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The Sum of Us: What Racism Costs Everyone and How We Can Prosper Together (2021)

Tekijä: Heather McGhee

Muut tekijät: Katso muut tekijät -osio.

JäseniäKirja-arvostelujaSuosituimmuussijaKeskimääräinen arvioMaininnat
8161826,896 (4.5)27
Politics. Sociology. Nonfiction. HTML:NEW YORK TIMES BESTSELLER ? LONGLISTED FOR THE NATIONAL BOOK AWARD ? One of today??s most insightful and influential thinkers offers a powerful exploration of inequality and the lesson that generations of Americans have failed to learn: Racism has a cost for everyone??not just for people of color.

WINNER OF THE PORCHLIGHT BUSINESS BOOK AWARD ? ONE OF THE BEST BOOKS OF THE YEAR: Time, The Washington Post, St. Louis Post-Dispatch, Ms. magazine, BookRiot, Library Journal
??This is the book I??ve been waiting for.???Ibram X. Kendi, #1 New York Times bestselling author of How to Be an Antiracist

Look for the author??s new podcast, The Sum of Us, based on this book!

Heather McGhee??s specialty is the American economy??and the mystery of why it so often fails the American public. From the financial crisis of 2008 to rising student debt to collapsing public infrastructure, she found a root problem: racism in our politics and policymaking. But not just in the most obvious indignities for people of color. Racism has costs for white people, too. It is the common denominator of our most vexing public problems, the core dysfunction of our democracy and constitutive of the spiritual and moral crises that grip us all. But how did this happen? And is there a way out?
McGhee embarks on a deeply personal journey across the country from Maine to Mississippi to California, tallying what we lose when we buy into the zero-sum paradigm??the idea that progress for some of us must come at the expense of others. Along the way, she meets white people who confide in her about losing their homes, their dreams, and their shot at better jobs to the toxic mix of American racism and greed. This is the story of how public goods in this country??from parks and pools to functioning schools??have become private luxuries; of how unions collapsed, wages stagnated, and inequality increased; and of how this country, unique among the world??s advanced economies, has thwarted universal healthcare.
But in unlikely places of worship and work, McGhee finds proof of what she calls the Solidarity Dividend: the benefits we gain when people come together across race to accomplish what we simply can??t do on our own. The Sum of Us is not only a brilliant analysis of how we arrived here but also a heartfelt message, delivered with startling empathy, from a black woman to a multiracial America. It leaves us with a new vision for a future in which we finally realize that life can be more than a zero-sum game.… (lisätietoja)
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» Katso myös 27 mainintaa

Näyttää 1-5 (yhteensä 17) (seuraava | näytä kaikki)
Much as I empathize with this book’s perspective, I found the analysis lacking and the conclusions incredulous.

Her travels and reading have convinced her that America has “reached a productive and moral limit” to the I-win-you-lose school of self-government. That it’s time to open the gates to economic and social parity. That public policy in this regard can be judged a complete failure. That if the poor and downtrodden pull together, a new age will magically appear. (Is this the dawn of Aquarius?)

McGhee figures that a Truth and Transformation committee will kickstart America onto a path of justice and economic wellbeing for all. This in a country whose track record is to beggar people who need a doctor, higher education, a home, or try to make a living.

It is another cruel tale of American exceptionalism, but in this case Americans have proven themselves exceptionally bad at self-governance. The binding metaphor is of a community that fills in its community swimming pool to keep the races from mixing, something that happened with astonishing regularity in the last century, both literally and figuratively.

As another reader of this book has pointed out, the book’s title is misleading. It isn’t about “how we can prosper together,” it’s a litany of situations where the many (read: white people) have prospered at the expense of the few (read: black people).

And as former Labor Secretary Robert Reich has pointed out in his endless Instagram screeds, the pandemic has proven it will happen again and again: the rich will find ways to get much richer.

Donald Trump presented his one man committee on truth. It has led America down a rabbit-hole not of transformation but of recrimination, fantasy, and self-justification such that I would argue it actually launched a new DARK AGES for mankind.

The good news for Americans is that they’re not alone. Piracy of the public agenda is an epidemic around the globe. ( )
  MylesKesten | Jan 23, 2024 |
White America has been cutting off its nose to spite its face. Heather McGee calls this "drained pool politics." Rather than share a public pool with Black people, whites would rather drain the pool. Now no one has a pool (except, of course, the rich).

Can we change the "us vs. them" zero-sum mentality? I think the powerful idea in this book is that being anti-racist is not a selfless act for white people. Anti-racism improves the lives of BIPOC *and* white people. To quote the book:

Everything depends on the answer to this question. Who is an American, and what are we to one another? Politics offers two visions: one in which we are competitors and another in which our proximity forces us to admit our common humanity. The narrative that white people should see the well-being of people of color as a threat to their own is one of the most powerful stories in America. Until we destroy that idea, opponents of progress can always unearth it and use it to block any collective action that benefits us all.


There are some hopeful stories in this book where folks reaped a "solidarity dividend" through unionizing a diverse workforce or getting out the vote or passing new legislation.

McGhee also says early on that her book isn't meant to minimize the impact of racism on BIPOC. She says she's "widening the aperture to show the costs of white supremacy on our entire society." We're used to only thinking about the harm racism has done to BIPOC. If you zoom out, you can see that it harms us all. ( )
  LibrarianDest | Jan 3, 2024 |
Very depressing until the end. There’s a vision to move forward, but so many obstacles too. ( )
  danielskatz | Dec 26, 2023 |
Just a few excerpts:
pages 203-204 "Racial resentment goes through government for us. For most of our history, the government was racist. But many white people now believe, consciously or unconsciously, that the government has taken the other side and is now changing the 'proper' racial order through social spending, civil rights laws, and affirmative action. This makes the government untrustworthy. And so, racial resentment by whites and distrust of government are very highly correlated. And then distrust of government and not wanting government to do anything about climate change..."
pp 280-281 "Dr. Katherine W. Phillips...made the conclusion that it's the mental friction that creates diversity's productive energy... "people work harder in diverse environments both cognitively and socially. They might not like it but the hard work can lead to better outcomes.""
p282 Truth, Racial Healing and Transformation
p289 ...we must challenge ourselves to live our lives in solidarity across color, origin and class; we must demand changes to the rules in order to disrupt the very notion that those who have more money are worth more in our democracy and our economy. Since this country's founding, we have not allowed our diversity to be our superpower, and the result is that the United States is not more than the sum of disparate parts. But it could be. And if it were, all of us would prosper.....we are so much more when the "We" in "We the People" is not some of us, but all of us. We are greater than, and greater for, the sum of us." ( )
  pollycallahan | Jul 1, 2023 |
There was a lot of good stuff in the book, but, there was also a lot that was problematic for me.

Not the author’s fault, but I was disappointed after reading the book (on Kindle) to discover that there were extensive end notes that aren’t linked to from the main text, so I never had the opportunity to look at the sources for the author’s assertions as I was reading them. I’ve read plenty of other Kindle books with linked footnotes so I know this is perfectly doable. The publisher should be ashamed for treating the author and readers so disrespectfully. ( )
  steve02476 | Jan 3, 2023 |
Näyttää 1-5 (yhteensä 17) (seuraava | näytä kaikki)
I am amazed with your storytelling, great job! If you allow, may I share your book to facebook in order to reach more readers? And by the way, NovelStar is currently conducting a writing competition - You have a great potential.
lisäsi MarshaMellow | muokkaaLibraryThing.com, Marsha Mellow
 

» Lisää muita tekijöitä (3 mahdollista)

Tekijän nimiRooliTekijän tyyppiKoskeeko teosta?Tila
Heather McGheeensisijainen tekijäkaikki painoksetlaskettu
Ake, RachelKannen suunnittelijamuu tekijäeräät painoksetvahvistettu
Burgess, Andreasauth picmuu tekijäeräät painoksetvahvistettu
Glasserman, DebbieSuunnittelijamuu tekijäeräät painoksetvahvistettu
McConochie,DavidKansikuvataiteilijamuu tekijäeräät painoksetvahvistettu
Tulk-Hart, FrancesKuvittajamuu tekijäeräät painoksetvahvistettu
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Englanninkielinen Wikipedia

-

Politics. Sociology. Nonfiction. HTML:NEW YORK TIMES BESTSELLER ? LONGLISTED FOR THE NATIONAL BOOK AWARD ? One of today??s most insightful and influential thinkers offers a powerful exploration of inequality and the lesson that generations of Americans have failed to learn: Racism has a cost for everyone??not just for people of color.

WINNER OF THE PORCHLIGHT BUSINESS BOOK AWARD ? ONE OF THE BEST BOOKS OF THE YEAR: Time, The Washington Post, St. Louis Post-Dispatch, Ms. magazine, BookRiot, Library Journal
??This is the book I??ve been waiting for.???Ibram X. Kendi, #1 New York Times bestselling author of How to Be an Antiracist

Look for the author??s new podcast, The Sum of Us, based on this book!

Heather McGhee??s specialty is the American economy??and the mystery of why it so often fails the American public. From the financial crisis of 2008 to rising student debt to collapsing public infrastructure, she found a root problem: racism in our politics and policymaking. But not just in the most obvious indignities for people of color. Racism has costs for white people, too. It is the common denominator of our most vexing public problems, the core dysfunction of our democracy and constitutive of the spiritual and moral crises that grip us all. But how did this happen? And is there a way out?
McGhee embarks on a deeply personal journey across the country from Maine to Mississippi to California, tallying what we lose when we buy into the zero-sum paradigm??the idea that progress for some of us must come at the expense of others. Along the way, she meets white people who confide in her about losing their homes, their dreams, and their shot at better jobs to the toxic mix of American racism and greed. This is the story of how public goods in this country??from parks and pools to functioning schools??have become private luxuries; of how unions collapsed, wages stagnated, and inequality increased; and of how this country, unique among the world??s advanced economies, has thwarted universal healthcare.
But in unlikely places of worship and work, McGhee finds proof of what she calls the Solidarity Dividend: the benefits we gain when people come together across race to accomplish what we simply can??t do on our own. The Sum of Us is not only a brilliant analysis of how we arrived here but also a heartfelt message, delivered with startling empathy, from a black woman to a multiracial America. It leaves us with a new vision for a future in which we finally realize that life can be more than a zero-sum game.

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