January 2020 | MahoganyBooks Adult Bestsellers
#1 – I’m Telling the Truth, But I’m Lying: Essays by Bassey Ikpi
“We will not think or talk about mental health or normalcy the same after reading this momentous art object moonlighting as a colossal collection of essays.” –Kiese Laymon, author of Heavy
From her early childhood in Nigeria through her adolescence in Oklahoma, Bassey Ikpi lived with a tumult of emotions, cycling between extreme euphoria and deep depression–sometimes within the course of a single day. By the time she was in her early twenties, Bassey was a spoken word artist and traveling with HBO’s Def Poetry Jam, channeling her life into art. But beneath the façade of the confident performer, Bassey’s mental health was in a precipitous decline, culminating in a breakdown that resulted in hospitalization and a diagnosis of Bipolar II.
In I’m Telling the Truth, But I’m Lying, Bassey Ikpi breaks open our understanding of mental health by giving us intimate access to her own. Exploring shame, confusion, medication, and family in the process, Bassey looks at how mental health impacts every aspect of our lives–how we appear to others, and more importantly to ourselves–and challenges our preconception about what it means to be “normal.” Viscerally raw and honest, the result is an exploration of the stories we tell ourselves to make sense of who we are–and the ways, as honest as we try to be, each of these stories can also be a lie.
#2 – Powernomics: The National Plan to Empower Black America by Claud Anderson
…Dr. Anderson obliterates the myths and illusions of black progress and brings together data and information from many different sources to construct a framework for solutions to the dilemma of Black America.
In PowerNomics: The National Plan, Dr. Anderson proposes new principles, strategies and concepts that show blacks a new way to see, think, and behave in race matters. The new mind set prepares blacks to take strategic steps to create a new reality for their race.
In this book, Dr. Anderson offers insightful analysis and action steps blacks can take to redesign core areas of life – Education, Economics, Politics and Religion – to better benefit their race. The action steps in each area require new empowerment tools that Dr. Anderson presents – a new group vision and a new culture of empowerment – tools designed to counter, if not break many of the racial monopolies in society. Vertical integration and Industrializing black communities are other major concepts and strategies that he presents in the book.
#3 – Black Labor, White Wealth by Claud Anderson
Dr. Claud Anderson is a successful author who has popularized Black history and is widely recognized as one of America’s most influential intellectuals.
He has drawn the nation’s attention to the issue of race and the advantages of redeveloping and industrializing black communities. Dr. Anderson has a broad and varied base of experiences spanning education, business, national and state politics and successful economic and social reform.
His first book is a classic. It tracks slavery and Jim Crow public policies that used black labor to construct a superpower nation. It details how black people were socially engineered into the lowest level of a real life Monopoly game, which they are neither playing or winning. Black Labor is a comprehensive analysis of the issues of race. Dr. Anderson uses the anaylsis in this book to offer solutions to America’s race problem.
A historical analysis of racism and the problem of Black Americans, the research in this book is the foundation for the solutions formulated in Powernomics: The National Plan to Empower Black America.
#4 – Hitting A Straight Lick With a Crooked Stick by Zora Neale Hurston
From “one of the greatest writers of our time” (Toni Morrison)–the author of Barracoon and Their Eyes Were Watching God–a collection of remarkable stories, including eight “lost” Harlem Renaissance tales now available to a wide audience for the first time.
In 1925, Barnard student Zora Neale Hurston–the sole black student at the college–was living in New York, “desperately striving for a toe-hold on the world.” During this period, she began writing short works that captured the zeitgeist of African American life and transformed her into one of the central figures of the Harlem Renaissance. Nearly a century later, this singular talent is recognized as one of the most influential and revered American artists of the modern period.
Hitting a Straight Lick with a Crooked Stick is an outstanding collection of stories about love and migration, gender and class, racism and sexism that proudly reflect African American folk culture. Brought together for the first time in one volume, they include eight of Hurston’s “lost” Harlem stories, which were found in forgotten periodicals and archives. These stories challenge conceptions of Hurston as an author of rural fiction and include gems that flash with her biting, satiric humor, as well as more serious tales reflective of the cultural currents of Hurston’s world. All are timeless classics that enrich our understanding and appreciation of this exceptional writer’s voice and her contributions to America’s literary traditions.
#5 – How to Be an Antiracist by Ibram Kendi
From the National Book Award-winning author of Stamped from the Beginning comes a bracingly original approach to understanding and uprooting racism and inequality in our society–and in ourselves.
“The only way to undo racism is to consistently identify and describe it–and then dismantle it.”
Ibram X. Kendi’s concept of antiracism reenergizes and reshapes the conversation about racial justice in America–but even more fundamentally, points us toward liberating new ways of thinking about ourselves and each other. In How to Be an Antiracist, Kendi asks us to think about what an antiracist society might look like, and how we can play an active role in building it.
In this book, Kendi weaves an electrifying combination of ethics, history, law, and science, bringing it all together with an engaging personal narrative of his own awakening to antiracism.How to Be an Antiracist is an essential work for anyone who wants to go beyond an awareness of racism to the next step: contributing to the formation of a truly just and equitable society.
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