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Stamped from the Beginning: The Definitive History of Racist Ideas in America (National Book Award Winner) Hardcover – April 12, 2016
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From the Publisher
—The Washington Post
"Kendi has done something that's damn near impossible: write a book about racism that breaks new ground, while being written in a way that's accessible to the nonacademic. If you've ever been interested in how racist ideas spread throughout the United States, this is the book to read."
Stamped from the Beginning is "ambitious, well-researched and worth the time of anyone who wants to understand racism."
—The Seattle Times
"Kendi admits that he is not writing to change the minds of those who produce and espouse racist ideas. Rather, in his honesty about how deeply he himself had held multiple racist ideas before embarking on the historical odyssey of this book, he gives the reader permission to accompany him on that eye-opening journey...Kendi leaves plenty of room for self-questioning, and for drawing connections between the racist apologetics of the past and those of the present. The process makes for a compelling, thoroughly enlightening, unsettling, and necessary read."
“An altogether remarkable thesis on history, but, in ways that are both moving and immediately painful, it also reverberates with the post-election autopsy we're all conducting right now… Stamped from the Beginning is a riveting (and often rivetingly written) work, well deserving of the National Book Award.”
"To structure his book, which he spent three years writing, Kendi built it around five major American intellectual figures: Puritan leader Cotton Mather, founding father Thomas Jefferson, abolitionist William Lloyd Garrison, African-American scholar W.E.B. Du Bois and activist Angela Davis. While showing the reader each of them grappling with questions of race, Kendi places them in the wider context of history with graceful, engaging prose and deeply researched details. Stamped is a book that connects everything from Mather's 17th century theological theories about the souls of Africans to Bo Derek's cornrows in the movie 10, and much more."
—Tampa Bay Times
Stamped from the Beginning provides "ever-relevant context for the white supremacist moment."
—The Dallas Morning News
"Ibram Kendi is an important new voice in African American intellectual and social history. This book, an intellectual history of racist ideas, promises to break important new ground for scholarly and general audiences interested in the construction of racism in America."
—Peniel E. Joseph, author of Stokely: A Life and Waiting 'Til the Midnight Hour
"Both a penetrating treatise and a wonderfully accessible work of intellectual history, Stamped from the Beginning reveals the heritage of ideas behind the modern dialectic of race-denial and race-obsession. By historicizing our entrenched logic of racial difference, Kendi shows why "I don't see color" and other professions of post-racialism remain inexorable alibis for white supremacy. Stamped from the Beginning has done the cause of anti-racism a great service."
—Russell Rickford, Associate Professor, Cornell University, and author of We Are an African People: Independent Education, Black Power, and the Radical Imagination
"Richly sourced and engaging, Ibram X. Kendi's Stamped from the Beginning is a highly accessible yet provocative study that seeks to complicate our understanding of racist ideas and the forces that produce them."
—Yohuru Williams, Professor of History and Dean of the College of Arts and Sciences, Fairfield University
"In this tour de force, Kendi explores the history of racist ideas—and their connection with racist practices—across American history. Racism is the enduring scar on the American consciousness. In this ambitious, magisterial book, Kendi reveals just how deep that scar cuts and why it endures, its barely subcutaneous pain still able to flare."
—Kirkus (starred review)
"In his ambitious, illuminating, and engaging book, Ibram X. Kendi seamlessly assembles sources from Cotton Mather to Angela Davis; the Great Awakening to Black Lives Matter; the Birth of a Nation to Hip Hop culture, to show how not only race but racist ideas are at the center of American thought."
—Paula J. Giddings, EA Woodson Professor, Smith College, and author of Ida: A Sword Among Lions: Ida B. Wells and the Campaign Against Lynching
"This heavily researched yet easily readable volume explores the roots and the effects of racism in America. The narrative smoothly weaves throughout history, culminating in the declaration that as much as we'd like it to be, America today is nowhere near the "postracial" country that the media declared following the election of Barack Obama in 2008. The hope here is that by studying and remembering the lessons of history, we may be able to move forward to an equitable society."
"Stamped from the Beginning is a history of how racist ideas are built, and how they are built to last. Understanding this history is essential if we want to have any hope of progress. This book will forever change the way we think about race."
—Touré, MSNBC contributor and author of Who's Afraid of Post-Blackness
"Kendi's provocative egalitarian argument combines prodigious reading and research with keen insights into the manipulative power of racist ideologies that suppress the recognition of diversity. This is a must for serious readers of American history, politics, or social thought."
"Stamped from the Beginning delivers a timely and bold corrective to the history of racist and anti-racist ideas that explodes our understanding of the root of anti-black violence as we know it today. Kendi's deft analysis of key thinkers from Cotton Mather to Angela Davis illustrates how racial thought, specifically debates about racial difference, take shape across space and time and influence racial policies and the persistence of racial discrimination. This book is a must read for those interested in working to unearth the foundational ideas and practices that hinder true racial progress."
—Keisha-Khan Y. Perry, Associate Professor, Brown University, and author of Black Women against the Land Grab: The Fight for Racial Justice in Brazil
"Kendi upends many commonly held beliefs about how racism works, exploring the ideas and thinkers behind our most intractable social and cultural problem."
—The Boston Globe
“A deep (and often disturbing) chronicling of how anti-black thinking has entrenched itself in the fabric of American society.”
“A staggering intellectual history of racism in America that is both rigorous and …readable.”
“An intricate look at the history of race in the U.S., arguing that many well-meaning American progressives inadvertently operate on belief systems tinged with a racist heritage.”
“Self-proclaimed as a definitive history of racist ideas in the US, this exhaustive, encyclopedic opus lives up to that claim. Kendi's mighty tome is breathtaking in its scope…. Both worthwhile and extraordinary…. Essential.”
"Racial tensions have seemingly increased over the past year, making Kendi’s Stamped from the Beginning essential reading. The book points to the roots of the problem, offering lessons on digging them up."
“By showing how deeply entrenched racist ideas have been — and still are — in America, and thus exposing clearly and discrediting these ideas, Kendi has created not only a great work of scholarship but a much-needed tool.”
“I honestly wish every American would read this book, especially people who haven’t been exposed to the history of blatant, transparent racism in our public policy.”
—Chicago Review of Books
“A work as prodigious as the subtitle implies…. Had Kendi only provided history, Stamped from the Beginning would be a meaningful contribution to the literature, but it is so much more. It a call for all Americans to look inward.”
—Albany Times Union"
Given our political moment and the work we need to do as individuals and as a country, this book should be on every young leader's bookshelf. It’s not pretty, but the truth often isn’t."
- Publisher : Bold Type Books; First Edition/First Printing (April 12, 2016)
- Language : English
- Hardcover : 592 pages
- ISBN-10 : 1568584636
- ISBN-13 : 978-1568584638
- Item Weight : 1.91 pounds
- Dimensions : 6.45 x 2.15 x 9.55 inches
- Best Sellers Rank: #45,999 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
- Customer Reviews:
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In the same vein, Kendi notes that blacks are more likely than whites to die of prostate cancer and breast cancer, but he does not include the fact that blacks are less likely than whites to die of esophageal cancer, lung cancer, skin cancer, ovarian cancer, bladder cancer, brain cancer, non-Hodgkin’s lymphoma, and leukemia.
By selectively citing data that show blacks suffering more than whites, Kendi turns what should be a unifying, race-neutral battle ground––namely, humanity’s fight against deadly diseases––into another proxy battle in the War on Racism.
The entire book is filled with this kind of imaginary stuff. Unfortunately, It would require 5 whole books to debunk all the errors in this publication. - This book was nothing but a rushed political propaganda published in an election year (2016). Unfortunately it did not work and it will work even less in 2020 as Trump has unprecedented black support for a republican candidate.
Rocky, are a racist reflection of white America. He argues that 1968, the year Planet came out, Lyndon Johnson's State of the Union address called for law and order against the riots and protests, there were fears that a "violent black revolution could be on the horizon (p. 400). That may have been well and true. However, on the following page (p. 401), Kendi projects his own biased assumptions about the film by arguing that it was somehow a reflection of the white collective subconsciousness's view of black people as apes. However, it doesn't appear that he's ever seen the film or took the time to learn the film's message. He wrote, "When White astronauts land on a planet after a 2,000 year journey, apes enslave them" (Kendi, 2016, p. 401). Well, for starters the astronauts weren't all white. One was black! When actor Charlton Heston realizes he is on Earth upon discovering the Statue of Liberty partly buried on a sandy beach, he says the now famous line, "You blew it up, you basterds!" He says this because HUMAN civilization ended after a nuclear war, which was also a fear at that time. Kendi also made no reference to his interpretation of the film. He only commented, "Planet if the Apes took the place of Tarzan in racist popular culture." On page 422, Kendi wrote about Rocky, "Rocky's opponent, Apollo Creed, with his amazing avalanche of punches, symbolized the rising black middle class, and the real life heavyweight champion of the world in 1976, the pride of Black Power masculinity, Muhammad Ali. Rocky Balboa-as played by Sylvester Stallone-came to symbolize the pride of White supremacy's refusal to be knocked out of the avalanche of civil rights and Black Power protests and policies." Rocky is merely an American underdog story that Stallone wrote, based off of the 1975 heavyweight boxing match between Muhammad Ali and Chuck Wepner. A match that the white boxer nearly beat the World Champion. Like Planet of the Apes, the film was used by Kendi as well as his reference as a sort of rorschach test to project their own biases about the films being racist. If Kendi chooses to interpret both films in his spare time as reflections of collective white unconscious racism, that's fine and dandy. However, when I find these speculations in a book being touted as an achievement of black scholarship, I have to question what other liberties Kendi took with the truth in his book.
Top reviews from other countries
The book was highly praised and recommended by people I trust. It did not disappoint. The book does a wonderful job of laying out the cyclical nature of civil rights progress and backlash. In many ways, what we are experiencing now, after 8 years of a black man in The White House, was inevitable. This author lays out the pattern that seems to be inescapable.
If you are interested in understanding more about why the pendulum seems to have swung so far the other way, I recommend this book.
Der selbst afroamerikanische Hochschullehrer sieht die US-Geschichte einmal konsequent aus der Perspektive des Rassismus. Das ist nicht die gewohnte Betrachtungsweise - Schwarze, ihre Versklavung bzw. Diskrimierung werden meist sonst nur kurz angetippt - und dadurch aufschlussreich.
Mit dem Finger auf "die da" in den USA zu weisen, wäre aber falsch - "Stamped from the beginning" sensibilisiert eher für den täglichen abstempelnden Rassismus hier wie dort. Und gegen andere Diskriminierungen aufgrund von Geschlecht, Orientierung, Geld, Herkunft, ... Kendis aufmerksame Hinweise auf Rassismus damals wie heute lassen sich nämlich so übertragen.
Kendi verwehrt sich dabei gegen "Segregationismus" (getrennte Entwicklung), aber auch gegen einen Assimilations-Rassismus, dass Schwarze sich einfach nur angleichen müssten/sollten. Seine "antirassistischen" Vorbilder sind die aufbegehrenden Angela Davis und De Bois, und auch deren Irrwege stellt Kendi mit dar.
Gute viereinhalb Sterne.