Written in the tradition of works by Joan Didion, bell hooks, Toni Morrison, and Eve Ensler, this “profoundly insightful and brilliantly inciting” (Dominique Morisseau, Obie Award-winning playwright) exploration of the soul of the United States—the past, the present, and the future Kevin Powell wants for us all, through the lens and lives of three major figures: his mother, Barack Obama, and Donald Trump.
Ten short years ago, Barack Obama became president of the United States, and changed the course of history. Ten short years ago, our America was hailed globally as a breathtaking example of democracy, as a rainbow coalition of everyday people marching to the same drum beat. We had finally overcome.
But had we?
Both the presidencies of Obama and Donald Trump have produced some of the ugliest divides in history: horrific racial murders, non-stop mass shootings, the explosion of attacks on immigrants and on the LGBTQ community, the rise of anti-Semitism and Islamophobia, a massive gap between the haves and the have-nots, and legions of women stepping forth to challenge sexual violence—and men—in all forms.
In this collection of thirteen powerful essays, “Kevin Powell thoughtfully weaves together the connective tissue between gender, race, sexuality, pop culture, and sports through a series of raw, incredibly personal essays” (Jemele Hill, writer and ESPN anchor). Be it politics, sports, pop culture, hip-hop music, mental health, racism, #MeToo, or his very complicated relationship with his mother, these impassioned essays are not merely a mirror of who we are, but also who and what Powell thinks we ought to be.