Black History Month – Richard Bruce Nugent


Richard Bruce Nugent (1906-1987)— writer, painter, illustrator, and popular bohemian personality—lived at the center of the Harlem Renaissance. Protégé of Alain Locke, roommate of Wallace Thurman, and friend of Langston Hughes and Zora Neale Hurston, the precocious Nugent stood for thirty years as the only African American writer willing clearly to indicate his homosexuality in print.

His contribution to the landmark publication FIRE!!, the prose composition “Smoke, Lilies and Jade,” was unprecedented in its celebration of same-sex desire. A resident of the notorious “Niggeratti Manor” in 1927-28, Nugent appeared on Broadway in Porgy (the 1927 play) and Run, Little Chillun (1933).

His life was chronicled in the movie “Brother to Brother” starring Anthony Mackie. I have it as one of my movies of the month, click here for more info!