by Elizabeth Hinton
“Not since Angela Davis’s 2003 book, Are Prisons Obsolete?, has a scholar so persuasively challenged our conventional understanding of the criminal legal system.” ―Ronald S. Sullivan, Jr., Washington Post
From one of our top historians, a groundbreaking story of policing and “riots” that shatters our understanding of the post–civil rights era.
What began in spring 2020 as local protests in response to the killing of George Floyd by Minneapolis police quickly exploded into a massive nationwide movement. Millions of mostly young people defiantly flooded into the nation’s streets, demanding an end to police brutality and to the broader, systemic repression of Black people and other people of color. To many observers, the protests appeared to be without precedent in their scale and persistence. Yet, as the acclaimed historian Elizabeth Hinton demonstrates in America on Fire, the events of 2020 had clear precursors―and any attempt to understand our current crisis requires a reckoning with the recent past.