Utopian Studies 31 (1):97-117 (2020)

Abstract
Sutton Elbert Griggs wrote the first major African-American political novel, Imperium in Imperio. Imperium is a utopian novel and the first novel to represent the New Negro, a figure that Alain Locke popularized a quarter of a century later. Griggs used the term New Negro to refer to a generation of educated black Americans born after emancipation, a multiplicity of voices that demanded equality at the turn of the twentieth century. The 1890s are often described as the nadir of race relations in the United States, for blacks were disfranchised, legally segregated, and subject to terrorist mob violence in the form of lynching and burning alive. Race war was in the air.Sutton Griggs was born...
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DOI 10.5325/utopianstudies.31.1.0097
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