A collection of editorials, book reviews, and essays by the noted and often controversial author features his views on 'The Color Purple,' a critique of '1984,' and a study of the dramatist, August Wilson
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: This gathering of Ishmael Reed's essays, book reviews, and editorials brings us into the ring of debate where Reed boxes his best match against American culture. The champion of controversy challenges the arts as he see them, both from the inside and from his armchair and theater seat. He makes clear his highly publicized views on Steven Spielberg and "The Color Purple" and offers a fascinating critique of George Orwell's "1984" as well as a new look at playwright August Wilson. Reed moves in on the very premises of popular opinion to discuss society as he knows it: the state of black literature, illiteracy, black identity and the media, cultural pluralism and the modern political system. Provocative, often outrageous - always thoughtful - Reed's essays demand our attention, and even his arch detractors take up his challenge, conceding that his is a voice that must be heard. Assaulting the social, political, and artistic ills of our times, this is Ishmael Reed at his best.