Book cover of When Crack Was King: A People's History of a Misunderstood Era by Donovan X. Ramsey

When Crack Was King: A People’s History of a Misunderstood Era

The crack epidemic of the 1980s and 1990s is arguably the least examined crisis in American history. Beginning with the myths inspired by Reagan’s war on drugs, journalist Donovan X. Ramsey’s exacting analysis traces the path from the last triumphs of the Civil Rights Movement to the devastating realities we live with today: a racist criminal justice system, continued mass incarceration and gentrification, and increased police brutality. […Learn More]

Book cover of Home, Land, Security: Deradicalization and the Journey Back from Extremism by Carla Power
Health and Psychology

Home, Land, Security: Deradicalization and the Journey Back from Extremism

What are the roots of radicalism? Journalist Carla Power came to this question well before the January 6, 2021, attack in Washington, D.C., turned our country’s attention to the problem of domestic radicalization. Her entry point was a different wave of radical panic—the way populists and pundits encouraged us to see the young people who joined ISIS or other terrorist organizations as simple monsters. Power wanted to chip away at the stereotypes by focusing not on what these young people had done but why: What drew them into militancy? What visions of the world—of home, of land, of security for themselves and the people they loved—shifted their thinking toward radical beliefs? And what visions of the world might bring them back to society?  […Learn More]

Book cover of My Broken Language: A Memoir by Quiara Alegria Hudes
Biography & Autobiography

My Broken Language: A Memoir

Quiara Alegría Hudes was the sharp-eyed girl on the stairs while her family danced their defiance in a tight North Philly kitchen. She was awed by her mother and aunts and cousins, but haunted by the unspoken, untold stories of the barrio—even as she tried to find her own voice in the sea of language around her, written and spoken, English and Spanish, bodies and books, Western art and sacred altars. Her family became her private pantheon, a gathering circle of powerful orisha-like women with tragic real-world wounds, and she vowed to tell their stories—but first she’d have to get off the stairs and join the dance. She’d have to find her language. […Learn More]

Book cover of The 1619 Project: A New Origin Story by Nikole Hannah-Jones
History

The 1619 Project: A New Origin Story

In late August 1619, a ship arrived in the British colony of Virginia bearing a cargo of twenty to thirty enslaved people from Africa. Their arrival led to the barbaric and unprecedented system of American chattel slavery that would last for the next 250 years. This is sometimes referred to as the country’s original sin, but it is more than that: It is the source of so much that still defines the United States. […Learn More]

Book cover for Black Tudors: The Untold Story by Miranda Kaufmann
Europe

Black Tudors: The Untold Story

A black porter publicly whips a white English gentleman in a Gloucestershire manor house. A heavily pregnant African woman is abandoned on an Indonesian island by Sir Francis Drake. A Mauritanian diver is dispatched to salvage lost treasures from the Mary Rose… Miranda Kaufmann reveals the absorbing stories of some of the Africans who lived free in Tudor England. […Learn More]

Book cover for The Sum of Us: What Racism Costs Everyone and How We Can Prosper Together by Heather McGhee
History

The Sum of Us: What Racism Costs Everyone and How We Can Prosper Together

Heather McGhee’s specialty is the American economy—and the mystery of why it so often fails the American public. From the financial crisis to rising student debt to collapsing public infrastructure, she found a common root problem: racism. But not just in the most obvious indignities for people of color. Racism has costs for white people, too. It is the common denominator of our most vexing public problems, the core dysfunction of our democracy and constitutive of the spiritual and moral crises that grip us all. But how did this happen? And is there a way out? […Learn More]

The Undocumented Americans by Karla Cornejo Villavicencio
Americas

The Undocumented Americans

Writer Karla Cornejo Villavicencio was on DACA when she decided to write about being undocumented for the first time using her own name. It was right after the election of 2016, the day she realized the story she’d tried to steer clear of was the only one she wanted to tell.  So she wrote her immigration lawyer’s phone number on her hand in Sharpie and embarked on a trip across the country to tell the stories of her fellow undocumented immigrants—and to find the hidden key to her own.  […Learn More]

Book cover of Minor Feelings: An Asian American Reckoning by Cathy Park Hong
Biography & Autobiography

Minor Feelings: An Asian American Reckoning

A ruthlessly honest, emotionally charged, and utterly original exploration of Asian American consciousness and the struggle to be human  

Poet and essayist Cathy Park Hong fearlessly and provocatively blends memoir, cultural criticism, and history to expose fresh truths about racialized consciousness in America. Part memoir and part cultural criticism, this collection is vulnerable, humorous, and provocative—and its relentless and riveting pursuit of vital questions around family and friendship, art and politics, identity and individuality, will change the way you think about our world. […Learn More]

Biography & Autobiography

Born a Crime: Stories from a South African Childhood

Trevor Noah’s unlikely path from apartheid South Africa to the desk of The Daily Show began with a criminal act: his birth. Trevor was born to a white Swiss father and a black Xhosa mother at a time when such a union was punishable by five years in prison. Living proof of his parents’ indiscretion, Trevor was kept mostly indoors for the earliest years of his life, bound by the extreme and often absurd measures his mother took to hide him from a government that could, at any moment, steal him away. […Learn More]

Book Cover of Just Mercy: A Story of Justice and Redemption by Bryan Stevenson
Law

Just Mercy: A Story of Justice and Redemption

Bryan Stevenson was a young lawyer when he founded the Equal Justice Initiative, a legal practice dedicated to defending those most desperate and in need:the poor, the wrongly condemned, and women and children trapped in the farthest reaches of our criminal justice system. One of his first cases was that of Walter McMillian, a young man who was sentenced to die for a notorious murder he insisted he didn’t commit. […Learn More]