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Richard Wright

Richard Wright


For the first time in a deluxe boxed set, the definitive edition of Richard Wright's landmark works in the form in which he intended them to be read. Here, in authoritative texts based on the author's original typescripts and proofs, is the Library of America's acclaimed edition of Richard Wright's major works. Wright's first novel, Lawd Today!, published posthumously in 1963 and here presented for the first time in its original form, interweaves news bulletins, songs, exuberant wordplay, and scenes of confrontation and celebration into a kaleidoscopic chronicle of the events of one day in the life of a black Chicago postal worker. Uncle Tom's Children first brought Wright to national attention. The characters in these five stories struggle to survive the cruelty of racism in the South, as Wright asks "what quality of will must a Negro possess to live and die with dignity in a country that denied his humanity." Wright's masterpiece, Native Son, exploded on the American literary scene in 1940. The story of Bigger Thomas, a young black man living in the raw, noisy, crowded slums of Chicago's South Side, captured the hopes and yearnings, the pain and rage of black Americans with an unprecedented intensity and vividness. The text printed in this volume restores the changes and cuts--including the replacement of an entire scene--that Wright was forced to make by book club editors who feared offending their readers. Wright's wrenching memoir Black Boy, an eloquent account of his struggle to escape a life of poverty, ignorance and fear in his native South, was an immediate bestseller when it appeared in 1945. But Wright's complete autobiography, published for the first time in this volume as Black Boy (American Hunger), is a far more complex and probing work, chronicaling his encounter with racism in the North, his apprenticeship as a writer, and his disillusionment with the Communist Party. Wright's 1953 novel The Outsider appears here in a text that restores the many stylistic changes and long cuts made by his editors without his knowledge. When Cross Damon is mistakenly believed to have died in a subway accident, he seizes the opportunity to invent a new life for himself. The text here, based on Wright's final, corrected typescript, casts new light on his development of the style he called "poetic realism." Boxed set contains Richard Wright: Early Works, 936 pp., and Richard Wright: Later Works, 887 pp., volumes #55 and #56 in the Library of America series.



  • Condition: New
    HPB condition ratings
    • New: Item is brand new, unused and unmarked, in flawless condition.
    • Fine/Like New (F): No defects, little usage. May show remainder marks. Older books may show minor flaws.
    • Very Good (VG): Shows some signs of wear and is no longer fresh. Attractive. Used textbooks do not come with supplemental materials.
    • Good (G): Average used book with all pages present. Possible loose bindings, highlighting, cocked spine or torn dust jackets. Used textbooks do not come with supplemental materials.
    • Fair (FR): Obviously well-worn, but no text pages missing. May be without endpapers or title page. Markings do not interfere with readability. Used textbooks do not come with supplemental materials.
    • Poor (P): All text is legible but may be soiled and have binding defects. Reading copies and binding copies fall into this category. Used textbooks do not come with supplemental materials.
    Conditions Guide
  • Format: Hardcover
  • Sold by: HPB.com
  • Seller rating:
  • Language: English
  • Publisher: Library of America
  • ISBN-13: 9781598536225
  • ISBN: 1598536222
  • Publication Year: 2019
  • Edition: BOX UXG
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HPB condition ratings
  • New: Item is brand new, unused and unmarked, in flawless condition.
  • Fine/Like New (F): No defects, little usage. May show remainder marks. Older books may show minor flaws.
  • Very Good (VG): Shows some signs of wear and is no longer fresh. Attractive. Used textbooks do not come with supplemental materials.
  • Good (G): Average used book with all pages present. Possible loose bindings, highlighting, cocked spine or torn dust jackets. Used textbooks do not come with supplemental materials.
  • Fair (FR): Obviously well-worn, but no text pages missing. May be without endpapers or title page. Markings do not interfere with readability. Used textbooks do not come with supplemental materials.
  • Poor (P): All text is legible but may be soiled and have binding defects. Reading copies and binding copies fall into this category. Used textbooks do not come with supplemental materials.
Conditions Guide
HPB condition ratings
  • New: Mint condition or still sealed (SS). Absolutely perfect in every way. New.
  • Fine/Like New (EX): No defects, little sign of use, well cared for. Plays perfectly. Close to new. Not necessarily sealed or unused, but close. Could be an unopened promotional or cut item. Sometimes called: mint-minus.
  • Very Good (VG): Will show some signs that it was played and otherwise handled by a previous owner who took good care of it.
  • Good (G): Attractive and well cared for, but no longer fresh. Minor signs of wear, scuffing or scratching, but will play almost perfectly. For vinyl: barely detectable crackles or pops.
  • Fair (FR): This item is in okay condition. For vinyl: good is not so good and the record may have low level crackles or pops when playing. CD: one or more tracks may skip.
  • Poor (P): Obviously well-worn and handled. Most vinyl collectors will not buy good or below, but some tracks on CD or vinyl will play.
Conditions Guide
HPB condition ratings
  • New: This movie is unopened and brand new.
  • Fine/Like New (EX): Near new. No defects, little sign of use. Plays perfectly. Not necessarily sealed or unused, but close. No skipping; no fuzzy or snowy frames in VHS.
  • Very Good (VG): Attractive and well cared for but no longer fresh. Minor signs of wear, but will play almost perfectly. For VHS: barely detectable distortion or very few fuzzy or snowy frames.
  • Good (G): This item is in okay condition and basically works well. There may be some minor distortion on VHS tape; slight scratching or wear on DVD.
  • Fair (FR): Basically plays, but may be obviously well-worn with some scratching or tape distortion.
  • Poor (P): Disc or tape is intact, but may be scratched or stretched. There may be skips or distortion or product defects.
Conditions Guide
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