The fundamental litmus test for American democracy-its economy, government, criminal justice system, education, mass media, and culture-remains: how broad and intense are the arbitrary powers used and deployed against black people. In this sense, the problem of the twenty-first century remains the problem of the color line. --from the new Preface
First published in 1993 on the one-year anniversary of the L.A. riots, Race Matters was a national best-seller, and it has since become a groundbreaking classic on race in America.
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. Now more than ever, Race Matters is a book for all Americans, as it helps us to build a genuine multiracial democracy in the new millennium.
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Race Matters was an interesting book to read. I agree with many of this theories and arguments, though I must admit that the chapter on myths about black sexuality can be counter argued. In regards to Malcom's X image that can be controversial. Over all, the book does cover important socio-issues that affect America today.
The one thing that I was intreaged about is that he named the book "RACE matters" but he only focuses on Black and White America, as if these were the only two existing races. I think a different title would suit the book better. But regardless of the title (I guess) one can apply some of his theories and points to ANY race.
Koodos to Mr.West
The premise of "Race Matters" is undeniably important. Cornel West is an exceptional professor and speaker.