Cover: We Who Are Dark: The Philosophical Foundations of Black Solidarity, from Harvard University PressCover: We Who Are Dark in PAPERBACK

We Who Are Dark

The Philosophical Foundations of Black Solidarity

Add to Cart

Product Details

PAPERBACK

$30.00 • £24.95 • €27.00

ISBN 9780674025714

Publication Date: 09/15/2007

Text

336 pages

5-1/2 x 8-1/4 inches

Belknap Press

World

African American history resounds with calls for black unity. From abolitionist times through the Black Power movement, it was widely seen as a means of securing a full share of America’s promised freedom and equality. Yet today, many believe that black solidarity is unnecessary, irrational, rooted in the illusion of “racial” difference, at odds with the goal of integration, and incompatible with liberal ideals and American democracy. A response to such critics, We Who Are Dark provides the first extended philosophical defense of black political solidarity.

Tommie Shelby argues that we can reject a biological idea of race and agree with many criticisms of identity politics yet still view black political solidarity as a needed emancipatory tool. In developing his defense of black solidarity, he draws on the history of black political thought, focusing on the canonical figures of Martin R. Delany and W. E. B. Du Bois, and he urges us to rethink many traditional conceptions of what black unity should entail. In this way, he contributes significantly to the larger effort to re-envision black politics and to modernize the objectives and strategies of black freedom struggles for the post–civil rights era. His book articulates a new African American political philosophy—one that rests firmly on anti-essentialist foundations and, at the same time, urges a commitment to defeating racism, to eliminating racial inequality, and to improving the opportunities of those racialized as “black.”

Awards & Accolades

  • A New York Magazine Best Academic Book, 2005
A Little Book about the Big Bang, by Tony Rothman, from Harvard University Press

Recent News

Black lives matter. Black voices matter. A statement from HUP »

From Our Blog

Graphic: Golden yellow stylized sun

HUP ReadUP: Summer Reads

We asked our colleagues, “What is one word you would use to describe an ideal summer read?” Their answers range across all the summer feels, from those easygoing lazy hazy days to that voltage of energy that fires up a reawakening. What’s more, their responses include book recommendations sure to help you breeze through the sunny season—from our own library as well as those of fellow university presses.