Baker, Houston A., Jr. A Many-Colored Coat of Dreams: The Poetry of Countée Cullen. Detroit: Broadside Press, 1974. This brief and somewhat difficult volume examines Cullen’s poetry in the context of a black American literature that is published and criticized largely by a white literary establishment. Presents a new view of Cullen’s poetry by holding it up to the light of black literary standards.
Bronz, Stephen H. “Countée Cullen.” In Roots of Negro Racial Consciousness: The 1920’s, Three Harlem Renaissance Writers. New York: Libra, 1964. After a brief summary of Cullen’s early life, Bronz examines Cullen’s writings in chronological order. He is most interested in the poetry and in whether Cullen succeeds in creating characters who are interesting individuals rather than vague representatives of their race. His conclusion is that Cullen fails.
Ferguson, Blanche E. Countée Cullen and the Negro Renaissance. New York: Dodd, Mead, 1966. The only book-length study of Countée Cullen for many years, this volume is a highly fictionalized biography. In a pleasant and simple style, Ferguson walks readers through major events in Cullen’s life. Includes eight photographs, a brief bibliography, and an index.
Onyeberechi, Sydney. Critical Essays: Achebe, Baldwin, Cullen, Ngugi, and Tutuola. Hyattsville, Md.: Rising Star, 1999. A collection of Onyeberechi’s criticism and interpretation of the work of several African American authors. Includes bibliographic references.
Perry, Margaret. A Bio-Bibliography of Countée Cullen. Westport, Conn.: Greenwood Press, 1971. After a brief biographical sketch, Perry offers a valuable bibliography of Cullen’s works and a sensitive reading of the poetry.
Schwarz, A. B. Christa. Gay Voices of the Harlem Renaissance. Bloomington: Indiana University Press, 2003. Schwarz examines the work of four leading writers from the Harlem Renaissance—Countée Cullen, Langston Hughes, Claude McKay, and Richard Bruce Nugent—and their sexually nonconformist or gay literary voices.
Tuttleton, James W. “Countée Cullen at ‘The Heights.’” In The Harlem Renaissance: Revaluations, edited by Amritjit Singh, William S. Shiver, and Stanley Brodwin. New York: Garland, 1989. Examines Cullen’s years at New York University and analyzes his senior honors thesis on Edna St. Vincent Millay. Tuttleton argues that this period was very important to Cullen’s emergence as a poet.