ONCE ACCLAIMED BY FIGURES as diverse as Eugene O’Neill, Henry Miller, and A. Philip Randolph, but later forgotten, the West Indian radical Hubert Henry Harrison is enjoying renewed prominence as a result of Jeffrey B. Perry’s recent biography, Hubert Harrison: The Voice of Harlem Radicalism, 1883–1918, the first of two projected volumes. Perry’s achievement in resuscitating his long-forgotten subject should not be understated, for Harrison’s significance has been largely overlooked. For example, Harold Cruse’s The Crisis of the Negro Intellectual deals extensively with the radical West Indian Harlem milieu but mentions Harrison only briefly. Perry’s research, using many untapped primary sources including Harrison’s private diary, will likely remain definitive for a long time to come, at least as regards the man himself, from his reading habits and sexual conquests to his uncompromising radicalism.
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