Go Tell It on the Mountain

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Go Tell It on the Mountain is a 1953 semi-autobiographical novel by James Baldwin. It tells the story of John Grimes, an intelligent teenager in 1930s Harlem, and his relationship with his family and his church. The novel also reveals the back stories of John’s mother, his biological father, and his violent, fanatically religious stepfather, Gabriel Grimes. The novel focuses on the role of the Pentecostal Church in the lives of African Americans, both as a negative source of repression and moral hypocrisy and a positive source of inspiration and community. In 1998, the Modern Library ranked Go Tell It on the Mountain 39th on its list of the 100 best English-language novels of the 20th century. Time Magazine included the novel on its TIME 100 Best English-language Novels from 1923 to 2005.

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