Nation of Cowards: Black Activism in Barack Obama’s Post-Racial America

Posted in Barack Obama, Books, Media Archive, Monographs, Politics/Public Policy, Social Science, United States on 2012-08-23 01:37Z by Steven

Nation of Cowards: Black Activism in Barack Obama’s Post-Racial America

Indiana University Press
176 pages
6 x 9
Cloth ISBN: 978-0-253-00628-8

David H. Ikard, Associate Professor of English
Florida State University

Martell Lee Teasley, Professor of Social Work
University of Texas, San Antonio

In a speech from which Nation of Cowards derives its title, Attorney General Eric Holder argued forcefully that Americans today need to talk more—not less—about racism. This appeal for candid talk about race exposes the paradox of Barack Obama’s historic rise to the US presidency and the ever-increasing social and economic instability of African American communities. David H. Ikard and Martell Lee Teasley maintain that such a conversation can take place only with passionate and organized pressure from black Americans, and that neither Obama nor any political figure is likely to be in the forefront of addressing issues of racial inequality and injustice. The authors caution blacks not to slip into an accommodating and self-defeating “post-racial” political posture, settling for the symbolic capital of a black president instead of demanding structural change. They urge the black community to challenge the social terms on which it copes with oppression, including acts of self-imposed victimization.

Table of Contents

  • Introduction: Is America a Nation of Cowards or Has Attorney General Eric Holder Lost His Mind?
  • 1. The Teaching Moment that Never Was: Henry Louis Gates, Barack Obama, and the Post-Racial Dilemma
  • 2. “I Know What’s in His Heart”: Enlightened Exceptionalism and the Problem with Using Barack Obama as the Racial Litmus Test for Black Progress and Achievement
  • 3. The Audacity of Reverend Wright: Speaking Truth to Power in the 21st Century
  • 4. Setting the Record Straight: Why Barack Obama and America Cannot Afford to Ignore a Black Agenda
  • 5. Pull Yourself Up by Your Bootstraps: Barack Obama, the Black Poor, and the Problems of Racial Common Sense
  • Index
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