Wayward Lives, Beautiful Experiments

Beautifully written and deeply researched, Wayward Lives, Beautiful Experiments examines the revolution of black intimate life that unfolded in Philadelphia and New York at the beginning of the twentieth century.

In wrestling with the question of what a free life is, many young black women created forms of intimacy and kinship indifferent to the dictates of respectability and outside the bounds of law...Here, for the first time, these women are credited with shaping a cultural movement that transformed the urban landscape. Through a melding of history and literary imagination, 
Wayward Lives, Beautiful Experiments recovers these women’s radical aspirations and insurgent desires.

Author(s): Saidiya Hartman


Paperback, W.W. Norton & Company, 2019
464 p, 5.5 × 8.3 in.