Notes from an Uneven Playing Field
This event includes a book signing
February 3, 2020
Harvard Book Store
1256 Massachusetts Ave., Cambridge, MA 02138
This event is free; no tickets are required.
Harvard Book Store welcomes ESPN writer and NPR sports correspondent HOWARD BRYANT for a discussion of his latest book, Full Dissidence: Notes from an Uneven Playing Field.
About Full Dissidence
Whether the issues are protest, labor, patriotism, or class division, it is clear that professional sports are no longer simply fun and games. Rather, the industry is a hotbed of fractures and inequities that reflect and even drive some of the most divisive issues in our country. The nine provocative and deeply personal essays in Full Dissidence confront the dangerous narratives that are shaping the current dialogue in sports and mainstream culture. The book is a reflection on a culture where African Americans continue to navigate the sharp edges of whiteness—as citizens who are always at risk of being told, often directly from the White House, to go back to where they came from. The topics Howard Bryant takes on include the player-owner relationship, the militarization of sports, the myth of integration, the erasure of black identity as a condition of success, and the kleptocracy that has forced America to ask itself if its beliefs of freedom and democracy are more than just words.
In a time when authoritarianism is creeping into our lives and is being embraced in our politics, Full Dissidence will make us question the strength of the bonds we think we have with our fellow citizens, and it shows us why we must break from the malignant behaviors that have become normalized in everyday life.
Praise for Full Dissidence
“This collection of essays is everything I hold dear, a searing rejection of everything racist America holds dear inside and outside of the lines. Howard Bryant does not hold back in his withering and thoughtful dissections and rejections of the racial politics of athletics, and the athletic politics of race. Full Dissidence is an oracle.” —Ibram X. Kendi, National Book Award-winning author of Stamped from the Beginning and How to Be an Antiracist
“To call Full Dissidence fiery would miss the point. Its passion is matched by precision. Howard Bryant has written a stirring tour de force that places important issues of sports in the proper context of their current times and historical precedent, and the result is a book that will be read for years to come as we try to make sense of these chaotic times.” —Bomani Jones, co-host, ESPN’s High Noon
“Howard Bryant brings scorching insights and analyses into the murky world of professional athletics. Bryant’s writing is lucid and purposeful, weaving politics and powerful critiques of the racial and gendered hierarchies that rule the world of high-stakes, professional sports throughout his gripping prose. Sports may be his starting point, but Bryant is attacking capitalist culture and its infiltration into all aspects of our lives, including the games we love to watch to get away from it all. An excellent contribution!” —Keeanga-Yamahtta Taylor, author of From #BlackLivesMatter to Black Liberation
Walking from the Harvard Square T station: 2 minutes
As you exit the station, reverse your direction and walk east along Mass. Ave. in front of the Cambridge Savings Bank. Cross Dunster St. and proceed along Mass. Ave for three more blocks. You will pass Au Bon Pain, JP Licks, and TD Bank. Harvard Book Store is located at the corner of Mass. Ave. and Plympton St.
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