Discussion Notes: The Sellout
Next Month’s novel is Sleeping on Jupiter by Anuradha Roy
Rated: Explicit for Adult Themes and Language
Our guest this month couldn’t make it, but Anais, Maya, and Gerald dove in to this dark satire by Paul Beatty.
The Sellout follows a black, urban farmer who, in an effort to restore the black community in his hometown of Dickens, decides to segregate his community. The novel touches on other dark moments in American black history such as slavery, minstrel entertainment, and the civil rights movement. Gerald enjoyed the novel for its fresh prose, humor, and sheer entertainment value, but, as an outsider to both the black experience and United States history, struggled to connect with the references and message on a personal level. Anais was delighted by the courage in the social commentary and the stream-of-consciousness narrative. Maya loved the slam poetry roots evident in the language, and the use of black culture’s ‘inside voice’, and related several points in the novel to her own experience as a black woman in the United States.
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