Quicksand, Nella Larsen
Nella Larsen


Helga's mother is white, and her father is black--and absent. Ostracized throughout her lonely childhood for her dark skin, Helga spends her adult life seeking acceptance. Everywhere she goes — the American South, Harlem, even Denmark--she feels oppressed. Socially, economically, and psychologically, Helga struggles against the "quicksand" of classism, racism, and sexism.One of the most acclaimed and influential writers of the Harlem Renaissance, Nella Larsen published her powerful first novel in 1928. Quicksand features intriguing autobiographical parallels with Larsen's own life, in addition to reflecting many aspects of African-American culture of the 1920s. Alice Walker praised it and Passing (Larsen's second novel, also available in a Dover edition) as "novels I will never forget. They open up a whole world of experience and struggle that seemed to me, when I first read them years ago, absolutely absorbing, fascinating, and indispensable."
185 printed pages
Original publication


Julie Laurberg Lund Kofoed
Julie Laurberg Lund Kofoedshared an impression2 years ago
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popstarpassionhas quoted5 months ago
following the fret and strain of the long hours spent among fellow members of a carelessly unkind and gossiping faculty, following the strenuous rigidity of conduct required in this huge educational community of which she was an insignificant part.
dickersonalaijahhas quoted7 months ago
A peculiar characteristic trait, cold, slowly accumulated unreason in which all values were distorted or else ceased to exist,
Lydia Abell
Lydia Abellhas quotedlast year
She felt shamed, betrayed, as if these pale pink and white people among whom she lived had suddenly been invited to look upon something in her which she had hidden away and wanted to forget.

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