Editing Black Aesthetics: Hoyt Fuller, Toni Morrison and 'The Black Book'

Access Restricted

Access to this document is restricted. Some items have been embargoed at the request of the author, but will be made publicly available after the "No Access Until" date.

During the embargo period, you may request access to the item by clicking the link to the restricted file(s) and completing the request form. If we have contact information for a Cornell author, we will contact the author and request permission to provide access. If we do not have contact information for a Cornell author, or the author denies or does not respond to our inquiry, we will not be able to provide access. For more information, review our policies for restricted content.

No Access Until

Permanent Link(s)

Other Titles



Editing Black Aesthetics examines how editors shaped African American literature of the 1960s and 1970s. This period saw the rise of the Black Arts Movement, described by Larry Neal as the “aesthetic and spiritual sister of the Black Power concept,” along with the movement’s signature project: the search for “the Black aesthetic.” The term has been variously defined as a call for Pan-African cultural nationalism as well as a backlash against Eurocentric values in Black art. The period between 1961 and 1976 also saw a rise in independent, Black-owned publishers seeking to cultivate Black audiences across ages and ideologies. Keeping these developments in mind, this project identifies Black aesthetics as a series of editor-led publishing initiatives. These initiatives were reflected across the era’s print culture, from Hoyt Fuller adapting Negro Digest (renamed Black World in 1970) to better reflect the era’s Black radicalism (which I discuss in Chapter 1) to Toni Morrison’s publishing of books by Toni Cade Bambara, Angela Davis, and Middleton A. Harris which challenged Western views of authority and history as top-down (which I discuss in Chapters 2 and 3). By analyzing Black aesthetics in the context of editing and publishing, I demonstrate that its lack of a singular definition is its greatest asset, as it allowed editors to target diffuse audiences of Black readers, in turn accomplishing the another of the era’s central tenets: raising consciousness through art.

Journal / Series

Volume & Issue


160 pages


Date Issued




Black aesthetics; Black arts movement; Fuller Hoyt; Morrison Toni; Print culture; Publishing


Effective Date

Expiration Date




Union Local


Number of Workers

Committee Chair

Braddock, Jeremy

Committee Co-Chair

Committee Member

Attell, Kevin D.
Samuels, Shirley R.
Spires, Derrick R.

Degree Discipline

English Language and Literature

Degree Name

Ph. D., English Language and Literature

Degree Level

Doctor of Philosophy

Related Version

Related DOI

Related To

Related Part

Based on Related Item

Has Other Format(s)

Part of Related Item

Related To

Related Publication(s)

Link(s) to Related Publication(s)


Link(s) to Reference(s)

Previously Published As

Government Document




Other Identifiers


Rights URI


dissertation or thesis

Accessibility Feature

Accessibility Hazard

Accessibility Summary

Link(s) to Catalog Record