How to Be a (Young) Antiracist
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A Lot or a Little?
The parents' guide to what's in this book.
What Parents Need to Know
Parents need to know that How to Be a (Young) Antiracist a collaboration by Ibram X. Kendi (Stamped: Racism, Antiracism, and You) and Nic Stone (Dear Martin) illustrates how we are all raised to unconsciously adopt racist ideas (as well as sexist, homophobic, and classist ones) and how we can deliberately choose to defy those ideas and become antiracist. It is an adaptation of Kendi's 2019 book for adults, How to Be an Antiracist. Stone narrates the book as an address to Ibram's younger self, leading him through his personal history, weaving in explanations and definitions along the way. There are mentions of violent events such as killings by police and lynchings. The so-called war on drugs and statistics on drug use by different racial groups are discussed. There's a discussion of stereotypes about "hypersexuality" in Black people. This book includes a good discussion of slurs and of groups reappropriating derogatory language for their own purposes, including the "N" word and "queer."
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What's the Story?
When HOW TO BE A (YOUNG) ANTIRACIST begins, one coauthor, Nic Stone, introduces herself as the narrator, and readers meet the other coauthor, Ibram X. Kendi, as a young child, before he has learned the lessons that will be delivered in the book.
Is It Any Good?
This book takes a clever, engaging approach to its subject matter. In How To Be a (Young) Antiracist, co-authors Ibram X. Kendi and Nic Stone put young (12 and up) readers into the mind of Kendi when he was their age. In tracing Kendi's gradual awakening to the strains of racism, sexism, homophobia, and classism in his own thinking, they defuse the discomfort that might arise when they ask readers to acknowledge these thoughts and beliefs in themselves.
Talk to Your Kids About ...
Families can talk about what "racism" means. Is racism a structural problem, as the authors say? Is it an interpersonal problem?
The young main (Kendi) changes his perceptions over the course of the story. Have you ever changed a major belief about something? What happened?
Why do you think the authors chose to structure the book as they did: as a communication between Stone and Kendi's younger self? Did you identify with the young Kendi?
- Authors: Ibram X. Kendi, Nic Stone
- Genre: History
- Topics: Activism, Great Boy Role Models, Great Girl Role Models, History
- Character Strengths: Communication, Perseverance, Teamwork
- Book type: Non-Fiction
- Publisher: Kokila
- Publication date: January 31, 2023
- Publisher's recommended age(s): 12 - 17
- Number of pages: 208
- Last updated: March 27, 2023
Our Editors Recommend
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