Harold Cruse (1916-2005) was born in Petersburg, Virginia, the son of a railway porter. He was raised from a young age in New York City, where he attended high school, after which he served with the Army in Europe during World War II. Cruse attended the City College of New York, although he did not graduate, and was a member of the Communist Party for several years. He also wrote a number of plays and, in the 1960s, was co-founder with LeRoi Jones (Amiri Baraka) of the Black Arts Theater and School in Harlem. After publishing The Crisis of the Negro Intellectual in 1967, Cruse was invited to lecture at the University of Michigan, where he taught in the African-American studies program until his retirement as professor emeritus in the mid-1980s. Harold Cruse was also the author of Rebellion or Revolution?, Plural But Equal: A Critical Study of Blacks and Minorities and America’s Plural Society, and The Essential Harold Cruse: A Reader.