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  • A Map of Future Ruins: On Borders and Belonging

    by Lauren Markham


    “This stunning meditation on nostalgia, heritage, and compassion asks us to dismantle the stories we’ve been told—and told ourselves—in order to naturalize the forms of injustice we’ve come to understand as order.” —Leslie Jamison, author of The Empathy Exams When and how did migration become a crime? Why does ancient Greece remain so important to the West’s idea of itself? How does nostalgia fuel the exclusion and demonization of migrants today? In 2021, Lauren Markham went to Greece, in search of her own Greek heritage and to cover the aftermath of a fire that burned down the largest refugee camp in Europe. Almost no one had wanted the camp—not activists, not the country’s growing neo-fascist movement, not even the government. But almost immediately, on scant evidence, six young Afghan refugees were arrested for the crime. Markham soon saw that she was tracing a broader narrative, rooted not only in centuries of global history but also in myth. A mesmerizing, trailblazing synthesis of reporting, history, memoir, and essay, A Map of Future Ruins helps us see that the stories we tell about migration don’t just explain what happened. They are oracles: they predict the future.

  • I Don't Just Work Here: The New Purpose of Workplace Culture

    by Felicia Joy & Elena Grotto


    Work isn’t what it used to be. Leaders need a field guide that equips them with what to say and do as they face the new culture expectations of today’s employees. Many employees now show up for work not just to do their jobs but also to discover, debate, and digest important social issues. A growing number of workers want to have an impact in the world, and their preferences are a prompt for employers to be more mindful of the role of business in driving societal change, starting with what people experience at work. Felicia Joy and Elena Grotto, experts on behavioral science, business strategy, and organizational culture, share practical guidance to help organizations rise to these new standards by advancing seven behaviors, including the surprising—and perhaps most important—new business skill for high-performing cultures: forgiveness. Managers today are asked to operate as both business leaders and community leaders within the workplace—and the latter skillset is new to many. I Don’t Just Work Here helps managers leverage culture to bolster business results as they replace anxiety with confidence and lead with greater purpose in providing the expanded support employees need to develop and perform. Organizations that take heed, elevate people managers, invest in building a strategic culture, and lead with clear values and behaviors are more likely to have a decisive competitive advantage and greater business impact for years to come.

  • PRE-ORDER: The Collected Essays of Ralph Ellison (Modern Library Classics)

    by Ralph Ellison


    PRE-ORDER: On Sale Date: February 27, 2024

    From the renowned author of Invisible Man,a classic, “elegant” (The New York Times) collection of essays that captures the breadth and complexity of his insights into racial identity, jazz and folklore, and citizenship across six decades. Compiled, edited, and newly revised by Ralph Ellison’s literary executor, John F. Callahan, this definitive volume includes posthumously discovered reviews, criticism, and interviews, as well as the essay collections Shadow and Act (1964), hailed by Robert Penn Warren as “a body of cogent and subtle commentary on the questions that focus on race,” and Going to the Territory (1986), an exploration of literature and folklore, jazz and culture, and the nature and quality of lives that Black Americans lead. With newly discovered essays and speeches, The Collected Essays reveals a more vulnerable, intimate side of Ellison than what we've previously seen. “Raph Ellison,” wrote Stanley Crouch, “reached across race, religion, class and sex to make us all Americans.”

  • PRE-ORDER: The Selected Letters of Ralph Ellison

    by Ralph Ellison


    PRE-ORDER: On Sale Date: February 27, 2024

    A NEW YORK TIMES NOTABLE BOOK • A radiant collection of letters from the renowned author of Invisible Man that traces the life and mind of a giant of American literature, with insights into the riddle of identity, the writer’s craft, and the story of a changing nation over six decades These extensive and revealing letters span the life of Ralph Ellison and provide a remarkable window into the great writer’s life and work, his friendships, rivalries, anxieties, and all the questions about identity, art, and the American soul that bedeviled and inspired him until his death. They include early notes to his mother, written as an impoverished college student; lively exchanges with the most distinguished American writers and thinkers of his time, from Romare Bearden to Saul Bellow; and letters to friends and family from his hometown of Oklahoma City, whose influence would always be paramount. These letters are beautifully rendered first-person accounts of Ellison’s life and work and his observations of a changing world, showing his metamorphosis from a wide-eyed student into a towering public intellectual who confronted and articulated America’s complexities.

  • PRE-ORDER: Academic Branding: A Step-by-Step Guide to Increased Visibility, Authority, and Income

    by Sheena Howard PhD


    PRE-ORDER: On Sale Date: February 27, 2024

    Become a thought leader in your postgraduate field—and make money while doing so, with this step-by-step guide from an academic who has been there. Academic Branding gives academics and scholars the tools and strategies they need to position themselves outside of academia so they can reach the masses and make an impact—without the expense of a publicist. With the practices in this book, readers will build a powerful brand, become a public intellectual, and grow their audience with guidance from Sheena C. Howard, PhD. She’s been where you are now, and she’s ready to help you grow beyond what you imagine. With Dr. Howard’s unique and thorough approach to success in the age of social media, you’ll learn how to: * Reframe the way you think about self-promotion * Identify your brand archetype and create a brand statement * Reach an audience beyond academia * Build multiple revenue streams * Get your ideas (and content) to spread * Create a movement around your expertise * Land major media spots and speaking engagements In a world where anyone who is savvy online can turn themselves into a subject matter expert, it’s important that we lift up and amplify the voices of actual subject matter experts. This guide will teach you how to reach the audience that needs your expertise most, building a brand and achieving financial freedom along the way.

  • Mortevivum: Photography and the Politics of the Visual (On Seeing)

    by Kimberly Juanita Brown


    A powerful examination of the unsettling history of photography and its fraught relationship to global antiblackness. Since photography’s invention, black life has been presented as fraught, short, agonizingly filled with violence, and indifferent to intervention: living death—mortevivum—in a series of still frames that refuse a complex humanity. In Mortevivum, Kimberly Juanita Brown shows us how the visual logic of documentary photography and the cultural legacy of empire have come together to produce the understanding that blackness and suffering—and death—are inextricable. Brown traces this idea from the earliest images of the enslaved to the latest newspaper photographs of black bodies, from the United States and South Africa to Haiti and Rwanda, documenting the enduring, pernicious connection between photography and a global history of antiblackness. Photography's history, inextricably linked to colonialism and white supremacy, is a catalog of othering, surveillance, and the violence of objectification. In the genocide in Rwanda, for instance, photographs after the fact tell viewers that blackness comes with a corresponding violence that no human intervention can abate. In Haiti, the first black republic in the Western Hemisphere, photographic “evidence” of its sovereign failure suggests that the formerly enslaved cannot overthrow their masters and survive to tell the tale. And in South Africa and the United States, a loop of racial violence reminds black subjects of their lower-class status mandated via the state. Illustrating the global nature of antiblackness that pervades photographic archives of the present and the past, Mortevivum reveals how we live in a repetition of imagery signaling who lives and who dies on a gelatin silver print—on a page in a book, on the cover of newspaper, and in the memory of millions.

  • How to Live Free in a Dangerous World: A Decolonial Memoir

    by Shayla Lawson


    “Phenomenal.... A memoir that opens into the world, with brilliance, courage, and elegant prose.... This is a book to read, read again, and remember.”—Imani Perry, New York Times bestselling author of the National Book Award winner South to America Poet and journalist Shayla Lawson follows their National Book Critics Circle finalist This Is Major with these daring and exquisitely crafted essays, where Lawson journeys across the globe, finds beauty in tumultuous times, and powerfully disrupts the constraints of race, gender, and disability. In their new book, Shayla Lawson reveals how traveling can itself be a political act, when it can be a dangerous world to be Black, femme, nonbinary, and disabled. With their signature prose, at turns bold, muscular, and luminous, Shayla Lawson travels the world to explore deeper meanings held within love, time, and the self. Through encounters with a gorgeous gondolier in Venice, an ex-husband in the Netherlands, and a lost love on New Year’s Eve in Mexico City, Lawson’s travels bring unexpected wisdom about life in and out of love. They learn the strength of friendships and the dangers of beauty during a narrow escape in Egypt. They examine Blackness in post-dictatorship Zimbabwe, then take us on a secretive tour of Black freedom movements in Portugal. Through a deeply insightful journey, Lawson leads readers from a castle in France to a hula hoop competition in Jamaica to a traditional theater in Tokyo to a Prince concert in Minnesota and, finally, to finding liberation on a beach in Bermuda, exploring each location—and their deepest emotions—to the fullest. In the end, they discover how the trials of marriage, grief, and missed connections can lead to self-transformation and unimagined new freedoms.

  • Bless the Blood: A Cancer Memoir

    by Walela Nehanda


    A searing debut YA poetry and essay collection about a Black cancer patient who faces medical racism after being diagnosed with leukemia in their early twenties, for fans of Audre Lorde's The Cancer Journals and Laurie Halse Anderson's Shout. When Walela is diagnosed at twenty-three with advanced stage blood cancer, they're suddenly thrust into the unsympathetic world of tubes and pills, doctors who don’t use their correct pronouns, and hordes of "well-meaning" but patronizing people offering unsolicited advice as they navigate rocky personal relationships and share their story online. But this experience also deepens their relationship to their ancestors, providing added support from another realm. Walela's diagnosis becomes a catalyst for their self-realization. As they fill out forms in the insurance office in downtown Los Angeles or travel to therapy in wealthier neighborhoods, they begin to understand that cancer is where all forms of their oppression intersect: Disabled. Fat. Black. Queer. Nonbinary. In Bless the Blood: A Cancer Memoir, the author details a galvanizing account of their survival despite the U.S. medical system, and of the struggle to face death unafraid.

  • White Rat

    by Gayl Jones


    The acclaimed author’s first collection of stories “Gayl Jones’s work represents a watershed in American literature. From a literary standpoint, her form is impeccable . . . and as a Black woman writer, her truth-telling, filled with beauty, tragedy, humor, and incisiveness, is unmatched.” —Imani Perry Gayl Jones has been described as one of the great literary writers of the 20th century and was recently a finalist for both the Pulitzer Prize and The National Book Award. This collection of short fiction was her third book, originally edited and published by Toni Morrison in 1977, and is reissued now alongside her second collection, BUTTER, in paperback for the first time. The collection contains twelve provocative tales that explore the emotional and mental terrain of a diverse cast of characters, from the innocent to the insane. In each, Jones displays her unflinching ability to dive into the most treacherous of psyches and circumstances: the title story examines the identity and relationship conundrums of a black man who can pass for white, earning him the name “White Rat” as an infant; “The Women” follows a girl whose mother brings a line of female lovers to live in their home; “Jevata” details eighteen-year-old Freddy’s relationship with the fifty-year-old title character; “The Coke Factory” tracks the thoughts of a mentally handicapped adolescent abandoned by his mother; and “Asylum” focuses on a woman having a nervous breakdown, trying to protect her dignity and her private parts as she enters an institution. In uncompromising prose, and dialect that veers from northern, educated tongues to down-home southern colloquialisms, Jones illuminates lives that society ignores, moving them to center stage.

  • Hello, Friends!: Stories of Dating, Destiny, and Day Jobs

    by Dulcé Sloan



    Dulcé Sloan’s first memoir is organized into essays from her life. From a childhood moving between cities, starting her own business selling toys at a Miami flea market, to being a Black kid in a predominately white school, she’s always used her masterful wit to challenge the status quo. Her purpose in comedy unfolded while navigating clubs and the set of The Daily Show. Have you ever dated an adult who roller skated, or went out with a mechanic just to get free auto service? Yup, she’s got that story for you. Her stories are both wildly entertaining and culturally resonant.

  • Reach: 40 Black Men Speak on Living, Leading, and Succeeding

    by Ben Jealous


    A timely and important compilation of first-person accounts by black men—including some famous like Russell Simmons, Rev. Al Sharpton, John Legend, along with community leaders known primarily in their respective neighborhoods—this New York Times bestseller describes a defining moment in each of these black men’s lives which motivated them to give back.

    Reach includes forty first-person accounts from well-known men like the Rev. Al Sharpton, John Legend, Isiah Thomas, Bill T. Jones, Louis Gossett, Jr., and Talib Kweli, alongside influential community organizers, businessmen, religious leaders, philanthropists, and educators. These remarkable individuals are living proof that black men are as committed as ever to ensuring a better world for themselves and for others.

    Powerful and indispensable to our ongoing cultural dialogue, Reach explodes myths about black men by providing rare, candid, and deeply personal insights into their lives. It’s a blueprint for better community engagement. It’s an essential resource for communities everywhere.

    Proceeds from the sale of Reach will go to BMe Community, a nonprofit organization dedicated to building caring and prosperous communities inspired by black men. Reach is also a Project of the Kapor Center for Social Impact, one of the founding supporters of President Obama’s My Brother’s Keeper initiative.

  • PRE-ORDER: Cultures in Babylon: Feminism from Black Britain to African America (Feminist Classics)

    by Hazel V. Carby


    PRE-ORDER: On Sale Date: March 12, 2024

    For a decade and a half, since she first appeared in the Birmingham Centre’s collective volume The Empire Strikes Back, Hazel Carby has been on the frontline of the debate over multicultural education in Britain and the US. This book brings together her most important and influential essays, ranging over such topics as the necessity for racially diverse school curricula, the construction of literary canons, Zora Neale Hurston’s portraits of “the Folk,” C.L.R. James and Trinidadian nationalism and black women blues artists, and the necessity for racially diverse school curricula. Carby’s analyses of diverse aspects of contemporary culture are invariably sharp and provocative, her political insights shrewd and often against the grain. A powerful intervention, Culture in Babylon will become a standard reference point in future debates over race, ethnicity and gender.

  • PRE-ORDER: You Get What You Pay For: Essays

    by Morgan Parker


    PRE-ORDER: On Sale Date: March 12, 2024

    The award-winning author of Magical Negro traces the difficulty and beauty of existing as a Black woman through American history, from the foundational trauma of the slave trade all the way up to Serena Williams and the aftermath of Hurricane Katrina Dubbed a voice of her generation, poet and writer Morgan Parker has spent much of her adulthood in therapy, trying to square the resonance of her writing with the alienation she feels in nearly every aspect of life, from her lifelong singleness to a battle with depression. She traces this loneliness to an inability to feel truly safe with others and a historic hyperawareness stemming from the effects of slavery. In a collection of essays as intimate as being in the room with Parker and her therapist, Parker examines America’s cultural history and relationship to Black Americans through the ages. She touches on such topics as the ubiquity of beauty standards that exclude Black women, the implications of Bill Cosby’s fall from grace in a culture predicated on acceptance through respectability, and the pitfalls of visibility as seen through the mischaracterizations of Serena Williams as alternately iconic and too ambitious. With piercing wit and incisive observations, You Get What You Pay For is ultimately a portal into a deeper examination of racial consciousness and its effects on mental well-being in America today. Weaving unflinching criticism with intimate anecdotes, this devastating memoir-in-essays paints a portrait of one Black woman’s psyche—and of the writer’s search to both tell the truth and deconstruct it.

  • PRE-ORDER: The Black Box: Writing the Race

    by Henry Louis Gates Jr.


    PRE-ORDER: On Sale Date: March 19, 2024

    “Henry Louis Gates is a national treasure. Here, he returns with an intellectual and at times deeply personal meditation on the hard-fought evolution and the very meaning of African-American identity, calling upon our country to transcend its manufactured divisions.” — Isabel Wilkerson, author of The Warmth of Other Suns and Caste A magnificent, foundational reckoning with how Black Americans have used the written word to define and redefine themselves, in resistance to the lies of racism and often in heated disagreement with each other, over the course of the country’s history. Distilled over many years from Henry Louis Gates, Jr.’s legendary Harvard introductory course in African American Studies, The Black Box: Writing the Race, is the story of Black self-definition in America through the prism of the writers who have led the way. From Phillis Wheatley and Frederick Douglass, W.E.B. Du Bois and Booker T. Washington, to Zora Neale Hurston and Richard Wright, James Baldwin and Toni Morrison—these writers used words to create a livable world—a "home" —for Black people destined to live out their lives in a bitterly racist society. It is a book grounded in the beautiful irony that a community formed legally and conceptually by its oppressors to justify brutal sub-human bondage, transformed itself through the word into a community whose foundational definition was based on overcoming one of history’s most pernicious lies. This collective act of resistance and transcendence is at the heart of its self-definition as a "community." Out of that contested ground has flowered a resilient, creative, powerful, diverse culture formed by people who have often disagreed markedly about what it means to be "Black," and about how best to shape a usable past out of the materials at hand to call into being a more just and equitable future. This is the epic story of how, through essays and speeches, novels, plays, and poems, a long line of creative thinkers has unveiled the contours of—and resisted confinement in—the "black box" inside which this "nation within a nation" has been assigned, willy nilly, from the nation’s founding through to today. This is a book that records the compelling saga of the creation of a people.

  • PRE-ORDER: There's Always This Year: On Basketball and Ascension

    by Hanif Abdurraqib


    PRE-ORDER: On Sale Date: March 26, 2024

    A poignant, personal reflection on basketball, life, and home—from the author of the National Book Award finalist A Little Devil in America “Mesmerizing . . . not only the most original sports book I’ve ever read but one of the most moving books I’ve ever read, period.”—Steve James, director of Hoop Dreams Growing up in Columbus, Ohio, in the 1990s, Hanif Abdurraqib witnessed a golden era of basketball, one in which legends like LeBron James were forged and countless others weren’t. His lifelong love of the game leads Abdurraqib into a lyrical, historical, and emotionally rich exploration of what it means to make it, who we think deserves success, the tension between excellence and expectation, and the very notion of role models, all of which he expertly weaves together with intimate, personal storytelling. “Here is where I would like to tell you about the form on my father’s jump shot,” Abdurraqib writes. “The truth, though, is that I saw my father shoot a basketball only one time.” There’s Always This Year is a triumph, brimming with joy, pain, solidarity, comfort, outrage, and hope. No matter the subject of his keen focus—whether it’s basketball, or music, or performance—Hanif Abdurraqib’s exquisite writing is always poetry, always profound, and always a clarion call to radically reimagine how we think about our culture, our country, and ourselves.

  • Ain't I an Anthropologist: Zora Neale Hurston Beyond the Literary Icon

    by Jennifer L. Freeman Marshall

    Iconic as a novelist and popular cultural figure, Zora Neale Hurston remains underappreciated as an anthropologist. Is it inevitable that Hurston’s literary authority should eclipse her anthropological authority? If not, what socio-cultural and institutional values and processes shape the different ways we read her work? Jennifer L. Freeman Marshall considers the polar receptions to Hurston’s two areas of achievement by examining the critical response to her work across both fields. Drawing on a wide range of readings, Freeman Marshall explores Hurston’s popular appeal as iconography, her elevation into the literary canon, her concurrent marginalization in anthropology despite her significant contributions, and her place within constructions of Black feminist literary traditions.

    Perceptive and original, Ain’t I an Anthropologist is an overdue reassessment of Zora Neale Hurston’s place in American cultural and intellectual life.

  • The Grift: The Downward Spiral of Black Republicans from the Party of Lincoln to the Cult of Trump

    by Clay Cane


    Part history and part cultural analysis, The Grift chronicles the nuanced history of Black Republicans. Clay Cane lays out how Black Republicanism has been mangled by opportunists who are apologists for racism.

    After the Civil War, the pillars of Black Republicanism were a balanced critique of both political parties, civil rights for all Americans, reinventing an economy based on exploitation, and, most importantly, building thriving Black communities. How did Black Republicanism devolve from revolutionaries like Frederick Douglass to the puppets in the Trump era?

    Whether it's radical conservatives like South Carolina Senator Tim Scott or Supreme Court Justice Clarence Thomas, they are consistently viral news and continuously upholding egregious laws at the expense of their Black brethren. Black faces in high places providing cover for explicit bigotry is one of the greatest threats to the liberation of Black and brown people. By studying these figures and their tactics, Cane exposes the grift and lays out a plan to emancipate our future.

  • PRE-ORDER: Life Is Not a Straight Line: The Upside of Every Downturn in Business and in Life

    by Ken Chenault


    PRE-ORDER: On Sale April 01, 2025

    The life and times—and values and principles—of Ken Chenault, former CEO of American Express, one of the first African Americans to head a Fortune 500 company Ken Chenault’s life confounds stereotypical presumptions about and expectations for a Black American man. Born in Mineola, New York, to a dentist and a hygienist as the civil rights movement began to gather steam, much of his childhood and early adult years unfolded in a modest middle-class setting during the political and social tumult of the 1960s—the Vietnam War, the struggle for racial equality, the fight for women’s rights, the rise of the counterculture. Though he was partly informed by these inescapable influences, even then, Chenault displayed an independence of thought. Although he was athletically gifted, he chose to become a student of history, rather than pursue sports, in an effort to conquer his lack of discipline. As a student at Bowdoin and Harvard Law, and early in his career at Bain & Company, he was constantly on the lookout for educational and professional opportunities that were rare for Blacks. Intending to use his talents to champion civil rights, he found himself fighting to demolish the seemingly intractable racial barriers in the worlds of finance and business. So began his storied career at American Express, where he became known for his innovations and zealous adherence to company-building values and principles: the promotion of empathy to enlarge our understanding of one another; the willingness to accept complexity and uncertainty in crafting solutions, while refusing to yield to despair; and encouragement of unfettered but responsible creativity.

  • PRE-ORDER: Knife: Meditations After an Attempted Murder

    by Salman Rushdie


    PRE-ORDER: On Sale Date: April 16, 2024

    From internationally renowned writer and Booker Prize winner Salman Rushdie, a searing, deeply personal account of enduring—and surviving—an attempt on his life thirty years after the fatwa that was ordered against him Speaking out for the first time, and in unforgettable detail, about the traumatic events of August 12, 2022, Salman Rushdie answers violence with art, and reminds us of the power of words to make sense of the unthinkable. Knife is a gripping, intimate, and ultimately life-affirming meditation on life, loss, love, art—and finding the strength to stand up again.

  • PRE-ORDER: Dear Bi Men: A Black Man's Perspective on Power, Consent, Breaking Down Binaries, and Combating Erasure

    by J.R. Yussuf


    PRE-ORDER: On Sale Date: April 16, 2024

    An unapologetic guide for readers who are Black, masc, and bi—unlearning biphobia, coming out, combatting erasure, and embodying your whole self Through cutting social analysis, personal stories, and need-to-know advice, Dear Bi Men reclaims bi+ visibility in a culture of erasure—and unapologetically centers Blackness in a practical and deeply researched guide to navigating life, work, and relationships as a Black bi+ man. Popular representation of bi and pansexual men is growing, but we’re not there yet: It’s mostly white. It collapses bisexual identity into tired, hypersexualized tropes. And it fails to interrogate the deeply entrenched stereotypes that insist: You’re confused. You just don’t know you’re gay. You’re greedy. You must be great in bed. Author, peer counselor, and creator of #bisexualmenspeak J.R. Yussuf pushes back against these stigmas and misconceptions, exploring how white supremacy reinforces biphobia and dictates what society thinks it means to “be a man.” He contextualizes discourse around queerness and bisexuality within a larger framework that honors readers’ intersecting identities. And he offers deeply practical advice, sharing how to: * Unlearn internalized biphobia and homophobia * Navigate an increasingly hostile digital landscape * Think about coming out: who to tell, why to tell them, and how to do it * Fight back against erasure and stigma * Navigate sex, dating, partnerships, marriage, friendship, and work * Understand your bi+ sexuality through a political lens * Process Black bi+ representation Rich with personal narratives, insightful analysis, and practical advice, this book is a powerful resource for Black bi+ men to reclaim their identity, counter biphobia, and get empowered—and an offering to all readers looking to fight back against the erasure and dehumanization wrought by patriarchy.

  • PRE-ORDER: Pack Light: A Journey to Find Myself

    by Shilletha Curtis


    PRE-ORDER: On Sale Date: May 21, 2024

    After losing her job due to the coronavirus pandemic, a vet tech decides to confront the roots of her childhood traumas by hiking the Appalachian Trail. Pack Light follows a woman's journey changing the narrative of Hiking While Black—because the Great Outdoors belongs to everyone. This memoir will trace Shilletha's thru-hike from Georgia to Maine as she decided to confront the roots of her trauma. Growing up, Curtis suffered from a fractured family life, bullying at school, indifferent teachers, and abuse from people she trusted. Then she discovered the Appalachian Trail, which she successfully hiked in 2021. It took her eight months and four seasons to hike through 14 states, even more impressive given her lifelong struggle with depression, anxiety, PTSD, and ADHD.

  • PRE-ORDER: The Swans of Harlem: Five Black Ballerinas, Fifty Years of Sisterhood, and Their Reclamation of a Groundbreaking History

    by Karen Valby


    PRE-ORDER: On Sale Date: April 30, 2024

    The forgotten story of a pioneering group of five Black ballerinas and their fifty-year sisterhood, a legacy erased from history—until now. At the height of the Civil Rights movement, Lydia Abarca was a Black prima ballerina with a major international dance company—the Dance Theatre of Harlem, a troupe of women and men who became each other’s chosen family. She was the first Black company ballerina on the cover of Dance magazine, an Essence cover star; she was cast in The Wiz and in a Bob Fosse production on Broadway. She performed in some of ballet’s most iconic works with other trailblazing ballerinas, including the young women who became her closest friends—founding Dance Theatre of Harlem members Gayle McKinney-Griffith and Sheila Rohan, as well as first-generation dancers Karlya Shelton and Marcia Sells. These Swans of Harlem performed for the Queen of England, Mick Jagger, and Stevie Wonder, on the same bill as Josephine Baker, at the White House, and beyond. But decades later there was almost no record of their groundbreaking history to be found. Out of a sisterhood that had grown even deeper with the years, these Swans joined forces again—to share their story with the world. Captivating, rich in vivid detail and character, and steeped in the glamour and grit of professional ballet, The Swans of Harlem is a riveting account of five extraordinarily accomplished women, a celebration of both their historic careers and the sustaining, grounding power of female friendship, and a window into the robust history of Black ballet, hidden for too long.

  • PRE-ORDER: Disability Intimacy: Essays on Love, Care, and Desire

    PRE-ORDER: On Sale Date: April 30, 2024

    The much-anticipated follow up to the groundbreaking anthology Disability Visibility: another revolutionary collection of first-person writing on the joys and challenges of the modern disability experience, and intimacy in all its myriad forms. What is intimacy? More than sex, more than romantic love, the pieces in this stunning and illuminating new anthology offer broader and more inclusive definitions of what it can mean to be intimate with another person. Explorations of caregiving, community, access, and friendship offer us alternative ways of thinking about the connections we form with others—a vital reimagining in an era when forced physical distance is at times a necessary norm. But don't worry: there's still sex to consider—and the numerous ways sexual liberation intersects with disability justice. Plunge between these pages and you'll also find disabled sexual discovery, disabled love stories, and disabled joy. These twenty-five stunning original pieces—plus other modern classics on the subject, all carefully curated by acclaimed activist Alice Wong—include essays, photo essays, poetry, drama, and erotica: a full spectrum of the dreams, fantasies, and deeply personal realities of a wide range of beautiful bodies and minds. Disability Intimacy will free your thinking, invigorate your spirit, and delight your desires.

  • PRE-ORDER: Accordion Eulogies: A Memoir of Music, Migration, and Mexico

    by Noé Álvarez


    PRE-ORDER: On Sale Date: May 28, 2024

    Searching, propulsive, and deeply spiritual, Accordion Eulogies is an odyssey to repair a severed family lineage, told through the surprising history of a musical instrument Growing up in Yakima, Washington, Noé Álvarez never knew his grandfather. Stories swirled around this mythologized, larger-than-life figure: That he had abandoned his family, and had possibly done something awful that put a curse on his descendants. About his grandfather, young Noé was sure of only one thing: That he had played the accordion. Now an adult, reckoning with the legacy of silence surrounding his family’s migration from Mexico, Álvarez resolves both to take up the instrument and to journey into Mexico to discover the grandfather he never knew. Álvarez travels across the US with his accordion, meeting makers and players in cities that range from San Antonio to Boston. He uncovers the story of an instrument that’s been central to classic American genres, but also played a critical role in indigenous Mexican history. Like the accordion itself, Álvarez feels trapped between his roots in Mexico and the U.S. As he tries to make sense of his place in the world—as a father, a son, a musician—he gets closer to uncovering the mystery of his origins.

  • PRE-ORDER: Systemic: How Racism is Making Us Sick

    by Layal Liverpool


    PRE-ORDER: On Sale Date: June 18, 2024

    A science-based, data-driven, and global exploration of racial disparities in health care access by virologist, immunologist, and science journalist Layal Liverpool; In the spirit of ambitious bestselling books like Medical Apartheid and Killing the Black Body. The COVID-19 pandemic taught us that viruses disproportionately affect people of color. Here, Layal Liverpool goes a step further to show that this disparity exists for all types of illness and that it is caused by racism. Liverpool will show how racism is woven, invisibly, not just into the structure of medicine and science but into our very bodies. Refuting the false belief that there are biological differences between races, Liverpool goes on to show that racial stereotyping and trauma can however lead to biological changes that make people of color more vulnerable to illness. Systemic tackles: * The problem of racial bias and data gaps in medicine where the default human subject is white * The dangerous health consequences of systemic racism, from the physical and psychological effects of daily micro- and macro-aggressions to intergenerational trauma * The fatal stereotypes that keep people of color undiagnosed, untreated, and unsafe * How we can fix these problems by confronting bias and closing the data gap Using data-driven science, Layal Liverpool shows that racism itself can have biological consequences on the body.

  • PRE-ORDER: The Road Is Good: How a Mother's Strength Became a Daughter's Purpose

    by Uzo Aduba


    PRE-ORDER: On Sale September 17, 2024

    A powerful, timely memoir of Black immigrant identity, the story of an unforgettable matriarch, and a unique coming-of-age story by Nigerian American actress Uzo Aduba. The actress Uzo Aduba came of age grappling with a master juggling act: as one of few Black families in their white Massachusetts suburb, she and her siblings were the unexpected presence in whatever school room or sports team they joined. But Aduba was also rooted by a fierce and nonnegotiable sense of belonging and extraordinary worth that stemmed from her mother’s powerful vision for her children, and their connection to generations of family in Nigeria. The alchemy of being out of place yet driven by fearless conviction powered Aduba to success. The Road Is Good is more than the journey of a young woman determined to survive young adulthood — and to create a workable identity for herself. It is the story of an incredible mother and a testament to matriarchal power. When Aduba’s mother falls ill, the origin of her own power crystallizes and Aduba leaps into a caretaker role, uniquely prepared by the history and tools her mother passed along to become steward of her ancestoral legacy. Deeply mining her family history—gripping anecdotes her mother, aunts, and uncles shared in passing at family celebrations and her own discoveries through countless auditions in New York and her travels to Nigeria—Aduba pieces together a life story imbued with guiding lessons that are both personal and profoundly universal.

  • Jimmy's Rhythm & Blues: The Extraordinary Life of James Baldwin

    by Michelle Meadows


    Celebrate James Baldwin’s one-hundredth birthday anniversary with the first-ever illustrated biography of this legendary writer, orator, activist, and intellectual.

    Before he became a writer, James “Jimmy” Baldwin was a young boy from Harlem, New York, who loved stories. He found joy in the rhythm of music, family, and books.

    But Jimmy also found the blues, as a Black man living in America.

    When he discovered the written word, he discovered true power. Writing gave him a voice. And that voice opened the world to Jimmy. From the publication of the groundbreaking collection of essays The Fire Next Time to his passionate demonstrations during the civil rights movement, Jimmy used his voice fearlessly.

    Michelle Meadows, author of Brave Ballerina and Flying High, introduces young readers to the great American novelist, essayist, poet, playwright, orator, and artist James Baldwin, who, with the fire of his pen, dared a nation to dream of a more equitable world filled with love. Brought to life with warm illustrations by Jamiel Law, Jimmy’s Rhythm & Blues chronicles the life of an incredible visionary who left an indelible mark on American literature and history.

  • Radical Reparations: Healing the Soul of a Nation

    by Marcus Anthony Hunter


    A timely groundbreaking book in the vein of Derrick Bell's Faces at the Bottom of the Well, one of the country's foremost voices on reparations, offers a radical and vital new framework going beyond the current debate over this controversial issue.

    For over a century, the idea of reparations for the descendants of enslaved Black Americans has divided the United States. However, while the iconic phrase "40 acres and a mule" encapsulates the general notion of reparations, history has proven that the damages of enslavement on the African American community far exceed what a plot of land or a check could repair.  

    While reparations are being widely debated once again, current petitions to redress the lasting and collateral consequences of slavery have not moved past economic solutions, even though we know that monetary redress alone is not enough. Not only would many wounds be left unhealed, but relying solely on economics would continue a legacy of neglect for African Americans. In this thoughtful and sure-to-be controversial book, Marcus Anthony Hunter argues that a radical shift in our outlook is necessary; we need more comprehensive solutions such as those currently sought by today's educators, historians, activists, organizers, Afrofuturists, and socially conscious citizens. 

    In Radical Reparations, this conversation shifter, social justice pioneer, change agent, and inventor of the hashtag #BlackLivesMatter, which redefined the global conversation on racism and social justice, offers a unifying and unconventional framework for achieving holistic and comprehensive healing of African American communities. Hunter reimagines reparations through a profound new lens as he defines seven types of compensation: political, intellectual, legal, economic, spatial, social, and spiritual, using analysis of historical documents, comparative international cases, and speculative parables. 

    Profound and revolutionary, trenchant and timely, Radical Reparations provides a compellingly and provocatively reframing of reparations' past, present, and future, offering a unifying way forward for us all.

  • Medgar and Myrlie: Medgar Evers and the Love Story That Awakened America

    by Joy-Ann Reid

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    The host of MSNBC’s The ReidOut and New York Times bestselling author of The Man Who Sold America traces the extraordinary lives and legacy of civil rights icons Medgar and Myrlie Evers, situating Medgar Evers’s assassination as a catalyzing moment in American history.

    Myrlie Louise Beasley met Medgar Evers on her first day of college. They fell in love at first sight, married just one year later, and Myrlie left school to focus on their growing family.

    Medgar became the field secretary for the Mississippi branch of the NAACP, charged with beating back the most intractable and violent resistance to black voting rights in the country. Myrlie served as Medgar’s secretary and confidant, working hand in hand with him as they struggled against public accommodations and school segregation, lynching, violence, and sheer despair within their state’s “black belt.” They fought to desegregate the intractable University of Mississippi, organized picket lines and boycotts, despite repeated terroristic threats, including the 1962 firebombing of their home, where they lived with their three young children.

    On June 12, 1963, Medgar Evers became the highest profile victim of Klan-related assassination of a black civil rights leader at that time; gunned down in the couple’s driveway in Jackson. In the wake of his tragic death, Myrlie carried on their civil rights legacy; writing a book about Medgar’s fight, trying to win a congressional seat, and becoming a leader of the NAACP in her own right.

    In this groundbreaking and thrilling account of two heroes of the civil rights movement, Joy-Ann Reid uses Medgar and Myrlie’s relationship as a lens through which to explore the on-the-ground work that went into winning basic rights for Black Americans, and the repercussions that still resonate today.

  • Dinner on Monster Island: Essays

    by Tania De Rozario


    In this unusual, engaging, and intimate collection of personal essays, Lambda Literary Award finalist Tania De Rozario recalls growing up as a queer, brown, fat girl in Singapore, blending memoir with elements of history, pop culture, horror films, and current events to explore the nature of monsters and what it means to be different.

    Tania De Rozario was just twelve years old when she was gay-exorcised. Convinced that her boyish style and demeanor were a sign of something wicked, her mother and a pair of her church friends tried to “banish the evil” from Tania. That day, the young girl realized that monsters weren’t just found in horror tales. They could lurk anywhere—including your own family and community—and look just like you.

     Dinner on Monster Island is Tania’s memoir of her life and childhood in Singapore—where she discovered how difference is often perceived as deviant, damaged, disobedient, and sometimes, demonic. As she pulls back the veil on life on the small island, she reveals the sometimes kind, sometimes monstrous side of all of us. Intertwined with her experiences is an analysis of the role of women in horror. Tania looks at films and popular culture such as Carrie, The Witch, and The Ring to illuminate the ways in which women are often portrayed as monsters, and how in real life, monsters are not what we think.

     Moving and lyrical, written with earnest candor, and leavened with moments of humor and optimism, Dinner on Monster Island is a deeply personal examination of one woman’s experience grappling with her identity and a fantastic analysis of monsters, monstrous women and the worlds in which they live.

  • Black Caesars and Foxy Cleopatras: A History of Blaxploitation Cinema

    by Odie Henderson

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    A definitive account of Blaxploitation cinema—the freewheeling, often shameless, and wildly influential genre—from a distinctive voice in film history and criticism

    In 1971, two films grabbed the movie business, shook it up, and launched a genre that would help define the decade. Melvin Van Peebles’s Sweet Sweetback’s Baadasssss Song, an independently produced film about a male sex worker who beats up cops and gets away, and Gordon Parks’s Shaft, a studio-financed film with a killer soundtrack, were huge hits, making millions of dollars. Sweetback upended cultural expectations by having its Black rebel win in the end, and Shaft saved MGM from bankruptcy. Not for the last time did Hollywood discover that Black people went to movies too. The Blaxploitation era was born.

    Written by film critic Odie Henderson, Black Caesars and Foxy Cleopatras is a spirited history of a genre and the movies that he grew up watching, which he loves without irony (but with plenty of self-awareness and humor). Blaxploitation was a major trend, but it was never simple. The films mixed self-empowerment with exploitation, base stereotypes with essential representation that spoke to the lives and fantasies of Black viewers. The time is right for a reappraisal, understanding these films in the context of the time, and exploring their lasting influence.

  • Being La Dominicana: Race and Identity in the Visual Culture of Santo Domingo

    by Rachel Afi Quinn

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    Rachel Afi Quinn investigates how visual media portray Dominican women and how women represent themselves in their own creative endeavors in response to existing stereotypes. Delving into the dynamic realities and uniquely racialized gendered experiences of women in Santo Domingo, Quinn reveals the way racial ambiguity and color hierarchy work to shape experiences of identity and subjectivity in the Dominican Republic. She merges analyses of context and interviews with young Dominican women to offer rare insights into a Caribbean society in which the tourist industry and popular media reward, and rely upon, the ability of Dominican women to transform themselves to perform gender, race, and class.

    Engaging and astute, Being La Dominicana reveals the little-studied world of today's young Dominican women and what their personal stories and transnational experiences can tell us about the larger neoliberal world.

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