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Recovering Five Generations Hence

The Life and Writing of Lillian Jones Horace

Karen Kossie-Chernyshev

Publication Year: 2013

Born in the 1880s in Jefferson, Texas, Lillian B. Jones Horace grew up in Fort Worth and dreamed of being a college-educated teacher, a goal she achieved. But life was hard for her and other blacks living and working in the Jim Crow South. Her struggles convinced her that education, particularly that involving the printed word, was the key to black liberation.
In 1916, before Marcus Garvey gained fame for advocating black economic empowerment and a repatriation movement, Horace wrote a back-to-Africa novel, Five Generations Hence, the earliest published novel on record by a black woman from Texas and the earliest known utopian novel by any African American woman. She also wrote a biography of Lacey Kirk Williams, a renowned president of the National Baptist Convention; another novel, Angie Brown, that was never published; and a host of plays that her students at I. M. Terrell High School performed. Five Generations Hence languished after its initial publication. Along with Horace’s diary, the unpublished novel, and the Williams biography, the book was consigned to a collection owned by the Tarrant County Black Historical and Genealogical Society and housed at the Fort Worth Public Library. There, scholar and author Karen Kossie-Chernyshev rediscovered Horace’s work in the course of her efforts to track down and document a literary tradition that has been largely ignored by both the scholarly community and general readers. In this book, the full text of Horace’s Five Generations Hence, annotated and contextualized by Kossie-Chernyshev, is once again presented for examination by scholars and interested readers.In 2009 Kossie-Chernyshev invited nine scholars to a conference at Texas Southern University to give Horace’s works a comprehensive interdisciplinary examination. Subsequent work on those papers resulted in the studies that form the second half of this book.

Published by: Texas A&M University Press

Series: Centennial Series of the Association of Former Students, Texas A&M University


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p. 1-1

Series Page, Title Page, Copyright, Dedication

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pp. 2-7


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pp. vii-viii

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pp. ix-x

I am deeply grateful to the following people, and many more besides, who generously gave their time and expertise to help bring this book to fruition: Tom Kellam, hospitable former senior archivist at the Fort Worth Public Library, who gave me access to the Lillian B. Horace Papers; ...

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Introduction: Recovering the Dream Deferred

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pp. 1-10

Recovery projects are simultaneously fascinating and inspiring. They affirm established bodies of knowledge and their affiliated associations, communities, and institutions. They demand a reevaluation of discourses and a restructuring of paradigms. Or they inspire, by their radical nature and sudden appearance, a new phase of creativity and related exploratory acts. ...

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Part I: Five Generations Hence

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pp. 11-102

’Twas early in November in the year 1899,1 one of those bright glorious autumns that strike the heart of an individual but once in a lifetime; other beauteous seasons may come and go, and to another appear as lovely, but to one mind some form or color, some scene or association stamps itself indelibly upon the heart and forms a milestone in the journey of life. ...

Part II: In Scholarly Review: Recovering the Woman and Her Works

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pp. 103-104

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To Leave or Not to Leave? The “Boomerang Migration” of Lillian B. Horace (1880–1965)

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pp. 105-138

Lillian Bertha Jones Horace, a gifted Texas educator whose greatest desire was to write, paused to comment on her desire for a writing instrument that honored her appreciation for the printed word. Her rich private reflections, in tandem with her overlooked creative and nonfiction works—even those she planned to write, ...

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Southwestern Female Authors: Lillian B. Horace and Her Contemporaries

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pp. 139-150

More than forty years ago, I completed a dissertation called “Black Texans, 1900–1930: A History” at Texas Tech University.1 During all the time I worked on what I considered to be that solid piece of research, I never saw the name of Lillian B. Horace, despite journeying to every library at every four-year school in the state of Texas, as well as to the State Library and numerous public libraries. ...

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To Be a Publisher: Lillian Jones Horace and the Dotson-Jones Printing Company

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pp. 151-162

When was the last time you looked at a book? I am not asking you about the last time you read a book. No, I am asking you to recall the last time you examined a book, felt the weight of it in your hand, noticed whether the binding was stitched or glued, rubbed your fingers over an embossed leather cover, listened to the “crack” upon opening a crisp, new volume, or smelled the mold of an old favorite. ...

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Of the Coming of Grace: African American Utopian Fiction, the Black Woman Intellectual, and Lillian B. Jones Horace’s Five Generations Hence

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pp. 163-191

Included by Carol Farley Kessler in the second edition of her anthology Daring to Dream: Utopian Fiction by United States Women before 1950 (1995),1 and now reprinted in its entirety by Karen Kossie-Chernyshev in the present volume, Lillian B. Jones Horace’s Five Generations Hence (1916; hereafter FGH) belongs to the growing body of pre-Harlem Renaissance novels ...

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The Double Burden: A Historical Perspective on Gender and Race Consciousness in the Writings of Lillian B. Jones Horace

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pp. 192-207

Violet Gray, a main character in Lillian B. Horace’s first novel, Five Generations Hence, writes to her friend Grace Noble: “As I read your book, I wondered that so few of our people write, when the world knows so little about us really—so little of our hopes and aspirations, so little of the sting we feel at insult and injury. ...

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Confronting the “Other Side”: Everyday Resistance in Lillian B. Horace’s Angie Brown

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pp. 208-221

In recent years, historians have become increasingly interested in expanding the understanding of the fight for civil rights in the United States. Moving beyond the familiar paradigm of the civil rights movement of the mid-1950s to the mid-1960s, research is extending the chronological boundaries of the movement, connecting civil rights activity from earlier generations with the later movement. ...

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Lillian B. Jones Horace and the Literature of White Estrangement: Rediscovering an African American Intellectual of the Jim Crow Era

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pp. 222-242

Karen Kossie-Chernyshev’s discovery of the diary and literature of Lillian Bertha Jones Horace in the spring of 2003 was an important moment. It was important not only because Horace is “Texas’s earliest known African-American woman novelist, diarist, and biographer”1 or because she exemplifies the resilience and determination of African American women living in the Jim Crow era, ...

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Lillian Horace and the Respectable Black Woman: Black Women’s Activism in Combating Jim Crow

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pp. 243-252

The life and work of Lillian Horace makes a compelling case for reexamining the notion of respectability in African American women’s history and in civil rights history. In contemporary popular culture, respectability has been reduced to a synonym for having a good reputation. ...


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pp. 253-256


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pp. 257-270

Back Cover

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p. 282-282

E-ISBN-13: 9781603449984
E-ISBN-10: 1603449981
Print-ISBN-13: 9781603449779

Page Count: 256
Publication Year: 2013

Series Title: Centennial Series of the Association of Former Students, Texas A&M University