We cannot verify your location
Browse Book and Journal Content on Project MUSE
OR
title

Passing the Three Gates

Interviews with Charles Johnson

edited by Jim McWilliams

Publication Year: 2004

A rich portrait of one of America's most original and significant writers. Jim McWilliams has collected more than twenty interviews spanning Johnson's career. The manuscript contains virtually every important interview Johnson has given, presented chronologically.

Published by: University of Washington Press

Contents

pdf iconDownload PDF (33.9 KB)
pp. v-viii

read more

Foreword

pdf iconDownload PDF (58.6 KB)
pp. ix-xvi

First, and before I write another word, I want to thank Jim McWilliams for his astonishing work in carefully selecting the interviews that appear in this volume and, of course, I wish to thank as well the distinguished University of Washington Press for making them available to the reading public. By my count, which is a conservative estimate, ...

read more

Preface

pdf iconDownload PDF (60.7 KB)
pp. xvii-xxvi

First and foremost, Charles Johnson is a teacher. Not only has he taught creative writing at the University of Washington since 1976, and codirected the Twin Tigers studio for martial arts in Seattle since 1986, but also, and more importantly, he has taught through his fiction. As he states to Nicholas O’Connell, “Fiction should open us up to new possibilities. It should clarify for us. It should change our perception.” ...

read more

Acknowledgments

pdf iconDownload PDF (38.3 KB)
p. xxvii-xxvii

First, of course, thanks to Charles Johnson for allowing me to interview him so extensively and for writing the foreword to this collection of interviews. He has been very generous with his time, and I’m deeply grateful. Also, thanks to Carla Kraehenbuehl, my research assistant for fall 2002. ...

Chronology of Charles Johnson’s Life

pdf iconDownload PDF (45.7 KB)
pp. xxix-xxxii

read more

Reflections on Film, Philosophy, and Fiction: An Interview with Charles Johnson (1978)

pdf iconDownload PDF (72.7 KB)
pp. 3-15

Charlie Smith and the Fritter Tree is a film written by novelist Charles Johnson and the life of Charlie Smith, who, at the age of 135, is the oldest person in the United States. The film will be aired as part of the Reprinted from Callaloo 4 (October 1978), by permission of Charles visual, or at least a lot less literary than the other things you’ve...

read more

Charles Johnson (1987)

pdf iconDownload PDF (78.9 KB)
pp. 16-33

Charles Johnson's novels, short stories, and television scripts explore classical problems and metaphysical questions against the background of black American life. His approach to writing is phenomenological, in the style of philosopher Edmund Husserl, but he also draws inspiration from the entire continuum of Asian thought, from the Vedas to Zen Buddhism. ...

read more

Being and Race: An Interview with Charles Johnson (1988)

pdf iconDownload PDF (59.0 KB)
pp. 34-41

Myers : Martin Heidegger’s Existence and Being . . . is that the echo you want readers to hear with the title you picked for Being and Race? ...

read more

Author Navigates Uncharted Waters: Middle Passage Takes Readers on a Spirited Journey (1990)

pdf iconDownload PDF (49.6 KB)
pp. 42-47

Foamy-mouthed dogs chew fingers off human captives. Sailors thrashed by seas as high as mountains succumb to oozing boils and chancres. A dwarf of a captain who makes William Bligh look like a saint brags about barbecuing a cabin boy for dinner. Mutiny is afoot. ...

read more

Winner of National Book Award Won’t Bea “Voice of Black America” (1991)

pdf iconDownload PDF (47.1 KB)
pp. 48-52

Charles Johnson is finding that winning the National Book Award for fiction - one of the publishing world’s most prestigious prizes - can make for much exhilaration, and some trepidation. ...

read more

The Philosopher and the American Novel (1991)

pdf iconDownload PDF (73.1 KB)
pp. 53-67

On January 23, 1991, Charles Johnson lectured about his career and the writing of Middle Passage to an audience at the California State Library. Following the lecture, he fielded questions from the audience. ...

read more

The Sorcerer’s Apprentice (1991)

pdf iconDownload PDF (61.4 KB)
pp. 68-77

About to meet the multifaceted black writer Charles Johnson, one wonders if he’ll manifest himself in a puff of smoke. The man is a novelist, a former cartoonist, a philosopher, an academic, and the coowner of a kung fu studio. His writing is equally hard to categorize. ...

read more

An Interview with Charles Johnson (1992)

pdf iconDownload PDF (73.0 KB)
pp. 78-92

On a recent, rather brilliant May afternoon, I spoke with writer and critic Charles Johnson in his office on the campus of the University of Washington. He had just returned from viewing a film as a juror for the 1992 Seattle International Film festival. ...

read more

A Life of Balance Through Martial Arts (1992)

pdf iconDownload PDF (44.4 KB)
pp. 93-96

It ’s forty minutes into the martial arts class being held in a classroom of the Phinney Neighborhood Center, and perspiration is pouring from Charles Johnson’s brow. A mirror runs across the north end of the classroom, and Johnson, a lanky, forty-four-year-old black man dressed comfortably ...

read more

An Interview with Charles Johnson (1993)

pdf iconDownload PDF (102.1 KB)
pp. 97-122

Like his narrator in Middle Passage (1990), Charles Johnson charts a course through the vexed and volatile issues of multiculturalism and racial politics in America. The rush of publicity Johnson received after his best-selling novel Middle Passage won the National Book Award in 1990 drew attention to his versatile and prolific career as a cartoonist ...

read more

An Interview with Charles Johnson (1993)

pdf iconDownload PDF (85.2 KB)
pp. 156-174

Charles Johnson has written four books of fiction: Faith and the Good Thing (Viking, 1974; Plume, 1991); The Sorcerer’s Apprentice (Atheneum, 1986); Oxherding Tale (Indiana University Press, 1982); and Middle Passage (Atheneum, 1990), which won the 1990 National Book Award in fiction. ...

read more

Charles Johnson: Interview (1993)

pdf iconDownload PDF (77.4 KB)
pp. 175-191

Charles Johnson is the author of the short-story collection The Sorcerer’s Apprentice (1986 PEN/Faulkner Award nominee) and the highly acclaimed novels Faith and the Good Thing, Oxherding Tale, and Middle Passage (winner of the 1990 National Book Award). ...

read more

Interviews with Northwest Writers:Charles Johnson (1993)

pdf iconDownload PDF (118.4 KB)
pp. 159-191

Charles Johnson's most recent novel, Middle Passage, won the National Book Award in 1990. His earlier books are Faith and the Good Thing (1974), Oxherding Tale (1982), The Sorcerer’s Apprentice (1986), Being and Race: Black Writing Since 1970 (1988), and two collections of drawings. ...

read more

An Interview with Charles Johnson (1996)

pdf iconDownload PDF (74.4 KB)
pp. 192-205

When approached to participate in this interview, Charles Johnson responded with his usual enthusiasm: “Send me questions! I’ll try to provide everything on my end.” So I sat down and produced questions dealing with three general areas - artist, art, and audience. To these questions, Johnson responded with insight and wit, providing information that illuminates his writing. ...

read more

A Man of His Word (1998)

pdf iconDownload PDF (55.2 KB)
pp. 206-213

Charles Johnson, ’71, MA ’73, never gets writer’s block. Not when facing a trainload of material for a novel that took seventeen years to research. Not when pumping out a dozen short stories in one month to meet a tight book deadline. And especially not when traipsing through the mountains of Thailand in search of spiritual experiences. ...

read more

A Conversation with Charles Johnson (1998)

pdf iconDownload PDF (97.5 KB)
pp. 214-235

Nash : I’d like to begin with your childhood - what can you tell us about your early life experience that is important to an understanding of your work? How did your home environment influence your development as an artist?

read more

The Human Dimension: An Interview with Writer-Philosopher Charles Johnson (1999)

pdf iconDownload PDF (60.6 KB)
pp. 236-245

Charles Johnson is one of the most prominent writers living in America today. He has published three novels, twenty screenplays, and dozens of essays and reviews. In 1990 his novel Middle Passage earned him the National Book Award; last year he was named a MacArthur fellow by the John D. and Catherine T. MacArthur Foundation. ...

read more

An Interview with Charles Johnson (2002)

pdf iconDownload PDF (99.7 KB)
pp. 246-270

Though perhaps best known as the National Book Award-winning author of the novel Middle Passage, Charles Johnson prefers to think of himself as an artist. “I sometimes see myself mentioned as ‘the novelist Charles Johnson,’ but I don’t think of myself in that way,” he says. “I don’t call myself a writer; I call myself an artist. ...

read more

An Interview with Charles Johnson (2003)

pdf iconDownload PDF (114.4 KB)
pp. 271-299

This interview was conducted by e-mail between August 2002 and January 2003. Carla Kraehenbuehl, my research assistant for fall 2002, contributed the last two questions. ...

read more

Shoulder to the Wheel: An Interview with Charles Johnson (2003)

pdf iconDownload PDF (79.9 KB)
pp. 300-316

This interview by e-mail between February 2001 and July 2003 was conducted for this book to address Johnson’s thoughts concerning Buddhism, with special attention to his newest publication, Turning the Wheel: Essays on Buddhism and Writing. ...

Works by Charles Johnson

pdf iconDownload PDF (41.5 KB)
pp. 317-319

Works about Charles Johnson’s Fiction

pdf iconDownload PDF (44.0 KB)
pp. 320-323

Additional Interviews with Charles Johnson

pdf iconDownload PDF (40.3 KB)
pp. 324-326

Index

pdf iconDownload PDF (140.4 KB)
pp. 327-335


E-ISBN-13: 9780295802169
E-ISBN-10: 0295802162
Print-ISBN-13: 9780295984391
Print-ISBN-10: 0295984392

Publication Year: 2004

Series Title: V Ethel Willis White Books

Research Areas

Recommend

UPCC logo

Subject Headings

  • African American authors -- Interviews.
  • African Americans in literature.
  • Johnson, Charles Richard, 1948- -- Interviews.
  • Authors, American -- 20th century -- Interviews
  • You have access to this content
  • Free sample
  • Open Access
  • Restricted Access