Literature about oppression and socialÂ injustice usually sounds more interestingÂ than it readsâ€”and it doesnâ€™t help thatÂ self-righteous activists make themselvesÂ redundant through repetition. Thankfully,Â in The Meaning of Freedom and Other Difficult Dialogues, famed activist Angela Y.Â Davis proves that itâ€™s still possible to findÂ a new, refreshing way to discuss race, gender,Â class, and sexuality. In this heartfeltÂ and on-point examination through previouslyÂ unpublished speeches, Davis discussesÂ these issues with simple languageÂ and challenges us to think about how feminism and racism relate to our everyday lives. InÂ the opening selection, â€śReport from Harlem,â€ť she considers the ways in which capitalistÂ America damages the youth of our time. Later, in writing on justice for LGBT communities,Â she discusses the way our sexual preferences define our lives and attempts to helpÂ those suffering from stigma. I finished the last page feeling empowered, better educatedÂ about the modern world, and ready to smash the patriarchy.
The Meaning of Freedom: And Other Difficult Dialogues, $10.85, amazon.com
By Jessica Wolford
This review appears in the Oct/Nov 2012 issue of BUST Magazine with cover girl Aubrey Plaza. Subscribe now.
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