May 2017

The Asian American Movement
By William Wei

Largely unexamined until recently, the Asian American Movement has been active for more than two decades. William Wei traces to the late 1960s the initial genesis of an Asian American identity, culture, and activism through which members of this pan-Asian group could assert their right to belong to and be respected as responsible members of this society. Although its antecedents were the civil rights and Black Power movements, the Asian American Movement actually resulted from the protests against the Vietnam War and the emergence of a generation of college-aged Chinese and Japanese Americans. In this definitive study of the Asian American Movement, Wei fills an important gap in our knowledge of ethnic social movements and the struggle to achieve American cultural democracy. His study concludes with an examination of Asian American involvement in electoral politics and the quest for political empowerment. Interviews with many of the key participants in the Movement and photographs of Asian American demonstrations and events enhance Wei's portrayal of the development and breadth of the Movement and the conflicts within it. Exploring regional differences; issues of ethnicity, class, and gender; and the transition from radical to electoral politics, Wei's comprehensive study is the first book to examine systematically the coming-to-consciousness and mobilization of Asian Americans.
 

April 2017

Confident Pluralism by John D. Inazu

In Confident Pluralism, John D. Inazu analyzes the current state of the country, orients the contemporary United States within its broader history, and explores the ways that Americans can- and must- live together peaceably despite these deeply engrained difference. Pluralism is one of the founding creeds of the United States- yet America's society and legal system continues to face deep, unsolved structural problems in dealing with differing cultural anxieties, and minority viewpoints. Inazu not only argues that it is possible to cohabitate peacefully in this country, but also lays out realistic guidelines for our society and legal system to achieve the new American dream through civic practices that value toleration over protest, humility over defensiveness, and persuasion over coercion.

March 2017

Dated Emcess by Chinaka Hodge

Chinaka Hodge came of age along with hip-hop and its influence on her suitors became inextricable from their personal interactions.  Form blends with content in Dated Emcees as she examines her love life through the lens of hip-hop's best known orators, characters, archetypes and songs, creating a new and inventive narrative about the music that shaped the craggy heart of a young woman poet, just as it also changed the global landscape of pop.

February 2017

Spectacular Blackness: The Cultural Politics of the Black Power Movement and the Search for a Black Aesthetic
By Amy Abugo Ongiri


Exploring the interface between the cultural politics of the Black Power and the Black Arts movements and the production of postwar African American popular culture, Amy Ongiri shows how the reliance of Black politics on an oppositional image of African Americans was the formative moment in the construction of "authentic blackness" as a cultural identity. While other books have adopted either a literary approach to the language, poetry, and arts of these movements or a historical analysis of them, Ongiri's captures the cultural and political interconnections of the postwar period by using an interdisciplinary methodology drawn from cinema studies and music theory. She traces the emergence of this Black aesthetic from its origin in the Black Power movement's emphasis on the creation of visual icons and the Black Arts movement's celebration of urban vernacular culture.

January 2017

Nobody: Casualties of America’s War on the Vulnerable, from Ferguson to Flint and Beyond
By Marc Lamont Hill

Unarmed citizens shot by police. Drinking water turned to poison. Mass incarcerations. We’ve heard the stories. Now public intellectual and acclaimed journalist Marc Lamont Hill offers a powerful, paradigm-shifting analysis of race and class in America, and what it means to be “Nobody.”

Through on-the-ground reporting and careful research, Hill shows how some American citizens are made vulnerable, exploitable, and disposable through the machinery of unregulated capitalism, public policy, and social practice. This Nobody class, Hill argues, has emerged over time, and forces in America have worked to preserve and exploit it in ways that are both humiliating and harmful. He carefully reconsiders the details of tragic events like the deaths of Michael Brown, Sandra Bland, and Freddie Gray, and the water crisis in Flint, Michigan, and delves deeply into a host of alarming trends including mass incarceration, overly aggressive policing, broken court systems, shrinking job markets, and the privatization of public resources, showing time and again the ways the current system is designed to worsen the plight of the vulnerable.

November 2016

An Indigenous Peoples' History
By Roxanne Dunbar Ortiz

The first history of the United States told from the perspective of indigenous peoples

Today in the United States, there are more than five hundred federally recognized Indigenous nations comprising nearly three million people, descendants of the fifteen million Native people who once inhabited this land. The centuries-long genocidal program of the US settler-colonial regimen has largely been omitted from history. Now, for the first time, acclaimed historian and activist Roxanne Dunbar-Ortiz offers a history of the United States told from the perspective of Indigenous peoples and reveals how Native Americans, for centuries, actively resisted expansion of the US empire.

With growing support for movements such as the campaign to abolish Columbus Day and replace it with Indigenous Peoples’ Day and the Dakota Access Pipeline protest led by the Standing Rock Sioux Tribe, An Indigenous Peoples’ History of the United States is an essential resource providing historical threads that are crucial for understanding the present. In An Indigenous Peoples’ History of the United States, Dunbar-Ortiz adroitly challenges the founding myth of the United States and shows how policy against the Indigenous peoples was colonialist and designed to seize the territories of the original inhabitants, displacing or eliminating them. And as Dunbar-Ortiz reveals, this policy was praised in popular culture, through writers like James Fenimore Cooper and Walt Whitman, and in the highest offices of government and the military. Shockingly, as the genocidal policy reached its zenith under President Andrew Jackson, its ruthlessness was best articulated by US Army general Thomas S. Jesup, who, in 1836, wrote of the Seminoles: “The country can be rid of them only by exterminating them.”
 

October 2016

Art and Social Movements: Cultural Politics in Mexico and Aztlán
by Edward J. McCaughan
Art and Social Movements offers a comparative, cross-border analysis of the role of visual artists in three social movements from the late 1960s through the early 1990s: the 1968 student movement and related activist art collectives in Mexico City, a Zapotec indigenous struggle in Oaxaca, and the Chicano movement in California. Based on extensive archival research and interviews, Edward J. McCaughan explores how artists helped to shape the identities and visions of a generation of Mexican and Chicano activists by creating new visual discourses.
McCaughan argues that the social power of activist artists emanates from their ability to provoke people to see, think, and act in innovative ways. Artists, he claims, help to create visual languages and spaces through which activists can imagine and perform new collective identities and forms of meaningful citizenship. The artists' work that he discusses remains vital today—in movements demanding fuller democratic rights and social justice for working people, women, ethnic communities, immigrants, and sexual minorities throughout Mexico and the United States. Integrating insights from scholarship on the cultural politics of representation with structural analyses of specific historical contexts, McCaughan expands our understanding of social movements.

 

September 2016

Everyday Antiracism: Getting Real About Race in School
by Mica Pollock
Which acts by educators are "racist" and which are "antiracist"? How can an educator constructively discuss complex issues of race with students and colleagues? In Everyday Antiracism, leading educators deal with the most challenging questions about race in school, offering invaluable and effective advice.
Contributors including Beverly Daniel Tatum, Sonia Nieto, and Pedro Noguera describe concrete ways to analyze classroom interactions that may or may not be "racial," deal with racial inequality and "diversity," and teach to high standards across racial lines. Topics range from using racial incidents as teachable moments and responding to the "n-word" to valuing students' home worlds, dealing daily with achievement gaps, and helping parents fight ethnic and racial misconceptions about their children. Questions following each essay prompt readers to examine and discuss everyday issues of race and opportunity in their own classrooms and schools.
For educators and parents determined to move beyond frustrations about race, Everyday Antiracism is an essential tool.

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