Born on August 2, 1924, in New York City, James Baldwin published the 1953 novel Go Tell It on the Mountain, going on to garner acclaim for his insights on race, spirituality and humanity. Other novels included Giovanni's Room, Another Country and Just above My Head as well as essay works like Notes of a Native Son and The Fire Next Time. Having lived in France, he died on December 1, 1987 in Saint-Paul de Vence.
This book tries to make it clear how James Baldwin reveals himself to be an eloquent and passionately committed humanist. As a black writer he pleaded the cause of blacks, but at the same time as a man he devoted himself whole-heartedly to the cause of humanity and in a world of hegemonic ideologies Baldwin articulates the agonies of black people not as a black writer but as an American and exposes, deconstructs and critiques the set agenda of socially motivated stereotypes jostled around the dehumanisation of negroes which to Baldwin was just like the kicking away our own identity, a menacing threat to our precarious security. Baldwin's power as a writer lies in his ability to blend deeply autobiographical with the political and social.