How to Be an Antiracist

How to Be an Antiracist

eBook - 2019
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#1 NEW YORK TIMES BESTSELLER • From the National Book Award–winning author of Stamped from the Beginning comes a “groundbreaking” (Time) approach to understanding and uprooting racism and inequality in our society—and in ourselves.
“The most courageous book to date on the problem of race in the Western mind.”—The New York Times
NAMED ONE OF THE BEST BOOKS OF THE YEAR BY The New York Times Book Review • Time • NPR • The Washington Post • Shelf Awareness • Library Journal Publishers Weekly Kirkus Reviews
Antiracism is a transformative concept that reorients and reenergizes the conversation about racism—and, even more fundamentally, points us toward liberating new ways of thinking about ourselves and each other. At its core, racism is a powerful system that creates false hierarchies of human value; its warped logic extends beyond race, from the way we regard people of different ethnicities or skin colors to the way we treat people of different sexes, gender identities, and body types. Racism intersects with class and culture and geography and even changes the way we see and value ourselves. In How to Be an Antiracist, Kendi takes readers through a widening circle of antiracist ideas—from the most basic concepts to visionary possibilities—that will help readers see all forms of racism clearly, understand their poisonous consequences, and work to oppose them in our systems and in ourselves.
Kendi weaves an electrifying combination of ethics, history, law, and science with his own personal story of awakening to antiracism. This is an essential work for anyone who wants to go beyond the awareness of racism to the next step: contributing to the formation of a just and equitable society.
Praise for How to Be an Antiracist
“Ibram X. Kendi’s new book, How to Be an Antiracist, couldn’t come at a better time. . . . Kendi has gifted us with a book that is not only an essential instruction manual but also a memoir of the author’s own path from anti-black racism to anti-white racism and, finally, to antiracism. . . .  How to Be an Antiracist gives us a clear and compelling way to approach, as Kendi puts it in his introduction, ‘the basic struggle we’re all in, the struggle to be fully human and to see that others are fully human.’ ”—NPR
“Kendi dissects why in a society where so few people consider themselves to be racist the divisions and inequalities of racism remain so prevalent. How to Be an Antiracist punctures the myths of a post-racial America, examining what racism really is—and what we should do about it.”Time
Publisher: Random House Publishing Group


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🤨 There's a lot of stuff about how he kept his Nikes from wrinkling, and wore honey-colored contact lenses. Surely that's his problem, not mine.

May 20, 2021

Sure, Kendi may be cashing in a touch with the manifold versions of this text, but this is a solid 3.5-5 star read, depending on your politics and emotional state, and I would say it stays true to its objective of educating those who recognize inequality and do not want to passively or actively recreate it.
These 1-star reviewers don't seem to have read the book. I suspect they are just "I'm not racist" types coincidentally trolling books Tucker Carlson expresses distaste for.

This isn't a slam-dunk conviction, but if you are...

- or -

... some would say the two anti's just cancel out.

May 18, 2021

Mao's Cultural Revolution officially took place between 1966 to 1976 ---- during several of those years I was stationed with a SIGINT group tasked with monitoring the Chicoms (a combined US military/Nationalist Chinese unit) and we were frequently horrified at hearing of children either turning in the parents for executions for thought crimes, or executing one or both parents themselves! The blog piece below somewhat captures the horrors of those times. This is what Kendi wants for America; this is what the Maoist brigades of antifa/BLM fervently wish for: the ending of America!
(In Josh Rogin's book, "Chaos Under Heaven" he mentions the plight of Uyghur--American, Vera, who makes the grave mistake of returning to Xinjiang to visit her family several years ago and she is incarcerated in a "reeducation camp" for no reason --- since she's a student at U.W. - the University of Washington - and they continue to charge her tuition fees during this time, her mother approaches the college president for help in the matter. She is soundly rebuffed -- U.W. explains they have a multi-million dollar contract with China so it's a no-go! Too many Americans who have sold their souls to the devil!)

May 12, 2021

This is a not a yellow-covered “Antiracism For Dummies” book. Commenters seem to be at the 1-star or 5-star extremes, with little midground to establish a normal distribution. One might wish that Star Gladiator would not pull his punches and tell us how he really feels. And yes, I’m too old to feel comfortable with woke pronouns. I read this as autobiographical, with lessons learned to build a Weltanschauung. Kendi’s discussion of the difference between protests and demonstrations was helpful to me, having been involved in any number of each. The writing is good. The book should be read by anybody involved in a wide-ranging discussion of racism.

Apr 24, 2021

This book is scarier than a Stephen King novel, because it is NOT fiction. CRT and Marxist Socialism has crept into every aspect of our cancel-culture. As Kendi says, you cannot stay silent. You must denounce your "racism" through words and / or actions. If you fail to do so, then you are a "racist!". Seek out Christopher Rufo on YouTube and elsewhere, on what CRT means for you and your kids.

Apr 07, 2021

Deb O's suggestion for inclusion (diversity)

Apr 05, 2021

In the first chapter Mr. Kendi states: " . . . A racist policy is any measure that produces or sustains racial inequity between racial groups. An antiracist policy is any measure that produces or sustains racial equity between racial groups. . . . There is no such thing as a nonracist or race-neutral policy. . . . The only remedy to racist discrimination is anti-racist discrimination. . . ."

It didn't take him long to push discrimination. This would've been music to Karl Marx's ears.

Throughout the book Kendi repeatedly calls for equity (equality of outcome) while ignoring the concept of equality (equality of opportunity).

An example of what he wants: Two students enroll in the same class. Both are given the same opportunity (equality of opportunity) to complete course material and earn a grade. Student A earns 85% while student B earns 55% . Course work for both has been evaluated with the same standards. Because the teacher wants both to understand how equity works he takes 15 points from A and gives them to B thereby making their results equitable (equality of outcome).

Kendi purports to be interested in ending racism: he is really using a convoluted discussion of racism to push a communist agenda.

The book was written in a stream of consciousness style which perhaps adds punch for some to Kendi's arguments but which generally detracts from reader understanding.

Feb 16, 2021

This is a very fantastic book by a remarkable person. Yes, it is difficult - I read a chapter or two at a time to give time for reflection. He uses episodes from his life to introduce and highlight points. After reading 30 pages in a library copy I bought it and will go back to it from time to time - like the best philosophy, how to strive to live a better life.

Feb 13, 2021

Exceptional! An excellent resource for anyone and everyone. A well paced blend of history, personal connection and practical use. Very accessible for white folks and a must read for anyone wanting to make this world a better, kinder, more accepting place.

Jan 30, 2021

I'm glad I read this, and it's great food for thought, but it's a slog to get through. The passages where he relates incidents from his past, and the history of racism, are well-written, but when he gets into 'articulating' his theories about racism, it's really hard to follow him through his convoluted, tortuous sentences and (as others have pointed out) his circular definitions. I stuck it out to the end, and his humanity shone through in the last couple of pages. Have to give him credit for working so hard to think through what racism is and doing his best to identify it and find ways to counteract it, in himself and others. But his focus on policy alone as the way to combat racism -- for me I kept wanting him to provide examples of how this is supposed to work. For example, there are already policies in place that disallow discrimination on the basis of race in hiring or renting apartments. But if businesses or landlords just plain refuse to follow those policies, then where are we? Like many problems we face, people often set up false dichotomies and say 'the solution is this and this alone', when in reality there are many facets and we need to attack the problem from more than one angle. Changing policies is certainly one facet, but we also need education and efforts to change individuals' attitudes. It's not one or the other. But anyway this is a starting point, and I will read more books and articles on this topic.

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