How to Be An Antiracist

How to Be An Antiracist

Book - 2019 | First edition.
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""The only way to undo racism is to consistently identify and describe it -- and then dismantle it." Ibram X. Kendi's concept of antiracism reenergizes and reshapes the conversation about racial justice in America -- but even more fundamentally, points us toward liberating new ways of thinking about ourselves and each other. In How to Be an Antiracist, Kendi asks us to think about what an antiracist society might look like, and how we can play an active role in building it. In this book, Kendi weaves an electrifying combination of ethics, history, law, and science, bringing it all together with an engaging personal narrative of his own awakening to antiracism. How to Be an Antiracist is an essential work for anyone who wants to go beyond an awareness of racism to the next step: contributing to the formation of a truly just and equitable society." -- Provided by publisher.
Publisher: New York : One World, [2019]
Edition: First edition.
Copyright Date: ©2019
ISBN: 9780525509288
Branch Call Number: 305.8009 KENDI
Characteristics: viii, 305 pages ; 19 cm


From Library Staff


Framed by his own journey to anti-racism, Kendi offers a path of self-exploration that takes readers from understanding how racism is rooted in American culture and ourselves to where we can work on becoming anti-racist ourselves where we can impact policies and culture on a larger scale

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Oct 14, 2020

Rather than a how-to book, there is a tremendous amount regarding the Kendi's personal history and journey toward becoming an antiracist. I found this to be a bit distracting. That said, the book still has plenty of value and is worth reading in addition to many other books about race.

Sep 28, 2020

American University professor and Black activist Ibram Kendi packs three unique books inside this popular book: an academic study of racism, a personal memoir about growing up Black, and a cultural history of "White on Black" racism in the United States. Unfortunately, the academic side of this book is poorly constructed. Kendi frequently introduces self-contradictory ideas, leaps to dramatic conclusions without supplying sufficient evidence, and fails to examine racism from more than one cultural viewpoint. On the other hand, Kendi's personal memoir about Black culture in the United States is engaging and honestly told. Finally, Kendi's history of African American racism is accurate, well-cited, and very interesting. No matter which of these three topics Kendi is addressing, his writing style is excellent, making this book a great pleasure to read. It is clear that Kendi is very passionate about his subject matter! My greatest disappointment was that Kendi approaches the topic of racism almost entirely from a narrow "White on Black" perspective within the United States rather than considering global racism or examining racism amongst different cultural groups.

Sep 25, 2020

Mustang - I can tell by your comment you are one of those low IQ bible/trump humping hate-filled evangelicals. Why don't you ask yourself why you have to lie in your comments? Did baby jebus tell you to? You should be ashamed and repent for your lies and stupidity. The majority of white rioters were actually trump humping white supremacists.

". . . Some of the 40 arrests made in the Twin Cities Friday night were of people linked to white supremacist groups and organized crime."

Sep 25, 2020

Black Lives Matter, LLC. couldn't care less about the lives of black's, they mean nothing to them. Expect as tools they can use to burn and wreck things with the aim of gaining power for the very few at the top controlling Antifa/BLM. Other than that, actual blacks' lives are pretty much discardable fodder to BLM.
In Minneapolis it's really quit remarkable that the majority of those doing the smashing and burning of minority owned businesses were actually white Liberals....

Jul 09, 2020

A moving, powerful book that combines a precise theory of racism and antiracism with Mr. Kendi's personal life and evolution. Written with urgency and passion, the books peels the many layers of racist policies, ideas, and behaviors and how those make their ways into our lives.

Jun 28, 2020

I was expecting to read this book in Jan but it took a long time to become available. Reading it now couldn't be more timely. I really enjoyed the personal info Kendi intertwined w/ all the terms and factual information. This really is an excellent primer on how to be an Antiracist. Kendi grew up learning all the info he offers up. Could/should be considered required reading for everyone, has the potential to make our world more equal. It's not enough to be an antiracist individual. We all have to work to change the power, rules, laws that result in racism. That is the challenge.

STPL_JessH May 08, 2020

How to Be an Antiracist is outstanding. I believe it to be required reading for any discussion of racism and white supremacy.
This book is incredibly authentic. There are the requisite facts and figures, and then there are the feelings that Kendi is not afraid to share. He is careful and considerate in the way he approaches each and every type of racist and segregationist policy, practice, and notion he confronts. He is brave and vulnerable enough to share his own past thoughts and experiences with societal conditioning. He does not shy away from confronting people and institutions that are perpetuating racism; nor does he let anyone off the hook. Kendi writes that being antiracist is something that we have to continue to do; it is not an identity that we arrive at or something that we achieve in a single moment. I really appreciate the forward motion of the book even as Kendi draws on successes and failures in the past. This is one book in a long line of excellent works that demonstrate how to be antiracist. I highly, highly recommend this book. 

Dec 08, 2019

Mr. Kendi previously wrote Stamped From the Beginning: The Definitive History of Racist Ideas in America. While Stamped From the Beginning is long and comprehensive, How to Be an Antiracist is short and powerful. It could indeed be a textbook for a course in How to Be an Antiracist, and it is a very helpful resource for any individuals who want to understand what racism is and how to change it.

How to Be an Antiracist is also a personal story of the author’s journey and the evolution of his understanding about what racism is and what it is not. Readers of Stamped From the Beginning will recognize some of the lessons the author explained in that book. He does not flinch from criticizing his own earlier understandings (many of which were unknowingly racist), and it is clear that his own understanding of racism, and how to be an antiracist, is continuing to evolve.

Here is one insight that resonated with me:

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.

Mr. Kendi notes, “There is no such thing as a nonracist or race-neutral policy. Every policy in every institution in every nation is either producing or sustaining either racial inequity or equity between racial groups.”

ACL_ChrisS Nov 19, 2019

An intellectual history of racism coupled with Kendi's personal evolution on the topic. The book is a great way to learn more about racism and stretch your understanding about racism as a power construct. I wish he would have offered more on specific policies that should be addressed.

Tigard_HollyCP Oct 19, 2019

You are either racist, or antiracist. If you say you are “not racist,” then you are probably actually racist. But the good news is, those labels are not fixed. It’s not actually a person who is racist or antiracist, but acts themselves. The way to be antiracist is to strive to change racist policies. If your acts are misogynistic, homophobic, classist, etc., then you cannot possibly be antiracist. You may only be considered antiracist if you are doing something about racist (sexist, homophobic, classist, etc) policies. JUST talking about racism is still considered racist. Doing something about it (specifically, changing racist policy), is antiracist. Ibram X. Kendi himself recognizes all of his own past racist, misogynistic, homophobic and classist acts and acknowledges that he is still not immune to them. One person can perform both racist and antiracist acts.

This is definitely a hard-hitting book and at first I was a bit put off by his very black and white, if you will, classification of racist vs. antiracist. But I think he makes his point that we all make choices regarding further advancing a racist system, or changing it. It did feel to me like he conflated gay and trans a bit, but at least he did address the issues of other marginalized groups than race and the intersectionality of marginalization.

It is a very important book, and I think everyone should be introduced to the ideas in it. The text itself is quite dense. I hope there will be a Young Reader’s Edition; that would probably be more my speed.

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