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Street Poison

Nonfiction: Biography, Multicultural
Unabridged   10.5 hour(s)
Publication date: 08/04/2015

Street Poison

The Biography of Iceberg Slim

Available from major retailers or BUY FROM AMAZON
Audio CD ISBN:9781622317653
Digital Download ISBN:9781622317660


The first and definitive biography of one of America's bestselling, notorious, and influential writers of the twentieth century: Iceberg Slim, nee Robert Beck, author of the multimillion-copy memoir Pimp and such equally popular novels as Trick Baby and Mama Black Widow.

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Product Description

From a career as a, yes, ruthless pimp in the '40s and '50s, Iceberg Slim refashioned himself as the first and still the greatest of "street lit" masters, whose vivid books have made him an icon to such rappers as Ice-T, Jay-Z, and Snoop Dogg and a presiding spirit of "blaxploitation" culture. You can't understand contemporary black (and even American) culture without reckoning with Iceberg Slim and his many acolytes and imitators.

Literature professor Justin Gifford has been researching the life and work of Robert Beck for a decade, culminating in Street Poison, a colorful and compassionate biography of one of the most complicated figures in twentieth-century literature. Drawing on a wealth of archival material lincluding FBI files, prison records, and interviews with Beck, his wife, and his daughters, Gifford explores the sexual trauma and racial violence Beck endured that led to his reinvention as Iceberg Slim, one of America's most infamous pimps of the 1940s and '50s. From pimping to penning his profoundly influential confessional autobiography, Pimp, to his involvement in radical politics, Gifford's biography illuminates the life and works of one of American literature's most unique renegades.


"Narrator JD Jackson's performance gives this literary biography of Robert Beck warmth and animation." —AudioFile

Author Bio

Justin Gifford is a professor of American Literature and African American culture at the University of Nevada, Reno. His most recent courses focus on zombies in American culture and hard-boiled detective fiction of the post-WWII era. He began his research on Iceberg Slim and black crime literature over ten years ago, after buying the legendary author's velvet suits and snakeskin shoes on eBay from his widow, Diane Beck.