James Baldwin: Reavealing the Masked Beast
Unlike many other authors, James Baldwin did not write his stories based on his imagination and curiosity. He wrote for realistic issues and altercations that people faced every day. Baldwin was born on August 2, 1924 in Harlem, New York. His family lived in poverty like many other Americans at that time. Their economic hardships aside, Baldwin developed the habit of reading books to escape his everyday struggles. Likely, he would have grown up to be a minister like his father, but instead he started developing an interest in literature. At the age of 17, Baldwin moved to Greenwich village, a place of artistic and sexual freedom, to pursue his dreams. After a while, he started to write a couple of essays and short stories. Being a black and a homosexual writer made it hard for him to have a stable career. Thus he moved to Paris,…show more content… Baldwin also thinks of art as a way of expressing one’s pain. Therefore, the importance of Harlem’s Rennaisance, an artistic movement in the mid-1920s, is extremely significant in his references. Similar to when Baldwin left his family to pursue his dreams, many individuals found peace by using their artistic means to express themselves. Many people that came out of the movement highly inspired Baldwin’s writings, including individuals such as Countee Cullen, Richard Wright, and Beauford Delaney.
Baldwin believed that his involvement in church in a young age helped shaped him as a writer. Even though he was forced to attend church because of his minister father, Baldwin was loyal to the church. However, after moving away from his family, Baldwin claimed that religion has deceived him and he claimed to dedicate his life only to writing. Accordingly, most of his writings express the state of confusion between religious outlooks of his characters and their obstacles, including the character of Sunny in Sunny’s