by Cornel West

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Plough Quarterly No. 24 - Faith and Politics

release date: Mar 17, 2020
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Plough Quarterly No. 24 - Faith and Politics
No matter who wins the next election, Caesar will remain Caesar, doing some good and some bad. But Christians report to a different king. This issue starts with a provocation. In his opening letter, editor Peter Mommsen suggests Christians are too excited about the wrong politics: "Questions of public justice should matter deeply to Christians. We dare not be indifferent about securing healthcare for all and ending interventionist wars; we must seek to reduce abortions and strengthen families. When an election comes, we should pray and then, perhaps, lend our support to a candidate we judge may, on balance, advance social righteousness. But if the early Christians and the Anabaptists are right, this isn't the politics that matters most. And so, as a matter of faithfulness, we should question how much it deserves of our passion and time. Our allegiance belongs elsewhere." In contrast to an election campaign, this politics may feel grittier and less glamorous. This issue of Plough Quarterly explores what this alternate vision of faithful Christian witness in the political sphere might look like. You'll find articles on: What two leading political theorists of left and right agree on What persecution taught Anabaptists about politics The Bruderhof's interactions with the state Tolstoy's case against making war more humane How some Christians read Romans 13 under fascism

Race Matters, 25th Anniversary

release date: Dec 05, 2017
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Race Matters, 25th Anniversary
The twenty-fifth-anniversary edition of the groundbreaking classic, with a new introduction First published in 1993, on the one-year anniversary of the Los Angeles riots, Race Matters became a national best seller that has gone on to sell more than half a million copies. This classic treatise on race contains Dr. West’s most incisive essays on the issues relevant to black Americans, including the crisis in leadership in the Black community, Black conservatism, Black-Jewish relations, myths about Black sexuality, and the legacy of Malcolm X. The insights Dr. West brings to these complex problems remain relevant, provocative, creative, and compassionate. In a new introduction for the twenty-fifth-anniversary edition, Dr. West argues that we are in the midst of a spiritual blackout characterized by imperial decline, racial animosity, and unchecked brutality and terror as seen in Baltimore, Ferguson, and Charlottesville. Calling for a moral and spiritual awakening, Dr. West finds hope in the collective and visionary resistance exemplified by the Movement for Black Lives, Standing Rock, and the Black freedom tradition. Now more than ever, Race Matters is an essential book for all Americans, helping us to build a genuine multiracial democracy in the new millennium.

Race Matters, 25th Anniversary

release date: Jan 01, 2017
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Race Matters, 25th Anniversary
Race Matters contains West s most powerful essays on the issues relevant to black Americans today: despair, black conservatism, black-Jewish relations, myths about black sexuality, the crisis in leadership in the black community, and the legacy of Malcolm X. And the insights that he brings to these complicated problems remain fresh, exciting, creative, and compassionate.

Unmuted

release date: Mar 01, 2019
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Unmuted
Why do people hate one another? Who gets to speak for whom? Why do so many people combat prejudice based on their race, sexual orientation, or disability? What does segregation look like today? Many of us ponder and discuss urgent questions such as these at home, and see them debated in the media, the classroom, and our social media feeds, but many of us don't have access to the important new ways philosophers are thinking about these very issues. Enter UnMute, the popular podcast hosted by Myisha Cherry, which hosts a diverse group of philosophers and explores their cutting-edge work through casual conversation. This book collects 31 of Cherry's lively and timely interviews, offering an accessible resource through which to encounter some of philosophy's most socially and politically engaged, public-facing work. Its original illustrations, depicting the interview subjects up close, show just how broad a range of philosophers--black, white, and brown, male and female, queer and straight, abled and disabled--are at the center of crucial contemporary conversations. Cherry asks philosophers to talk about their ideas in ways that anyone can understand, explaining how they got interseted in philosophy, and why the questions they investigate matter urgently. Along with the interviews, the volume provides a foreword by Cornel West, a section in which all the interviewees explain how they got into philosophy, and a "Say What?" glossary defining terms that might be new to some readers. Like the podcast that inspired it, the book welcomes in those new to these philosophical questions, those captivated by questions of race, class, gender, and other issues and looking for a new lens through which to examine them, and those well-versed in public philosophy looking for a one-stop guide.

Race Matters

release date: Jan 01, 2017
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Race Matters
Race Matters contains West s most powerful essays on the issues relevant to black Americans today: despair, black conservatism, black-Jewish relations, myths about black sexuality, the crisis in leadership in the black community, and the legacy of Malcolm X. And the insights that he brings to these complicated problems remain fresh, exciting, creative, and compassionate.

Breaking Bread

release date: Nov 10, 2016
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Breaking Bread
In this provocative and captivating dialogue, bell hooks and Cornel West come together to discuss the dilemmas, contradictions, and joys of Black intellectual life. The two friends and comrades in struggle talk, argue, and disagree about everything from community to capitalism in a series of intimate conversations that range from playful to probing to revelatory. In evoking the act of breaking bread, the book calls upon the various traditions of sharing that take place in domestic, secular, and sacred life where people come together to give themselves, to nurture life, to renew their spirits, sustain their hopes, and to make a lived politics of revolutionary struggle an ongoing practice. This 25th anniversary edition continues the dialogue with "In Solidarity," their 2016 conversation at the bell hooks Institute on racism, politics, popular culture and the contemporary Black experience.

Breaking Bread

release date: Nov 10, 2016
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Breaking Bread
In this provocative and captivating dialogue, bell hooks and Cornel West come together to discuss the dilemmas, contradictions, and joys of Black intellectual life. The two friends and comrades in struggle talk, argue, and disagree about everything from community to capitalism in a series of intimate conversations that range from playful to probing to revelatory. In evoking the act of breaking bread, the book calls upon the various traditions of sharing that take place in domestic, secular, and sacred life where people come together to give themselves, to nurture life, to renew their spirits, sustain their hopes, and to make a lived politics of revolutionary struggle an ongoing practice. This 25th anniversary edition continues the dialogue with "In Solidarity," their 2016 conversation at the bell hooks Institute on racism, politics, popular culture and the contemporary Black experience.

Black Prophetic Fire

release date: Oct 07, 2014
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Black Prophetic Fire
An unflinching look at nineteenth- and twentieth-century African American leaders and their visionary legacies. In an accessible, conversational format, Cornel West, with distinguished scholar Christa Buschendorf, provides a fresh perspective on six revolutionary African American leaders: Frederick Douglass, W. E. B. Du Bois, Martin Luther King Jr., Ella Baker, Malcolm X, and Ida B. Wells. In dialogue with Buschendorf, West examines the impact of these men and women on their own eras and across the decades. He not only rediscovers the integrity and commitment within these passionate advocates but also their fault lines. West, in these illuminating conversations with the German scholar and thinker Christa Buschendorf, describes Douglass as a complex man who is both “the towering Black freedom fighter of the nineteenth century” and a product of his time who lost sight of the fight for civil rights after the emancipation. He calls Du Bois “undeniably the most important Black intellectual of the twentieth century” and explores the more radical aspects of his thinking in order to understand his uncompromising critique of the United States, which has been omitted from the American collective memory. West argues that our selective memory has sanitized and even “Santaclausified” Martin Luther King Jr., rendering him less radical, and has marginalized Ella Baker, who embodies the grassroots organizing of the civil rights movement. The controversial Malcolm X, who is often seen as a proponent of reverse racism, hatred, and violence, has been demonized in a false opposition with King, while the appeal of his rhetoric and sincerity to students has been sidelined. Ida B. Wells, West argues, shares Malcolm X’s radical spirit and fearless speech, but has “often become the victim of public amnesia.” By providing new insights that humanize all of these well-known figures, in the engrossing dialogue with Buschendorf, and in his insightful introduction and powerful closing essay, Cornel West takes an important step in rekindling the Black prophetic fire so essential in the age of Obama.

Black Prophetic Fire

release date: Jan 01, 2014
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Black Prophetic Fire
"Celebrated intellectual and activist Cornel West offers an unflinching look at nineteenth- and twentieth-century African American leaders and their visionary legacies. In an accessible, conversational format, Cornel West, with distinguished scholar Christa Buschendorf, provides a fresh perspective on six revolutionary African American leaders: Frederick Douglass, W. E. B. Du Bois, Martin Luther King Jr., Ella Baker, Malcolm X, and Ida Wells-Barnett. West examines the impact of these men and women on their own eras and across the decades. He not only rediscovers the integrity and commitment within these passionate advocates but also their fault lines. West finds that Douglass and, to some extent, Du Bois fall short of the high standards he holds them to, while King has been sanitized and even 'Santaclausified,' rendering him less radical. By providing new insights that humanize all of these well-known figures, West takes an important step in rekindling the Black prophetic fire so essential in the age of Obama"

Keeping Faith

release date: Nov 12, 2012
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Keeping Faith
'The sheer range of West's interests and insights is staggering and exemplary: he appears equally comfortable talking about literature, ethics, art, jurisprudence, religion, and popular-cultural forms.' - Artforum Keeping Faith is a rich, moving and deeply personal collection of essays from one of the leading African American intellectuals of our age. Drawing upon the traditions of Western philosophy and modernity, Cornel West critiques structures of power and oppression as they operate within American society and provides a way of thinking about human dignity and difference afresh. Impressive in its scope, West confidently and deftly explores the politics and philosophy of America, the role of the black intellectual, legal theory and the future of liberal thought, and the fate of African Americans. A celebration of the extraordinary lives of ordinary Americans, Keeping Faith is a petition to hope and a call to faith in the redemptive power of the human spirit.
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