“Fred Moten’s newest collection is a roll call, a syllabus, a discography, church. These poems are a family reunion, where relatives from different branches literally make conversation, the hard way, by creating the common language as they go. Listening in is a pleasurable challenge; to paraphrase Coltrane, what I didn’t understand, I felt emotionally. I fell in love with the table of contents and was still giddy at the final words. ‘It’s a little [less] alone.’”—Evie Shockley, Rutgers University — N/A
“If the blues is really the poetic spirit of a people, that place deep in the unconscious where emotion, dream, and intellect commingle in flammable combinations, then Fred Moten is one of the greatest bluesmen of our generation. Thank you, B. Jenkins, for the fire.”—Robin D. G. Kelley, author of Thelonious Monk: The Life and Times of an American Original — N/A
If you are requesting permission to photocopy material for classroom use, please contact the Copyright Clearance Center at copyright.com;
If the Copyright Clearance Center cannot grant permission, you may request permission from our Copyrights & Permissions Manager (use Contact Information listed below).
If you are requesting permission to reprint DUP material (journal or book selection) in another book or in any other format, contact our Copyrights & Permissions Manager (use Contact Information listed below).
Many images/art used in material copyrighted by Duke University Press are controlled, not by the Press, but by the owner of the image. Please check the credit line adjacent to the illustration, as well as the front and back matter of the book for a list of credits. You must obtain permission directly from the owner of the image. Occasionally, Duke University Press controls the rights to maps or other drawings. Please direct permission requests for these images to email@example.com.
For book covers to accompany reviews, please contact the publicity department.
If you're interested in a Duke University Press book for subsidiary rights/translations, please contact firstname.lastname@example.org. Include the book title/author, rights sought, and estimated print run.
Instructions for requesting an electronic text on behalf of a student with disabilities are available here.
The first and last poems in the collection are explicitly devoted to Moten’s mother; the others relate more obliquely to her life and legacy. They invoke performers, writers, artists, and thinkers including not only James Baldwin, Roland Barthes, Frederick Douglass, Billie Holiday, Audre Lorde, Charlie Parker, and Cecil Taylor, but also contemporary scholars of race, affect, and queer theory. The book concludes with an interview conducted by Charles Henry Rowell, the editor of the journal Callaloo. Rowell elicits Moten’s thoughts on the relation of his poetry to theory, music, and African American vernacular culture.
Fred Moten is Associate Professor of English at Duke University. He is the author of In the Break: The Aesthetics of the Black Radical Tradition and the poetry collections Hughson’s Tavern, Arkansas, and I ran from it and was still in it.
Sign up for Subject Matters email updates to receive discounts, new book announcements, and more.