Black No More

Publisher: Penguin Classics
The landmark comic satire that asks, “What would happen if all black people in America turned white?”

It’s New Year’s Day 1933 in New York City, and Max Disher, a young black man, has just found out that a certain Dr. Junius Crookman has discovered a mysterious process that allows people to bleach their skin white—a new way to “solve the American race problem.” Max leaps at the opportunity, and after a brief stay at the Crookman Sanitarium, he becomes Matthew Fisher, a white man who is able to attain everything he has ever wanted: money, power, good liquor, and the white woman who rejected him when he was black.

Lampooning myths of white supremacy and racial purity and caricaturing prominent African American leaders like W. E. B. Du Bois, Madam C. J. Walker, and Marcus Garvey, Black No More is a masterwork of speculative fiction and a hilarious satire of America’s obsession with race.

For more than seventy years, Penguin has been the leading publisher of classic literature in the English-speaking world. With more than 1,800 titles, Penguin Classics represents a global bookshelf of the best works throughout history and across genres and disciplines. Readers trust the series to provide authoritative texts enhanced by introductions and notes by distinguished scholars and contemporary authors, as well as up-to-date translations by award-winning translators.

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One

Max Disher stood outside the Honky Tonk Club puffing a panatela and watching the crowds of white and black folk entering the cabaret. Max was tall, dapper and smooth coffee-brown. His negroid features had a slightly satanic cast and there was an insolent nonchalance about his carriage. He...
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PRAISE FOR

“A liberating and lacerating critique of American racial madness, capitalism, and white superiority . . . In the era of Trump and Rachel Dolezal, Beyonce’s ‘Formation’ and that radical Pepsi commercial starring Kendall Jenner, of the rise and fall of Tiger Woods’ land of Cablinasia, and of Michael Jackson’s ‘race lift’ and subsequent death, Schuyler’s wild, misanthropic, take-no-prisoners satire of American life seems more relevant than ever.” —Danzy Senna, from the Introduction

“No one is safe from Schuyler’s biting mockery. . . . Each page unleashes a fusillade of gags and comic sequences, careening from slapstick to blood bath and back again. . . . To borrow a line from Schuyler, the plot twists get ‘more complicated than a flapper’s past’—and about as fun. . . . [Black No More is] unsparing on the madness of racial classification but frank, and very beautiful, on the lure of racial belonging.” —The New York Times

“Very satirical . . . It reminds me in some ways . . . of Paul Beatty’s The Sellout, which . . . has no sacred cows and is also very funny and cutting.” —John Williams, The New York Times Book Review (podcast)

Black No More holds a cynical mirror up to its time, but has plenty to say to our world, too. . . . Schuyler’s mockery spares no one.” —Milwaukee Journal Sentinel

“Extraordinary . . . A satiric tour de force that rips into myths of white supremacy, black nationalism and the American Dream.” —Maureen Corrigan, NPR’s Fresh Air