Can We Talk about Race?: And Other Conversations in an Era of School Resegregation (Race, Education, and Democracy) (Paperback)
On Our Shelves Now
Major new reflections on race and schools—by the best-selling author of “Why Are All the Black Kids Sitting Together in the Cafeteria?“
A Simmons College/Beacon Press Race, Education, and Democracy Series Book
Beverly Daniel Tatum emerged on the national scene in 1997 with “Why Are All the Black Kids Sitting Together in the Cafeteria?,“ a book that spoke to a wide audience about the psychological dynamics of race relations in America. Tatum’s unique ability to get people talking about race captured the attention of many, from Oprah Winfrey to President Clinton, who invited her to join him in his nationally televised dialogues on race.
In her first book since that pathbreaking success, Tatum starts with a warning call about the increasing but underreported resegregation of America. A selfdescribed “integration baby“—she was born in 1954—Tatum sees our growing isolation from each other as deeply problematic, and she believes that schools can be key institutions for forging connections across the racial divide.
In this ambitious, accessible book, Tatum examines some of the most resonant issues in American education and race relations:
• The need of African American students to see themselves reflected in curricula and institutions
• How unexamined racial attitudes can negatively affect minority-student achievement
• The possibilities—and complications—of intimate crossracial friendships
Tatum approaches all these topics with the blend of analysis and storytelling that make her one of our most persuasive and engaging commentators on race.
Can We Talk About Race? launches a collaborative lecture and book series between Beacon Press and Simmons College, which aims to reinvigorate a crucial national public conversation on race, education and democracy.
About the Author
Beverly Daniel Tatum is author of "Why Are All the Black Kids Sitting Together in the Cafeteria?" and Assimilation Blues. She is currently president of Spelman College in Atlanta, where she lives with her husband.
"What Tatum seeks to do above all is trigger sometimes challenging discussions about race, and infuse those discussions with a reality-based focus on how race affects us all. Her latest book does that beautifully, asking touch questions, and patiently, inclusively seeking answers."—Boston Globe
"Ten years ago, Tatum's book asked the question, 'Why Are All the Black Kids Sitting Together in the Cafeteria?' Her latest book follows up with a broader question about the nation's readiness to talk honestly about the forces that continue to make race such a thorny issue . . . A probing and ambitious start to a series of books to prod national discussion on issues of race, education, and democracy."—Vanessa Bush, Booklist
"Four research-rich, concisely written essays on race and education, including examinations of the 'resegregation of our schools,' the need for educational curricula and staff that respect the diverse communities they serve, [and] the challenges of interracial friendships . . . What Tatum seeks to do above all is trigger sometimes challenging discussions about race, and infuse those discussions with a reality-based focus on how race affects us all. Her latest book does that beautifully, asking tough questions, and patiently, inclusively seeking answers."—Chuck Leddy, Boston Globe
"Another thoughtful, personal and provocative book that will encourage discussion about many of the difficult issues still surrounding race in America—in and out of the classroom."—Marian Wright Edelman, president, Children's Defense Fund