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Sutton E. Griggs and The Hindered Hand

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African American Museum of Dallas

3536 Grand Avenue

Dallas, TX 75210

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Please join us on February 15, 2018 for an event entitled SUTTON E. GRIGGS AND THE HINDERED HAND with Griggs biographer, John Gruesser. Lecture will start at 7 PM in the auditorium at the African American Museum, and is a collaborative program of both the African American Museum and the Dallas Historical Society.


THE HINDERED HAND by Sutton E. Griggs

Edited by John Cullen Gruesser and Hanna Wallinger

Between 1899 and 1908, five long works of fic­tion by the Nashville-based black Baptist minister Sutton E. Griggs appeared in print, making him the most prolific African American novelist at the turn of the twentieth century. Brought out by Griggs’s own Orion Publishing Company in three distinct printings in 1905 and 1906, The Hindered Hand; or, the Reign of the Repressionist addresses the author’s key themes of amalgamation, emigration, armed resistance, and US overseas expansion; includes a melodramatic love story; and features two of the most sensational scenes in early African American fiction—a harrowingly graphic lynching of an inno­cent black couple based on actual events and the elaboration of a plot to wipe out white Southerners by introducing yellow fever germs into the water supply.

Written in response to Thomas Dixon’s recently published race-baiting novel The Leopard’s Spots, Griggs’s book depicts the remnants of the old Southern planter class, the racial crisis threatening the South and the North, the social ferment of the time, the changing roles of women, and the thwart­ed aspirations of a trio of African American veter­ans following the war against Spain. This scholarly edition of the novel, providing newly discovered biographical information and copious historical context, makes a significant contribution to African American literary scholarship.


John Cullen Gruesser is the author of Race, Gender, and Empire in American Detective Fiction; The Empire Abroad and the Empire at Home: African American Literature and the Era of Overseas Expansion; Confluences: Postcolonialism, African American Literary Studies, and the Black Atlantic; and Black on Black: Twentieth-Century African American Writing about Africa. Dr. Gruesser is a professor at Kean University and maintains a website devoted to the life, literature, and legacy of Sutton Griggs (https://sites.google.com/a/kean.edu/suttongriggs/home).

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African American Museum of Dallas

3536 Grand Avenue

Dallas, TX 75210

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