C.L.R. James was a man of prodigious and varied accomplishments. He was a protean twentieth-century Marxist intellectual, widely recognized as a pioneering scholar of slave revolt; a leading voice of Pan-Africanism; a peripatetic revolutionary and scholar active in US and UK radical movements; a novelist, playwright, and critic; and one of the premier writers on cricket and sports. This intellectual portrait was written by James’s longtime interlocutor and comrade Paul Buhle, and initially published in 1988. With a new final chapter, updated bibliography, a new foreword by historian Robin D.G. Kelley and a new afterword by Paul Buhle and the philosopher Lawrence Ware, this long-awaited revised edition of a classic biography will be a key resource in the James revival.
“Buhle’s path-breaking work—attentive and scrupulous—is a major contribution … A first-rate analysis of James’s central achievements.”
“For Buhle, James was many things: artist, revolutionary, athlete, nationalist, internationalist, Anglophile, Graecophile, libertarian, Leninist, Black liberationist, Pan-Africanist, classicist and lover of popular culture. The central achievement of Buhle’s biography of James is that he shows that James did not connect his various roles with the word ‘nevertheless.’ Rather he saw himself as an artist and therefore a revolutionary; as a nationalist and therefore a Pan-Africanist.”
“I thought it a good book, and a hard book to write, a biography. I haven’t killed anybody, but he made it interesting … A successful piece of work.”