We took a break from movies this week to discuss Caste: The Origins of Our Discontents by Isabel Wilkerson, published in August 2020 by Random House. In it, Wilkerson contends that racism in the United States is closely akin to the caste system in India and the violence of Nazi Germany. The book’s reception has been overwhelmingly positive since its release. It was a #1 New York Times bestseller, has won or been nominated for numerous awards, has sold over half a million copies by year’s end, and Netflix has plans to produce an adaptation directed by Ava DuVernay.
We……did not receive it as warmly. The book gave us a LOT to dig into, however. Charisse Burden-Stelly’s review, “Caste Does Not Explain Race” offers an extremely sharp critique of the book that helped inform our thinking on Wilkerson’s arguments, and we highly recommend you read her piece (even if you don’t plan to read the book!).
Thanks to slfhlp for providing us some SICK BEATS for our intro and outro.
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