French journals feature Centenary Jack London expert
november 3, 2016
SHREVEPORT, LA — The Fall 2016 issue of Reliefs features among its contents "Le Gospel de Jack London" by Earle Labor, Emeritus Professor of American Literature at Centenary College.
Reliefs is a handsomely illustrated new quarterly journal "focused on adventure, ecology, culture, and geography" and which "dedicates many articles to explorers and explorations, past and present, to show the beauty of this planet and explain how it works with scientists." Editor Sarah Osrodka reached out to Professor Labor, telling him, "We were fascinated by your book on Jack London, a hero whose extraordinary life would fit in this section of Reliefs amazingly."
In his substantial article, Labor discusses Jack London's remarkable career, including his rise from illegitimacy, poverty, crime, factory work, hoboing, and gold-prospecting to become America's most popular and highest paid writer. In addition to covering London's spectacular adventures as a world traveler/explorer, Labor discloses lesser-known facts like London's close relationship to the African-American community in Oakland, California, and his teenage love affair with a lovely young woman in that community--as well as later ecological pioneering and agricultural innovations in his famous "Beauty Ranch,” and his indictment of the collusion between Big Business and Washington Politics in his play, Theft.
Labor is considered the leading authority on the life and works of Jack London. Historian Douglas Brinkley calls him "the true-blue dean of London studies" and recommends his Jack London: An American Life (Farrar, Straus & Giroux, 2013) as "brilliantly researched and elegantly written." Labor's biography has elicited similar praise from reviewers in such notable media as The New York Times, Washington Post, Wall Street Journal, and PBS. The book won the Western Writers of America 2014 Golden Spur Award for Best Western Biography.
Labor's book and his affiliation with Centenary College is also referenced in his interview by Jerome Skalski, which appears in the October issue of the French journal Humanité.