The Cotillion: Or One Good Bull is Half the Herd

Beautiful, high stepping Yoruba of Harlem is invited to the annual cotillion thrown by African American high society of Queens Caught between the indifference of her father, the excitement of her social climbing mother, and her prodigal boyfriend s militancy, Yoruba persuades her sister debutantes to challenge the aging doyennes in one of the most sidesplitting scenes inBeautiful, high stepping Yoruba of Harlem is invited to the annual cotillion thrown by African American high society of Queens Caught between the indifference of her father, the excitement of her social climbing mother, and her prodigal boyfriend s militancy, Yoruba persuades her sister debutantes to challenge the aging doyennes in one of the most sidesplitting scenes in American literature.Nominated for a Pulitzer in 1972, Killens s uproarious satire captures the conflicts within black society in the 1960s The Cotillion is the fourth title in Coffee House Press s acclaimed Black Arts Movement series.John Oliver Killens was born in Macon, Georgia in 1916 Co founder of the Harlem Writers Guild, he taught at Howard and Columbia Universities His other novels include And Then We Heard the Thunder, and The Great Black Russian.
The Cotillion Or One Good Bull is Half the Herd Beautiful high stepping Yoruba of Harlem is invited to the annual cotillion thrown by African American high society of Queens Caught between the indifference of her father the excitement of her soci

  • Title: The Cotillion: Or One Good Bull is Half the Herd
  • Author: John Oliver Killens Alexs D. Pate
  • ISBN: 9781566891196
  • Page: 223
  • Format: Paperback
  • 1 thought on “The Cotillion: Or One Good Bull is Half the Herd”

    1. The grandfather of the Black Arts Movement, John Oliver Killens crafted a humorous satirical look at the Black community at a time when Black consciousness was coming into vogue. All the major themes are present, good hair/bad hair, light skin/dark skin, aesthetic faculties, etc. Although the language is a little dated-the novel was written in 1971-it doesn't detract from the story. While clearly the writer falls on the "black is beautiful" side of the nationalist/integrationist debate, the nove [...]

    2. This is a re-read. I first read this book 40 years ago. With the first 3 lines, I had named my daughter."Hey!CALL HER YORUBA, RIGHT?High Priestess of the Nation!"for you, Yoruba Pettiford.

    3. John O. Killens is one of those forgotten African American novelists who sheds so much light on the politics of race, class, and gender, especially during the 60s and 70s. He makes his stance rather clearly in The Cotillion. Set in the late 60s, the narrator tells the story of Yoruba Lovejoy's reluctant coming-out ceremony, Harlem style, and all the race and class issues that ensue. The satirical nature of the novel comes full circle as I think about many of the cultural battle cries that still [...]

    4. Amazing book -- a must-read, in my opinion, for anyone who wants to better understand race relations, human behavior. I'm so glad this was on our book club reading list! First thing I did when I finished, was start at the beginning again. There's just so much here the basic tenets of human nature, social hierarchy, presented by thoroughly-expressed characters. The fact that the events happened during my lifetime provides some additional appeal, a chance to see new angles on and ways to look at e [...]

    5. This is one of my favorite books. Cutting sarcasm and humor. I read it for the first time when I was about 19 and it was one of the first books that made me actively question what it means to be "black" and ideas of "racial authenticity". Despite this Killens manages not to be preachy and the characters in the books are constantly entertaining. Very well executed satire.

    6. This was one of my absolute favorite books as an adolescent. I wish more of John Oliver Killens' work still print.

    7. I discovered John Oliver Killens about five or six years ago when I checked out a raggedy copy of 'Youngblood' from the public library. I just fell completely in love with his writing. Then, I checked out this title and wasn't able to finish it because life got hectic. Thanks to , now, I'm in the process of adding his works to my library.

    8. This book is a satire of intra-racism and a glorification of the 60's. Its humor makes it a great companion to A Confederacy of Dunces. Yoruba and Daphne are a bit one-sided as characters for my taste, but Lamumba's efforts to dress respectably are touching and hilarious.

    9. Written in 1971, a great way to dig into three-pronged dilemma of blacks wanting to assimilate in general into American society, black bias toward lighter-skinned, less "African" blacks, and struggling to find their pride of heritage/ancestry

    10. This book was one of the first that made me laugh out loud. A painfully accurate satire of Black Nationalism, African-American Bourgeoisie and urban living. I LOVED IT!

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