Zora Neale Hurston's Barracoon teaches us distinct lessons about African American literary studies and its relation to the memory of Africa. In this text, Kossula helps us better understand a transatlantic black identity, the tension that exist between those who remember Africa and those who have adopted a black American identity, and the failures of supposed victories and African emigration. This traversing also reminds us that there can be no agreed upon or stable method for charting literary history. Instead, it encourages us to follow a model of historiography that looks for continuity and is more cross-directional than vertical. The archive, of course, requires such a model. Thus, Barracoon's publication, as an archival artifact especially, is also instructive as evidence of the primacy of the archive in relation to canon formation and literary traditions.

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