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Blame it on the boogie

Andrew O’Hagan: In Pursuit of Michael Jackson, 6 July 2006

On Michael Jackson 
by Margo Jefferson.
Pantheon, 146 pp., $20, January 2006, 0 375 42326 5
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... his skin got whiter and whiter, he became a recluse, and he invited children to stay at his ranch. Margo Jefferson’s essay on Michael Jackson displays a lively understanding of black performing history. Thankfully, there is not (yet) a Department of Michael Jackson Studies at Harvard, but Jefferson makes clear the ...

They roared with laughter

Amber Medland: Nella Larsen, 6 May 2021

Passing 
by Nella Larsen.
Macmillan, 160 pp., £10.99, June 2020, 978 1 5290 4028 9
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... with what it means to belong. ‘For they are touchy and proud these Jazz Age heroines,’ Margo Jefferson wrote. They read widely, wear soigné frocks, give smart parties and make clever remarks. They have keen minds, keen features and fair skin, and can be suitably ironic about ‘what called itself Negro society’. They cultivate the ...

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