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Once in a great while a book comes along that changes the way we see the world and helps to fuel a nationwide social movement. The New Jim Crow is such a book. Praised by Harvard Law professor Lani Guinier as "brave and bold," this book directly challenges the notion that the election of Barack Obama signals a new era of colorblindness. With dazzling candor, legal scholar Michelle Alexander argues that "we have not ended racial caste in America; we have merely redesigned it." By targeting black men through the War on Drugs and decimating communities of color, the U.S. criminal justice system functions as a contemporary system of racial control--relegating millions to a permanent second-class status--even as it formally adheres to the principle of colorblindness. In the words of Benjamin Todd Jealous, president and CEO of the NAACP, this book is a "call to action.<P><P> Chosen for Mark Zuckerberg's "A Year of Books"
The Obama presidency represents a major milestone in black history and the struggle for political, economic and cultural equality in the United States. But how--if at all--has the first black presidency helped move things forward for people of color? Has it delivered the "change we can believe in" and "deepening of democracy" that communities of color organized around? How has the reality and image of a black First Family impacted American culture? What lessons from past struggles can be applied to this unique historical moment to advance multicultural democracy in the U.S.?Starting the exploration of these questions with the voices of past civil rights and black power activists held in the historic Pacifica Radio Archives, BBC journalist Joanne Griffith traveled the country to interview black intellectuals, leaders and activists.The result is a rich and wide-ranging exploration of the hot-button issues facing African Americans today, from religion, law amd media to education and the economy, to the ever-shifting meaning of Obama's contribution and impact. Both timely and rich in personal wisdom, Redefining Black Power connects the dots between past civil rights struggles and the future of black civic and cultural life in the United States.Featuring Van Jones, Michelle Alexander, Julianne Malveaux, Vincent Harding, Ramona Africa, Esther Armah and Linn Washington Jr.Foreword by Pacifica Radio Archives director Brian DeShazor.Praise for Joanne Griffith:"Joanne Griffith is a superb journalist! She writes, speaks, and interviews with great skill, sincerity, and sensitivity to those she covers. Joanne has made it in a tough journalism world -- one where the white males, working for wealthy news organizations, have the advantages. Her writings and insights are a lesson to all. She reflects President Obama's spirited call of 'fired up, ready to go!'"--Connie Lawn, Senior White House Correspondent (since 1968)
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