Gonna be honest folks, I haven’t done a great deal of reading this past week. So instead I’m gonna talk about a few non-fiction books I plan to read soon. I don’t talk about non-fiction very often cos this is primarily a science fiction and fantasy blog, but I love non-fiction and don’t talk about it enough. So, three non-fiction books I’ve got on my radar right now.
IF THEY COME IN THE MORNING by Angela Davis
One of America’s most historic political trials is undoubtedly that of Angela Davis. Opening with a letter from James Baldwin to Davis, and including contributions from numerous radicals such as Black Panthers George Jackson, Huey P. Newton, Bobby Seale and Erica Huggins, this book is not only an account of Davis’s incarceration and the struggles surrounding it, but also highlighted as one the most comprehensive and thorough analyses of the prison system in the United States. Since this book was written, the carceral system in the US has seen unprecedented growth, with more of America’s Black population behind bars than ever before. And as recent events have reinforced, the analysis of the role of prisons and the policing of Black populations offered by Davis and her comrades in this volume remains as pertinent today as the day it was first published.
INSURGENT EMPIRE: ANTICOLONIAL RESISTANCE AND BRITISH DISSENT by Priyamvada Gopal
INSURGENT EMPIRE is a book about about how Britain’s enslaved and colonial subjects were active agents in their own liberation. What is more, they shaped British ideas of freedom and emancipation back in the United Kingdom. Priyamvada Gopal examines a century of dissent on the question of empire and shows how British critics of empire were influenced by rebellions and resistance in the colonies, from the West Indies and East Africa to Egypt and India. This book aims to set the record straight in demonstrating that these people were much more than victims of imperialism or, subsequently, the passive beneficiaries of an enlightened British conscience—they were insurgents whose legacies shaped and benefited the nation that once oppressed them.
BACK TO BLACK: BLACK RADICALISM FOR THE 21ST CENTURY by Kehinde Andrews
BACK TO BLACK traces the long and eminent history of Black radical politics. Born out of resistance to slavery and colonialism, its rich past encompasses figures such as Marcus Garvey, Angela Davis, the Black Panthers and the Black Lives Matter activists of today. At its core it argues that racism is inexorably embedded in the fabric of society, and that it can never be overcome unless by enacting change outside of this suffocating system. Yet this Black radical tradition has been diluted and moderated over time; wilfully misrepresented and caricatured by others; divested of its legacy, potency, inclusivity and force for global change. Kehinde Andrews explores the true roots of this tradition, and connects the dots to today’s struggles by showing what a renewed politics of Black radicalism might look like in the 21st century.
I’m thinking of making this a monthly post, to boost some non-fiction and just get a chance to talk about the stuff I’m reading that isn’t magic and spaceships, as much as I love all that. It won’t be for all of my readers and that’s fine, but I hope that if you are a non-fiction reader (or even if you’re not) you might find something to interest you 🙂
Did you enjoy this post? While you’re here why not check out some reviews and if you happen to enjoy yourself, follow the blog and you’ll never miss a post!