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THE BOOK To Understand 2020, and Beyond ... | @Kevin_Powell


As an unforgettable and life-changing 2020 nears end, Kevin Powell’s  
When We Free The World  
humbly suggests a road to healing from racism, sexism, fear, division, and COVID-19

“I knew that if I were ever going to be free, truly free, and if you, we, were ever going to be free, truly free, then it would have to begin in our minds, in our hearts, in our spirits, with the humble understanding that love, sweet love, would have to defeat hate; that forgiveness, gentle forgiveness, would have to defeat revenge; that empathy and compassion, heartfelt empathy and heartfelt compassion, would have to defeat the reckless disregard of each other; that action has to be the best friend of great ideas else the ideas mean nothing; that it is useless to say, over and over, that hurt people hurt other people, that as Pastor Mike Walrond in Harlem declares, covered people have to cover other people, that we must, well, help ourselves, and we must help each other; and that the sorrow songs we hum and deliver in this place called America will eventually have to be replaced by back-bending shouts of freedom as our souls are being born, again.”


—Kevin Powell, Writer and Civil, and Human Rights Activist


 Surviving 2020 is an achievement second only to overcoming one’s most tragic personal crisis. Ongoing tumultuous moments left many feeling without refuge as a global pandemic mandated that even those most vulnerable be isolated from loved ones.

Kevin Powell’s When We Free The World, a poignant compilation of essays that boldly take on the fundamental trials of 2020, does so while offering hope.

In its essay, “A letter to my 9-year-old friend during the coronavirus pandemic,” When We Free The World humbly suggests maintaining a victorious mindset to combat COVID-19. “There will be more deaths, more tears, more depression, this I know,” Powell writes. “There will be more false starts and false promises from some of our leaders, this I know. But for those of us who will survive this, like you, like me, we must commit everything we can, to do better, to be better, to love and honor every human being, to love and honor our earth, to be the consistent kindness and healing and forgiveness and love we need to see, for the rest of our lives.”

Kindness, compassion, and unity are attributes Powell urges advocates of anti-racism and Black Lives Matter to adopt. “True White progressives understand that if White Americans are serious about change, are serious about ending racism, then you do not practice or embrace racism, White supremacy, White privilege, against Black people or people of color in any form, including using the legal system to hurt or take them down when they are essentially good people,” he stresses. 

In taking a stand against sexism in the essay “Between Russell Simmons and The World and Oprah,” Powell urges more men to join the fight in ways including re-thinking and re-defining manhood. He notes that a “humble, genuine apology” to women is a good place to start.

Inspired by the poetic dream montage of Langston Hughes, the prophetic letter sermon of James Baldwin, and Bobby Kennedy’s raw and naked eulogy speech for Dr. King, Powell has created a fearless literary and political manifesto that is a townhall meeting for an America seemingly at war with its own soul.

Covered by The New York Times, NPR, and Good Morning America, When We Free The World is available on Amazon and Amazon Kindle, and Apple Books


About Kevin

Kevin Powell is one of the most prolific literary, political, cultural, and hip-hop voices in America. He is a poet, journalist, blogger, civil and human rights activist, public speaker, filmmaker, a former two-time candidate for the United States Congress in New York City, and author or editor of 14 books. His writings have appeared in many different publications through the years, including The Nation, British GQ, HuffPost, CNN, The Guardian, The New York Times Style Magazine, The Washington Post, Vibe, Utne Reader, Ebony, Complex, African Voices, The Baffler, NPR, Esquire, The Progressive, and elsewhere. Kevin’s critically acclaimed memoir, The Education of Kevin Powell: A Boy’s Journey into Manhood, is being adapted for the screen. His next book will be a biography of Tupac Shakur, the global pop culture and hip-hop icon. As a speaker Kevin has lectured widely across America and internationally in places like Japan, the United Kingdom, and Nigeria, West Africa; he has also been a visiting scholar at several colleges, including Stanford University, Dillard University, and James Madison University. Kevin lives in New York City, the planet of Brooklyn.



Follow Kevin Powell

 Twitter: @kevin_powell
Instagram: @kevinpowellinbrooklyn




source: Billy Johnson Jr.


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