Enter your mobile number or email address below and we'll send you a link to download the free Kindle App. Then you can start reading Kindle books on your smartphone, tablet, or computer - no Kindle device required.
To get the free app, enter your mobile phone number.
Other Sellers on Amazon
+ $3.99 shipping
Impolite Conversations: On Race, Politics, Sex, Money, and Religion Hardcover – September 30, 2014
The Amazon Book Review
Author interviews, book reviews, editors picks, and more. Read it now
Frequently bought together
Customers who bought this item also bought
“Provocative . . . . refreshing insights on taboo topics.” (ESSENCE)
“ Lively discussion from two keen observers.” (Kirkus)
“Intelligent and thought-provoking.” (Publishers Weekly) --This text refers to the Paperback edition.
About the Author
Cora Daniels is an award-winning journalist and the author of two books, Black Power Inc. and Ghettonation. She was a staff writer for Fortune magazine for almost a decade and currently is a contributing writer for Essence. Her work has also been published in The New York Times Magazine, Fast Company magazine, O: The Oprah Magazine, and Men’s Fitness, among others.
John L. Jackson Jr. is a cultural anthropologist, filmmaker, and writer. At the age of thirty-four, he was named the first-ever Richard Perry University Professor of Communication and Anthropology at the University of Pennsylvania, and has served as a visiting professor of law at Harvard. He is the author of four books: Harlemworld, a Publisher’s Weekly Notable Nonfiction Book; Real Black; Racial Paranoia; and Thin Description.
Browse award-winning titles. See more
If you are a seller for this product, would you like to suggest updates through seller support?
Top Customer Reviews
The book is broken down into 5 areas (see subtitle) and the co-authors each write essays on these five different subjects. The essays are not presented in a debate format, though arguably that may have made for a slightly better book, but in that format you run the risk of the reader just choosing sides. So, I'm not quibbling with the ultimate end product, just thinking out loud. As they say in the introduction about the style choice, "...we feel it more mirrors a natural conversation. The kind of conversation that meanders, stops, starts, gets you angry, sad, and makes you laugh."
That goal was pretty much accomplished, some essays definitely provoke humor, a few of John's going over the top. Some will bring about an urge to join the conversation and so that is really what makes this book work. If you find yourself nodding in agreement or shaking your head in disagreement, that's a definite win for the authors. At the very least, it will make you examine your own friendships, and examine the strength or relative weakness of them. Can you openly talk to your friends about these five taboo topics? Can you do so passionately and remain great friends? Do you even know how certain people in your circle feel about the 5 taboos? A book like this can be a blueprint to help jumpstart those conversations.
So John and Cora have similar thoughts on some of these taboos, but the way in which they are presented gives you a look from different angles. There are some essays I'm sure readers will find controversial, like Cora's "Let's pray for sexually active daughters" but both authors do a good job of laying out the why of their opinions. I think the Race section was the strongest and it's no surprise that it contains the most essays. Some interesting and debatable thoughts come out of the Race area. This collection of essays would make for a great bookclub discussion, just make sure everyone checks their sensitivities at the door. 3.5 stars
Let's start with the first misleading claim: that it's a no-holds-barred harangue on social issues. It's not. This book lacks the raunchy risk-taking that it needs to stand out, especially in the age of internet comment boards where you find the real honest discourse (racism, sexism, et. al. abound). Rather, this book is a dry collection of academic essays that break down such "riveting" topics as government funded child care, black female identity, and income inequality. There's nothing impolite about a book that rationally discusses multi-faceted socio-economic issues, citing one study per paragraph. I have HuffPo for that, and the essays are a lot shorter and more informed.
The second misleading claim is that this book is about five topics: race, politics, sex, money and religion. It's mostly about one: race. To get a sense of what these authors (both African American) are really interested in, you needn't look further than the table of contents which has 114 pages devoted to the topic of race, and 102 pages devoted to sex, money, and religion combined (!). I think the publishers knew if this book was just another incursion into the crowded race debate in this country, it would get lost in the fray, so they commissioned other topics - a task which the authors hardly fulfilled. Make no mistake: this book is almost all about race. The essays about sex are about hypermasculinity of black men, and the plight of the black woman; the money essays are about racial inequality... you get the point.
People are 'keeping it real' a lot more on Twitter. Save your time and read them instead.