13 AUGUST 1927, Page 17

Will the negro develop into a vital and assimilated part

of the tradition and future of the United States ? Mr. Paul Green, who writes an introduction to a fascinating bundle of negro folk-lore and poetry entitled Congaree Sketches (Humphrey Milford, 9s.), and collected by Dr. E. C. L. Adams, thinks he will—thinks he must. But whatever the future holds, there can be no doubt (as indeed all who know the native African would expect) of the negro's place of honour in folk-lore, song and dance, and notably in his peculiar creation, the Spiritual. This little book affords fullest evidence of the fact, and contains typical and most diverting and touching examples of the negro gift for merry story- telling, pathos, and a subtle melancholy which at times seems to verge on cynicism, in " a land [to quote the words of Du Bois, negro poet and reformer] right merry with the sun, where children sing, and rolling hills lie like passioned women wanton

with harvest." * * * *