Arguably a contender for the Great American Novel, The Quest of the Silver Fleece is W. E. B. Du Bois's powerful first novel about Zora, a determined, strong Southern black woman who seeks to transcend race and social class in the late nineteenth century. Following the same path of the Greek myth after which it was named, Du Bois's novel confronts not only economic and political circumstances, but also racial and social issues of the time. Over a century after its original publication, we return to The Quest again and again for its political boldness about sexual, gender, and economic institutions. Zora, a breakthrough in the portrayal of black women, stands as a model of courage in a volatile moment in history. The novel portrays not only a story of economics but also of love, gender, and race. With a series introduction by editor Henry Louis Gates, Jr., and an introduction by William L. Andrews, this edition is essential for anyone interested in African American history.
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