Stamped From the Beginning: The Definitive History of Racist Ideas in America by Ibram X. Kendi (Bold Type Books, 2016) is a history that is most timely as people across the country are ready and even eager to learn more about a system of racial oppression that has been woven through the fabric of the United States from its beginnings. Kendi distinguishes between three threads of segregationist, assimilationist, and antiracist ideas that have been interacting with and reacting against one another over the past 4 centuries. His thesis throughout is that racist ideas do not create racism, but that powerful interests desiring to exercise supremacy over others have created racist ideas in order to justify the advancing of those interests. It is a new way of seeing the sources of racism, with major implications for how we can best go about dismantling the architecture of white supremacy. I commend for all who want to take seriously our racial justice struggles.
His Truth Is Marching On: John Lewis and the Power of Hope by Jon Meacham, with an afterword by John Lewis, (Random House, 2020) is being released August 25, and I have pre-ordered it to read this biography of an inspiring life, animated by a deep faith in Jesus Christ and a strong sense of following Him on the paths of righteousness. I look forward to learning more about the story of John Lewis and how the Gospel undergirded this disciple both to follow and to lead.