James Baldwin Quotes
Death PlaceSaint Paul de Vence
EducationDeWitt Clinton High School, The New School
Virtuoso writer and passionate activist James Baldwin has always been in the news. In fact he was one of those African-Americans who were constantly under the scrutiny of the FBI. What makes him such a sought-after celebrity? Let’s find out:
- He shared a relationship with the Church that couldn’t be defined in mere words. He was just 14 when Baldwin became a preacher. He had gone through what he described as a “prolonged religious crisis.” Within three years, he was convinced that Christianity was nothing but a misconception. When questioned about his religious beliefs, Baldwin replied, “I? Now? Nothing, I’m a writer. I like doing things alone.”
- His friends were quite famous too—for more than twenty years, Marlon ‘The Godfather’ Brando and Baldwin were the closest of friends. They even shared rooms when both were young and trying to make a career in New York. Other close acquaintances were Harry Belafonte, Maya Angelou, Toni Morrison, Sidney Poitier and Angela Davis among others. His eulogy was written by Toni Morrison of ‘The Bluest Eye’ fame in 1987 for the ‘New York Times Newspaper’.
- This American writer escaped from home and the United States, travelling all the way to France, fearing for his life owing to the rampant racism in the nation. He said, “My luck was running out. I was going to go to jail, I was going to kill somebody or be killed. My best friend had committed suicide two years earlier, jumping off the George Washington Bridge.”