The matter of Black lives : writing from the New Yorker

Format: Print Book 2021
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Summary

A collection of The New Yorker's groundbreaking writing on race in America--including work by James Baldwin, Toni Morrison, Ta-Nehisi Coates, Hilton Als, Zadie Smith, and more--with a foreword by Jelani Cobb

This anthology from the pages of the New Yorker provides a bold and complex portrait of Black life in America, told through stories of private triumphs and national tragedies, political vision and artistic inspiration. It reaches back across a century, with Rebecca West's classic account of a 1947 lynching trial and James Baldwin's "Letter from a Region in My Mind" (which later formed the basis of The Fire Next Time), and yet it also explores our current moment, from the classroom to the prison cell and the upheavals of what Jelani Cobb calls "the American Spring." Bringing together reporting, profiles, memoir, and criticism from writers such as Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie, Elizabeth Alexander, Hilton Als, Vinson Cunningham, Henry Louis Gates, Jr., Malcolm Gladwell, Jamaica Kincaid, Kelefa Sanneh, Doreen St. Félix, and others, the collection offers startling insights about this country's relationship with race. The Matter of Black Lives reveals the weight of a singular history, and challenges us to envision the future anew.



Contents
Letter from a region in my mind / by James Baldwin
The color fetish / by Toni Morrison
Black like them / by Malcolm Gladwell
Barack X / by Jelani Cobb
Now is the time to talk about what we are actually talking about / by Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie
The color of injustice / by Kelefa Sanneh
Quilts / by Andrea Lee
Putting myself together / by Jamaica Kincaid
American inferno / by Danielle Allen
The yellow house / by Sarah Broom
Test case / by Vinson Cunningham
Reaching for the moon / by Jervis Anderson
Saint Pauli / by Kathryn Schulz
Letter from Jackson / by Calvin Trillin
Letter from Selma / by Renata Adler
The charmer / by Henry Louis Gates, Jr.
Mourning for whiteness / by Toni Morrison
The southern strategist / by Jelani Cobb
Phillis Wheatley on trial / by Henry Louis Gates, Jr.
A society of one / by Claudia Roth Pierpont
Hughes at Columbia / by Charlayne Hunter-Gault
King of cats / by Henry Louis Gates, Jr.
Ghosts in the house / by Hilton Als
Secret histories / by Alexis Okeowo
Voice of the century / by Alex Ross
The colossus / by Stanley Crouch
American untouchable / by Emily Nussbaum
Brother from another mother / by Zadie Smith
Radical alienation / by Calvin Tompkins
The shadow act / by Hilton Als
Gettin' paid / by Kelefa Sanneh
The mask of metal-face doom / by Ta-Nehisi Coates
The autofictions of Kendrick Lamar / by Doreen St. Félix
Opera in Greenville / by Rebecca West
Black bodies in motion and in pain / by Edwidge Danticat
A darker presence / by Vinson Cunningham
Before the law / by Jennifer Gonnerman
The forgotten ones / by Rachel Aviv
The color of blood / by Calvin Trillin
The matter of Black lives / by Jelani Cobb
The uprising / by Luke Mogelson
The riot report / by Jill Lepore
How do we change America? / by Keeanga-Yamahtta Taylor
The Trayvon generation / by Elizabeth Alexander
Homecoming / by Hilton Als.

Published Reviews
Publisher's Weekly Review: "New Yorker staff writer Cobb (The Substance of Hope) and editor Remnick (The Bridge) present an expansive anthology of pieces from the magazine's archives on the "political, cultural, and economic questions surrounding race and Black achievement." James Baldwin's "Letter from a Region in My Mind," later published as The Fire Next Time, opens the proceedings, setting a high bar that the collection, for the most part, maintains. Other highlights include Hilton Als's "Homecoming," which interweaves reflections on the 1967 Brownsville uprising and the protests that followed the murder of George Floyd by police in 2020 with insights into the cultural burdens placed on Black artists; Renata Adler's report on the 1964 Selma to Montgomery civil rights march, which captures the homespun feel of the movement before it was mythologized; and Sarah Broom's "The Yellow House," a poignant meditation on the loss of her family home in Hurricane Katrina that became a National Book Award--winning memoir. Beyond the stellar prose, what unites these pieces, which range widely in length, tone, and point of view, is Baldwin's insight, paraphrased by Cobb, that "the American future is precisely as bright or as dark as our capacity to grapple with ." This standout anthology illuminates a matter of perennial concern. (Sept.)"
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Additional Information
Subjects Racism -- United States.
African Americans -- History.
African Americans -- Social conditions.
African Americans -- Politics and government.
United States -- Race relations.
Essays.
Publisher New York, NY :Ecco,2021
Edition First edition.
Other Titles New Yorker (New York, N.Y. : 1925)
Contributors Cobb, Jelani, editor, writer of foreword, contributor.
Remnick, David, editor.
Language English
Notes Foreword by Jelani Cobb.
Description xvi, 828 pages ; 24 cm
ISBN 9780063017597
0063017598
9780063017603
0063017601
Other Classic View