We Can't Breathe:
On Black Lives, White Lies, and the Art of Survival
in conversation with ADRIAN WALKER
This event includes a book signing
October 19, 2018
Harvard Book Store
1256 Massachusetts Ave., Cambridge, MA 02138
This event is free; no tickets are required.
Harvard Book Store welcomes JABARI ASIM—author, poet, playwright, and associate professor at Emerson College—for a discussion of his latest book, We Can't Breathe: On Black Lives, White Lies, and the Art of Survival. He will be joined in conversation by Boston Globe columnist ADRIAN WALKER.
About We Can't Breathe
In We Can’t Breathe, Jabari Asim disrupts what Toni Morrison has exposed as the “Master Narrative” and replaces it with a story of black survival and persistence through art and community in the face of centuries of racism. In eight wide-ranging and penetrating essays, he explores such topics as the twisted legacy of jokes and falsehoods in black life; the importance of black fathers and community; the significance of black writers and stories; and the beauty and pain of the black body. What emerges is a rich portrait of a community and culture that has resisted, survived, and flourished despite centuries of racism, violence, and trauma. These thought-provoking essays present a different side of American history, one that doesn’t depend on a narrative steeped in oppression but rather reveals black voices telling their own stories.
"A collection of essays that go wide and deep into the black experience in America. As a former editor and columnist for the Washington Post and editor-in-chief of the NAACP's The Crisis, Asim brings an impressive breadth of experience to these pieces. He places current events within the context of a legacy that is literary, political, and cultural, as well as racial, with a voice that is both compelling and convincing . . . A sharp vision that challenges readers to shift perspective and examine conventional narratives." ―Kirkus Reviews (starred review)
"In this small but expansive collection of essays, writer and cultural critic Asim draws on the full breadth of black history in the United States, illuminating the story of black resilience through the centuries . . . Melding the personal with the national and cultural, this collection is a must-read." —Publishers Weekly
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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