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Racism, Antiracism, and You

Book - 2020
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"A history of racist and antiracist ideas in America, from their roots in Europe until today, adapted from the National Book Award winner Stamped from the Beginning"--Provided by publisher.
Publisher: New York : Little, Brown and Company, 2020
Edition: First edition
ISBN: 9780316453691
Characteristics: xvi, 294 pages ; 22 cm
Additional Contributors: Kendi, Ibram X. - Author


From Library Staff

Please listen to the audiobook, cause Jason Reynolds reads it, and is fantastic, like always. Racist history in America runs deep, and this book provides an in-depth understanding while also starting the work of being anti-racist.

A history of racist and antiracist ideas in America, from their roots in Europe until today, adapted from the National Book Award winner Stamped from the Beginning.

A history of racist and antiracist ideas in America, from their roots in Europe until today, adapted from the National Book Award winner Stamped from the Beginning.

A history of racist and antiracist ideas in America, from their roots in Europe until today, adapted from the National Book Award winner Stamped from the Beginning.

Various formats. A re-imagined version of Kendi's 2016 title featuring thoughtful narrative added by Jason Reynolds.

From the critics

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Apr 27, 2021

I know the authors start the book by adamantly stating it's NOT a history book, but in my opinion it is, and a much needed one, at that.

Yes, it touches on a very raw topic for our country -- racism. But if you're willing to examine that topic in your home or classroom, and how racism has played out over our country's history, it's an excellent book. Furthermore, the authors do possibly the best job I've seen in a long, long time in a non-fiction text of scaffolding, or building students' prior knowledge, as the reading progresses, so your readers will feel they have a basis, a grounding, for evaluating other texts they're asked to read, evaluate and analyze after this one.

I do believe after reading this book, readers will be able to better identify the biases inherent in seemingly unbiased texts in ways they probably hadn't thought of before reading. And they'll be better prepared to be antiracist forces in our society, which we very much need.

Mar 16, 2021

I tried Stamped from the Beginning first. Unfortunately, it had a melatonin effect on me. I ended up falling asleep after a few pages. By contrast, my 12-year-old son, who picked up Stamped, finished reading in 2 days and claimed that this was a wide-eye-opening experience. So I ditched the grown-up version and picked up Stamped, and boy, I was amazed how much I didn't know (and also how easy to read). I know Stamped is a chewed-up version of the original but for someone like myself who was not very familiar to this side of American history, it was an excellent primer. I have to pick up the original version someday.... I hope this book will be used in schools all across America.

IndyPL_TammieB Mar 12, 2021

This book takes a long history full of information, and turns it into “not a history book” with his conversational style.” Told impressively economically, loaded with historical details that connect clearly to current experiences, and bolstered with suggested reading and listening selected specifically for young readers, Kendi and Reynolds's volume is essential, meaningfully accessible reading.”

Gina_Vee Dec 21, 2020

I don't know which one I like better: Stamped or Stamped From the Beginning.

Dec 21, 2020

Kendi is a better writer than this, but for those who don't want a more serious treatment. I usually don't mind books labelled "teen," but this was a bit overly teen-y for an old person. Still interesting and helpful, though.

Nov 30, 2020

Assimilationism (Coward) ? Segregationist (Hater)? AntiRacist (Someone who truly loves)? These are the categories presented. I don't see that the solution is so apparent, especially as former President Barack Obama is classed as an "assimilationist." Just finished Free Thinker about Helen Hamilton Gardner and she is not easily classified because she did not "publicly" champion the rights of African-American women in her quest for equality and the right to vote. There are no clear heroes or villains. We all know that too many things are unequal - power, gender, skin color/race, language/culture, religious beliefs and sexuality. This book gives an overview of the many ways race has been used to perpetuate inequity, but as individuals, like Helen Hamilton Gardner, do your best with your talents and change happens.

Nov 17, 2020

"This is not a history book. I repeat, this is not a history book. At least not like the ones you're used to reading in school."

These lines, the first in the very first chapter of this book, really struck me when I read them, and they stayed with me as I continued reading. Because Jason Reynolds is right. This is not like the history books I read in school (or since). That made it no less compelling and thought-provoking. As a kid growing up in a Midwestern state, I can recall being taught about the typical benchmarks of the United States' racial history - the Antebellum Period (which, as I remember it was basically EVERYTHING from before the Civil War - can't remember it being broken down any further than that), the Civil War (including the Emancipation Proclamation), Reconstruction, Jim Crow, and the Civil Rights movement of the 1960s. But as I remember it, that's where the lesson seemed to stop, and it seemed to me that the overall message there was that the problems of racism stopped there. It felt like the teacher was saying, "Look at how foolish our ancestors were, to look down on and persecute people based on the color of their skin, but no worries because Dr. King took care of things and it's not like that now."

That, as I remember it, was the lesson taught to a white girl growing up and going to school in the 1990s. The lessons that girl learned afterward though, in the school that is Real Life, have long showed it for the lie that it was. And after reading this book, this adaptation of Dr. Kendi's 'Stamped from the Beginning: The Definitive History of Racist Ideas in America', I can say without reservation that this book needs to be in classrooms right now. Here we have the history of racism, from its beginnings via a bunch of people we'd never heard of before, through many people that we are (at the very least) somewhat familiar with, and to events that have occurred within, if not the lifetime of current students, then in the lifetime of their parents or slightly older family members. Here is the history, in a 'not a history book', written specifically to draw the interest of young people (and thus the polar opposite of so many of the history books that have apparently so turned young people off of the subject entirely).

I've read this once, and I feel like I need to read it again, just to take it all in fully. Definitely one of those books that I'm going to be drawn back to again and again, and taking away something new each time.

HKK_Teen_Staff Aug 27, 2020

Reynolds presents the history of racism and racist thought in a very accessible, easily understood way with contemporary language. Recommended for teens and adults alike!

JCLHeatherM Aug 21, 2020

Promoted as 'not a history book', this nonfiction piece is full of information, factoids, and side notes that were glossed over or simply not covered during history class in school. Reynolds doesn't shy away from past history, uncovering the deeds of many world leaders and how their actions may still impact our world today.

IndyPL_ShannonO Aug 05, 2020

A great, approachable book on the history of racism and antiracist activism in the United States. Jason Reynolds does a great job summarizing and adapting Ibram X. Kendi's book for a younger audience. He succinctly defined key terms and broke down complex ideas that middle grade and teenagers could easily understand. The tone of the book is conversational and engaging, allowing teens to feel like they aren't just reading another history textbook. A great book to add to any library YA or middle grade display on antiracism!

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IndyPL_TammieB Mar 12, 2021

“This is NOT a history book.
This is a book about the here and now.
A book to help us better understand why we are where we are.
A book about race.”

Nov 17, 2020

"This is not a history book. I repeat, this is not a history book. At least not like the ones you're used to reading in school."

JCLChrisK Jun 16, 2020

I almost don't want to tell you what happened because I've told you what happened a lot already. But if you were to guess that White people started to perpetuate lies about Black people being inferior to keep the world of racism spinning, you'd be right.


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IndyPL_TammieB Mar 12, 2021

IndyPL_TammieB thinks this title is suitable for 12 years and over


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IndyPL_TammieB Mar 12, 2021

In this book, Jason Reynolds takes Ibram X. Kendi’s classic, Stamped from the Beginning, and adapts it for young adult readers. Reynolds goes back to 1415 and follows the use of race as a construct to gain and keep power throughout history. He explores the events, influential figures and movements that have propagated racist ideas. Reynolds distinguished between racism, segregationism, assimilationism, and antiracism. The common narrative of US History if challenged and the full story is told.


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