, but in this situation the dialogue and Irene’s inner thoughts are all that is required to create plenty of complexity.

The conclusion, though deliberately ambiguous, was stunning nonetheless, and left me feeling a little numb for a while.

The novel is very well-written, thought-provoking, suspenseful and tragic. I highly recommend this incredible, timeless classic!

4.5 stars
… (més)
1 vota
gpangel | Hi ha 93 ressenyes més | Apr 16, 2023 |



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