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Negropedia: The Assimilated Negro's Crash Course on the Modern Black Experience Paperback – October 4, 2011

3.8 out of 5 stars 30 customer reviews

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The Underground Railroad
The latest book club pick from Oprah
"The Underground Railroad" by Colson Whitehead is a magnificent tour de force chronicling a young slave's adventures as she makes a desperate bid for freedom in the antebellum South. See more
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Editorial Reviews

Review

“This definitely supplants that weird book my grandpa gave me from the ’30s as the best guide to black people I’ve ever read.”
Christian Lander, author of Stuff White People Like and Whiter Shades of Pale
 
“I feel like I became closer to the Lord by reading this book.
This book is to black life what the basketball is to a game of basketball.
Read my quote. Be influenced. Buy this book.”
Hannibal Buress, writer (30 Rock, Saturday Night Live) and comedian (My name is Hannibal.)

Negropedia is a humorous collection of essays.” – Jason Parham, NewYorker.com

“A group of hilarious vignettes ” – Flavorwire.com

About the Author

PATRICE EVANS, aka The Assimilated Negro (TAN), is a contributing writer for Grantland.com. He has written about the intersection of race, class, and pop culture for Time Out New York, Gawker.com, McSweeney’s, and CollegeHumor.com, as well as What Was the Hipster?, an essay collection published by the literary journal n+1. In addition to writing for print and online, he also writes rhymes and stand-up bits for fun and profit. He lives in New York City.
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The latest book club pick from Oprah
"The Underground Railroad" by Colson Whitehead is a magnificent novel chronicling a young slave's adventures as she makes a desperate bid for freedom in the antebellum South. See more

Product Details

  • Paperback: 240 pages
  • Publisher: Three Rivers Press; Original edition (October 4, 2011)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 030746380X
  • ISBN-13: 978-0307463807
  • Product Dimensions: 5.2 x 0.6 x 8 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 4.8 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 3.8 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (30 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #936,974 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

By Zoeeagleeye VINE VOICE on September 5, 2011
Format: Paperback Vine Customer Review of Free Product ( What's this? )
Lotsa people, esp black people are gonna love this book. I sorta liked "Negropedia" by Patrice Evans. I smiled at the pokes and admired the cleverness. But its glib and get-down tone began to grate on me after awhile. Of course, none of my friends use that sort of language, ahem. At least, not my black friends, although a white friend or two has been known to let loose with a "That's a FINE lookin' booty" after a few beers.

Small doses as in a column or blog, would be okay, but a whole book of "Black comics somehow always want to project the vibe that they can lay the pipe." And, "So give them some dap if you're lucky enough to see them." Or, "if Maya Angelou and Heidi Montag are the last two women on earth, I may feel a little conflicted." -- too much glitter; too many balloons.

It's laughs, yucks, jokes, quips and prodigious wittyness in every line. But it's also, in two words, race-specific. Therefore, Black people will find it hilarious most of the time, whereas many White people will scratch their long silky hair, clear their Perrier lavished throats and wonder what "Seinfeld-a** ni**as" means.

Evans' takes on Claire Huxtable (in her own lucious bubble) and Erykah Badu (whee-hoo!); on "The Four Horsemen of the Postracial Apocalypse" (and all its valor and slips); and on black comics doing white schtick are funny and right on the money. Honey. And that's the problemo, see? He's got me writing that way, too! It's catching. Only, of course, he does it waaaaay a whole lot betta baby! And now I'm channeling Mike Myers! And that's the main point. What is Evans' real voice? What does he sound like when he speaks to his mother?

Okay, you may ask, as Pink sings, "Why so serious?" You'd be right.
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I loved this book! It's a lighthearted, humorous collection of peeks into the contemporary black experience in America. There are several parts that I found "laugh out loud" funny. It takes the edge off of things that we sometimes take way too seriously, and gives an interesting perspective on some things that perhaps we don't think enough about. For most of us who are mired in the day-to-day challenges that we've come to expect and take for granted, Negropedia will put a smile on our faces and maybe raise our consciousness a little bit. I highly recommend it.
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Format: Paperback Vine Customer Review of Free Product ( What's this? )
Patrice Evans is a blogger known as The Assimilated Negro (TAN). His book, mostly derived from the blog, takes the form of a guide to the Black world intended for Blacks who have assimilated into the white world and thus forgotten everything they should know. Under that guise, he's produced a mostly-funny tour of the Black experience, mainly the stereotypes mixed in with some real insight. Never mind that lots of comedians have done more compact takes contrasting the Black and White worlds.

He riffs on all kinds of things, from "ghetto pass" tourguide descriptions of ghetto institutions (those Chinese joints that serve wings,sidewalk entrerpreneurs, etc) to clothes and sports and movies and big booty and big otherthings, African-American studies programs (a taxonomy of African-American-Studies know it alls), gentrification through chain stores, Obama - especially the fist bump, Claire Huxtable vs Michelle Obama and so on and so on.

He's probably best at lists, but some of his set-piece descriptions of cultural figures like the Bougie Black Beauty Bohemian are spot on, clever, insightful, and funny.

Like anything derived from a blog the book is uneven. And he talks about some things that should make everybody uncomfortable. Luckily for him (and us) you can get away with a lot in satire.

Don't buy this if you can't take a joke, including jokes about some of your sacred cows.
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The gimmick is funny at first: "Black folks have become so assimilated, we gotta teach them --and everyone else who wants some street cred -- how to be black. But the book is way too long to sustain the joke. The joke gets beat to death and it becomes a bore.
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Format: Paperback Vine Customer Review of Free Product ( What's this? )
You remember that Seinfeld episode about race where George kept asking Should we be talking about this? That is kind of what reading Negropedia is like. It is a great book but you may feel uncomfortable because it discusses race and we in a "postracial" society, don't do that often.

Still this is a great book.

Once I started reading Negropedia I could not stop and it made me laugh out loud several times, which is something I rarely do while reading.

Patrice Evans is a blogger known as TAN. It is an acronym for The Assimilated Negro, ie a Black person who attempts to fit in with white society. Negropedia attempts to explain the differences between black and white people, with a focus on black neighborhoods and white neighborhoods. This is something that has been done to death by Eddie Murphy and Chris Rock and yet Evans puts a fresh spin on it. My favorite section of the book is the Ghetto Pass on which Evans explains gypsy cabs and fried chicken places. Of course the book bathes in stereotypes and that will make it controversial but Evans does it so tongue in cheek you don't take him seriously.

Not all the sections are funny, but what works really works. This is going to be a big deal when it comes out in October; mark my words.
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