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text 2020-06-02 14:13
#BlackOutTuesday
Kindred - Octavia E. Butler
Beloved - Toni Morrison
The New Jim Crow: Mass Incarceration in the Age of Colorblindness - Michelle Alexander
The Audacity of Hope: Thoughts on Reclaiming the American Dream - Barack Obama
The Warmth of Other Suns: The Epic Story of America's Great Migration - Isabel Wilkerson
If Beale Street Could Talk - James Baldwin
Narrative of the Life of Frederick Douglass (Wisehouse Classics Edition) - Frederick Douglass
African American Women in the Struggle for the Vote, 1850�1920 - Rosalyn Terborg-Penn
Hidden Figures: The Untold Story of the African-American Women Who Helped Win the Space Race - Margot Lee Shetterly
We Were Eight Years in Power: An American Tragedy - Ta-Nehisi Coates

Here are some books by African American authors you may want to read:

 

Kindred by Octavia Butler: The first science fiction written by a black woman, Kindred has become a cornerstone of black American literature. This combination of slave memoir, fantasy, and historical fiction is a novel of rich literary complexity. Having just celebrated her 26th birthday in 1976 California, Dana, an African-American woman, is suddenly and inexplicably wrenched through time into antebellum Maryland. After saving a drowning white boy there, she finds herself staring into the barrel of a shotgun and is transported back to the present just in time to save her life. During numerous such time-defying episodes with the same young man, she realizes the challenge she’s been given...

 

Beloved by Toni Morrison: Winner of the Pulitzer Prize, Toni Morrison’s Beloved is a spellbinding and dazzlingly innovative portrait of a woman haunted by the past. Sethe was born a slave and escaped to Ohio, but eighteen years later she is still not free. She has borne the unthinkable and not gone mad, yet she is still held captive by memories of Sweet Home, the beautiful farm where so many hideous things happened. Meanwhile Sethe’s house has long been troubled by the angry, destructive ghost of her baby, who died nameless and whose tombstone is engraved with a single word: Beloved.

The New Jim Crow: Mass Incarceration in the Age of Colorblindness
by Michelle Alexander: "Jarvious Cotton's great-great-grandfather could not vote as a slave. His great-grandfather was beaten to death by the Klu Klux Klan for attempting to vote. His grandfather was prevented from voting by Klan intimidation; his father was barred by poll taxes and literacy tests. Today, Cotton cannot vote because he, like many black men in the United States, has been labeled a felon and is currently on parole." 
As the United States celebrates the nation's "triumph over race" with the election of Barack Obama, the majority of young black men in major American cities are locked behind bars or have been labeled felons for life. Although Jim Crow laws have been wiped off the books, an astounding percentage of the African American community remains trapped in a subordinate status--much like their grandparents before them.

 

 

 
The Audacity of Hope: Thoughts on Reclaiming the American Dream
by Barack Obama: The Audacity of Hope is Barack Obama's call for a new kind of politics—a politics that builds upon those shared understandings that pull us together as Americans. Lucid in his vision of America's place in the world, refreshingly candid about his family life and his time in the Senate, Obama here sets out his political convictions and inspires us to trust in the dogged optimism that has long defined us and that is our best hope going forward.
 
The Warmth of Other Suns: The Epic Story of America's Great Migration
by Isabel Wilkerson: n this epic, beautifully written masterwork, Pulitzer Prize–winning author Isabel Wilkerson chronicles one of the great untold stories of American history: the decades-long migration of black citizens who fled the South for northern and western cities, in search of a better life. From 1915 to 1970, this exodus of almost six million people changed the face of America. Wilkerson compares this epic migration to the migrations of other peoples in history. She interviewed more than a thousand people, and gained access to new data and official records, to write this definitive and vividly dramatic account of how these American journeys unfolded, altering our cities, our country, and ourselves.
 
If Beale Street Could Talk by James Baldwin: In this honest and stunning novel, James Baldwin has given America a moving story of love in the face of injustice. Told through the eyes of Tish, a nineteen-year-old girl, in love with Fonny, a young sculptor who is the father of her child, Baldwin's story mixes the sweet and the sad. Tish and Fonny have pledged to get married, but Fonny is falsely accused of a terrible crime and imprisoned. Their families set out to clear his name, and as they face an uncertain future, the young lovers experience a kaleidoscope of emotions-affection, despair, and hope. In a love story that evokes the blues, where passion and sadness are inevitably intertwined, Baldwin has created two characters so alive and profoundly realized that they are unforgettably ingrained in the American psyche.
 
Narrative of the Life of Frederick Douglass (The Autobiographies #1) by Frederick Douglass. Autobiography of Frederick Douglass. 
 
African American Women in the Struggle for the Vote, 1850-1920
by Rosalyn Terborg-Penn: Drawing from original documents, Rosalyn Terborg-Penn constructs a comprehensive portrait of the African American women who fought for the right to vote. She analyzes the women's own stories of why they joined and how they participated in the U.S. women's suffrage movement. Not all African American women suffragists were from elite circles. Terborg-Penn finds working-class and professional women from across the nation participating in the movement. Some employed radical, others conservative means to gain the right to vote. But Black women were unified in working to use the ballot to improve both their own status and the lives of Black people in their communities.
 
Hidden Figures by Margot Lee Shetterly: The #1 New York Times Bestseller. Set amid the civil rights movement, the never-before-told true story of NASA’s African-American female mathematicians who played a crucial role in America’s space program. Before Neil Armstrong walked on the moon, a group of professionals worked as ‘Human Computers’, calculating the flight paths that would enable these historic achievements. Among these were a coterie of bright, talented African-American women. Segregated from their white counterparts, these ‘coloured computers’ used pencil and paper to write the equations that would launch rockets and astronauts, into space. Moving from World War II through NASA’s golden age, touching on the civil rights era, the Space Race, the Cold War and the women’s rights movement, ‘Hidden Figures’ interweaves a rich history of mankind’s greatest adventure with the intimate stories of five courageous women whose work forever changed the world. 
 
We Were Eight Years in Power: An American Tragedy by Ta-Nehisi Coates: "We were eight years in power" was the lament of Reconstruction-era black politicians as the American experiment in multiracial democracy ended with the return of white supremacist rule in the South. Now Ta-Nehisi Coates explores the tragic echoes of that history in our own time: the unprecedented election of a black president followed by a vicious backlash that fueled the election of the man Coates argues is America's "first white president."
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review 2019-07-16 20:20
Dreams from my Father
Dreams from My Father: A Story of Race and Inheritance - Barack Obama
I Picked Up This Book Because: Curiosity? I think mostly I wanted to get to know Michelle’s other half.


Mr Obama has had a varied and well traveled life. He has experienced many cultures and taken advantage of the knowledge gained. While I feel like I learned a lot about his past I don’t feel like this book changed the way I see him. It was personal without being personal. I know that makes no sense but that’s the best way I can describe it.

The Random Thoughts:



The Score Card:

description

3 Stars
 
 
 
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text 2019-03-30 06:15
Questlove Says Obama Once Asked Him To Play French Montana's 'Pop That' At A White House Party

From his public playlists featuring artist like Jay-Z, Kendrick Lamar, Cardi B and J. Cole to the various winks and nods to the culture in his speeches, Barack Obama has made it clear that he is a fan of hip-hop music.

 

But thanks to famed drummer for The Roots, Questlove, we have an even more clear idea of just how well-versed the 45th President of the United States is in hip-hop music and culture.

 

On an appearance on Malcolm Gladwell and Rick Rubin’s ‘Broken Record’ podcast, QuestLove told the story of then-president Obama interrupting QuestLove’s 6-hour set at the final White House party, to request a song by French Montana.

 

“[Obama’s] coming up to me like, ‘Do you have French Montana?’ And I’m like, ‘Sir! I don’t have the clean versions of that.’ He’s like, ‘We’re all adults here. Play it!’ I’m like, ‘Sir, I’m not gonna play ‘Pop that pu**y, b***h.’'” Questlove recalled, paraphrasing the hook of Montana’s 2013 lead single “Pop That.”

 

Read more, here: https://bit.ly/2uBM3hC

 

Source: blavity.com/questlove-says-obama-once-asked-him-to-play-french-montanas-pop-that-at-a-white-house-party
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review 2018-09-08 04:49
Who is Barack Obama?
Who Is Barack Obama? - Roberta Edwards,Nancy Harrison,John O'Brien,John O'Brien

Who is Barack Obama? by Roberta Edwards is a chapter book that explores the background of the 44th President of the United Sates, Barack Obama.  The book states where Barack Obama grew up and how he came to become one of our presidents.  Within the book are short inserts of information vaguely mentioned within the main storyline of the book.  These sections give more details to help readers understand the content.  For example, there were short inserts in the book that discussed Jim Crow Laws and different countries Barack Obama visited, like Indonesia.  Who is Barack Obama? gives many opportunities for different history lessons to teach about, like Civil Rights, the U.S. Constitution, and a state students may be unfamiliar with in specific details (Hawaii).  An activity that could be done with this book is to have the students act out the three branches of government and the roles of the three in the constitution.  Who is Barack Obama? has a Lexile reading level of 740L, which is Grades 3 to 4.       

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review 2018-03-30 14:44
The role of race in Barack Obama's life
The Bridge: The Life and Rise of Barack Obama - David Remnick

Barack Obama’s victory in the 2008 presidential election represented not just a milestone in terms of American history, but a new stage in the nation’s enduring struggle over race.  It was an issue that Obama had to deal with throughout the campaign, not just from whites but from blacks as well, as he faced charges that he was not “black” enough.  In this book David Remnick, the editor of New Yorker magazine, offers us a study of Obama’s life within the context of the issue of race.  In it, he addresses not just the issues that he faced over the course of his life, but how in many respects they reflect the broader challenges that African Americans and whites faced in an era of dramatic change in the notions of race and equality within the nation as a whole.

 

The issue of race emerged early for Obama.  Growing up in Hawai’i, he experienced a very different type of racial environment than elsewhere in America, one with far greater racial diversity and far less overt animosity, than was the case on the mainland at the time.  It was in that unique environment that he first wrestled with the issues of his self-definition, a struggle that continued throughout his college career, first in Los Angeles, then in New York City.  By the time he graduated, he was a man comfortable with his own identity and the role he wanted to play within the larger community.  Remnick’s account here is traditionally biographical in its scope, drawing considerably upon Obama’s own memoir, but adding to it with the subsequent reporting.  He maintains this approach through much of his post-collegiate career, through his time as a community organizer, law school student, and attorney and budding politician.  It is with his election to the United States Senate that the focus narrows to the twin issues of Obama’s presidential run and the intertwining of his political aspirations with race.

 

By the time Remnick reaches the end of his book – with the election of Obama to the White House, he has given readers a well-researched and perceptive look at both Barack Obama’s life and the role of race within it.  While not comprehensive, it is one of  the best and most complete biography of the 44th president that we are likely to have for some time, and one that subsequent studies will rely upon for the wealth of information it provides.  Anyone wishing to learn about Barack Obama would do well to start with this clearly written and dispassionate look at Obama, both for the insights it offers into him and for its analysis of a critical dimension of his life and career.

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