Articles tagged "punishment"

NYTBR’s 10 Best Books of 2017 & Editor’s Picks

HOORAY! Two nonfiction titles made the New York Times Book Review‘s “10 Best Books of 2017” list and five more (plus two honorable mentions) are New York Times Critics’ Top Books of 2017!

LOCKING UP OUR OWN: Crime and Punishment in Black America by James Forman Jr.
A former public defender in Washington, Forman has written a masterly account of how a generation of black officials, beginning in the 1970s, wrestled with recurring crises of violence and drug use in the nation’s capital. What started out as an effort to assert the value of black lives turned into an embrace of tough-on-crime policies — with devastating consequences for the very communities those officials had promised to represent. Forman argues that dismantling the American system of mass incarceration will require a new understanding of justice, one that emphasizes accountability instead of vengeance.

PRAIRIE FIRES: The American Dreams of Laura Ingalls Wilder by Caroline Fraser
Fraser’s biography of the author of “Little House on the Prairie” and other beloved books about her childhood during the era of westward migration captures the details of a life — and an improbable, iconic literary career — that has been expertly veiled by fiction. Exhaustively researched and passionately written, this book refreshes and revitalizes our understanding of Western American history, giving space to the stories of Native Americans displaced from the tribal lands by white settlers like the Ingalls family as well as to the travails of homesteaders, farmers and everyone else who rushed to the West to extract its often elusive riches. Ending with a savvy analysis of the 20th-century turn toward right-wing politics taken by Wilder and her daughter, Rose Wilder Lane, Fraser offers a remarkably wide-angle view of how national myths are shaped.

Dwight Garner

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Read, Reflect & Discuss

“After a contentious campaign season filled with divisive rhetoric, we are now hearing from our members and in the news media about incidents of bigotry and harassment within our communities. During times like these, our nation’s 120,000 public, academic, school, and special libraries are invaluable allies inspiring understanding and community healing. Libraries provide a safe place for individuals of all ages and backgrounds and for difficult discussions on social issues.— ALA President Julie B. Todaro’s statement on Libraries, the Association, Diversity, and Inclusion

It’s important, now more than ever, to continue reading, reflecting, and engaging in open dialogue about the issues facing us all as a nation. Here are our picks of new and forthcoming titles to help do just that:

TEARS WE CANNOT STOP: A Sermon to White America by Michael Eric Dyson
As the country grapples with race with anguish and anger at a level not seen since the 60s, one of America’s leading black voices speaks out honestly and provocatively to white America. “University Professor of Sociology at Georgetown University and a leading public intellectual once ranked among the 100 Most Influential African Americans by Ebony magazine, Dyson here expands on his editorial, challenging white America to do its part in improving race relations. Brief yet pointed; with comparisons to James Baldwin’s THE FIRE NEXT TIME and Ta-Nehisi Coates’s BETWEEN THE WORLD AND ME.” — Library Journal, pre-pub alert

WE GON’ BE ALRIGHT: Notes on Race and Resegregation by Jeff Chang
A provocative and timely collection of essays from a celebrated cultural critic on race, diversity, and resegregation. “Readers seeking remedies to racial discord will instead find a multifaceted history lesson coupled with troubling updates on recent urban upsets within the author’s interconnected discourse. With his galvanizing message, Chang reiterates that while there is much work to be done on the inequality front, the opportunity to ‘get it right’ has not passed us by. A compelling and intellectually thought-provoking exploration of the quagmire of race relations.” — Kirkus Reviews, starred review

I’M JUDGING YOU by Luvvie Ajayi
“Ajayi, known in the social-media sphere as Awesomely Luvvie after her blog, which attracts 500,000 readers a month, has crafted a smart, vividly humorous handbook for the social-media generation, which is all of us. Her ‘do-better’ calls for us to reclaim common sense, compassion, and critical thinking, in both personal and online interactions. Astute and timely advice, wittily presented.” — Booklist, starred review

WHITE RAGE: The Unspoken Truth of Our Racial Divide by Carol Anderson
From the end of the Civil War to our combustible present, an acclaimed historian reframes the conversation about race, chronicling the powerful forces opposed to black progress in America. “A book that provides necessary perspective on the racial conflagrations in the U.S.” — Kirkus Reviews readmoreremove

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