Between the World and Me
In the 150 years since the end of the Civil War and the ratification of the Thirteenth Amendment, the story of race and America has remained a brutally simple one, written on flesh: it is the story of the black body, exploited to create the country's foundational wealth, violently segregated to unite a nation after a civil war, and, today, still disproportionately threatened, locked up and killed in the streets. What is it like to inhabit a black body and find a way to live within it? And how can America reckon with its fraught racial history? Between the World and Me is Ta-Nehisi Coates' attempt to answer those questions, presented in the form of a letter to his adolescent son. Coates shares with his son-and readers-the story of his own awakening to the truth about history and race through a series of revelatory experiences: immersion in nationalist mythology as a child; engagement with history, poetry and love at Howard University; travels to Civil War battlefields and the South Side of Chicago; a journey to France that reorients his sense of the world; and pilgrimages to the homes of mothers whose children's lives have been taken as American plunder. Taken together, these stories map a winding path towards a kind of liberation-a journey from fear and confusion, to a full and honest understanding of the world as it is. Masterfully woven from lyrical personal narrative, reimagined history, and fresh, emotionally charged reportage, Between the World and Me offers a powerful new framework for understanding America's history and current crisis, and a transcendent vision for a way forward.
* Extract to be sought in high-profile magazine such as the Monthly * Author interviews on TV programs such as ABC News Breakfast * Author interviews on national radio programs such as ABC News PM and ABC Radio National Late Night Live * Widespread review coverage in national broadsheet and tabloid newspapers such as the Sydney Morning Herald, Age and Australian * Widespread review coverage on news sites such as the Guardian, New Daily and Junkee * Advertisements in literary and current affairs publications such as ABR, Griffith Review and the Monthly, and on their associated websites * Reading copies available to the trade * Budget for bookseller catalogues * Banner advertising on bookseller websites
Winner of PEN/Spielvogel-Diamonstein Award for the Art of the Essay 2016 and US National Book Award for Non-Fiction 2015. Shortlisted for Dayton Literary Peace Prize: Non-Fiction 2016 and National Book Critics Circle Awards: Criticism 2015.
'The powerful story of a father's past and a son's future. Coates offers this eloquent memoir as a letter to his teenage son, bearing witness to his own experiences and conveying passionate hopes for his son's life...this moving, potent testament might have been titled Black Lives Matter.' Kirkus Reviews (starred) 'I've been wondering who might fill the intellectual void that plagued me after James Baldwin died. Clearly it is Ta-Nehisi Coates. The language of Between the World and Me, like Coates' journey, is visceral, eloquent and beautifully redemptive. And its examination of the hazards and hopes of black male life is as profound as it is revelatory. This is required reading.' -- Toni Morrison 'I just finished an advance copy of Between the World and Me, a look at the racial history of our country by Ta-Nehisi Coates. It's really powerful and emotional.' -- John Legend Wall Street Journal 'Extraordinary...Ta-Nehisi Coates...writes an impassioned letter to his teenage son-a letter both loving and full of a parent's dread-counselling him on the history of American violence against the black body, the young African-American's extreme vulnerability to wrongful arrest, police violence, and disproportionate incarceration.' -- David Remnick New Yorker