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Natives: Race and Class in the Ruins of Empire - The Sunday Times Bestseller Hardcover – 17 May 2018
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Natives ranges widely across history and contemporary politics ... a book with much to say (Guardian)
Akala is at his best destroying the comfortable myths that are invoked by white fragility to downplay attempts to correct the historical record ... Akala makes it clear that he is not brimming with optimism. But reading Natives - witnessing the kind of disruptive, aggressive intellect that a new generation is closely watching - I can't help but be just that (Afua Hirsch Guardian)
A history lesson of the kind you should get in school but don't ... This is a searing, thought-provoking book (Stylist)
A book bristling with intelligence and insight (Irish Times)
In personalised chapters covering the police, education and identity, politics, sexual objectification and the far right, he confronts the issues of race and class at the heart of the legacy of Britain's racialised empire in this fierce and articulate polemic. (The Bookseller)
The bestselling modern polemic on race in the UK, from the MOBO-award winning musician and outspoken political commentator, Akala.See all Product description
From the Publisher
A searing modern polemic from musician and political commentator, Akala
From the first time he was stopped and searched as a child, to the day he realised his mum was white, to his first encounters with racist teachers - race and class have shaped Akala's life and outlook. In this unique book he takes his own experiences and widens them out to look at the social, historical and political factors that have left us where we are today.
Covering everything from the police, education and identity to politics, objectification and the far right, Natives will speak directly to British denial and squeamishness when it comes to confronting issues of race and class that are at the heart of the legacy of Britain's racialised empire.
Akala is a hip-hop artist, writer and social entrepreneur, as well as the co-founder of The Hip-Hop Shakespeare Company.
With an extensive global touring history, Akala has appeared at numerous festivals both in the UK and internationally, and has led innovative projects in the arts, education and music across South East Asia, Africa, India, Australia and New Zealand.
Akala has also appeared on Channel 4, ITV, MTV, Sky Arts and the BBC promoting his music and poetry, and speaking on wide-ranging subjects from music, race, youth engagement, British/African-Caribbean culture and the arts, with numerous online lectures and performances that have millions of views on YouTube.
More recently known for his compelling lectures and journalism - he has written for the Guardian, Huffington Post and the Independent, and spoken for the Oxford Union and TEDx - Akala has gained a reputation as one of the most dynamic and articulate talents in the UK.
I was not born with an opinion of the world but it clearly seemed that the world had an opinion of people like me.
I did not know what race and class supposedly were but the world taught me very quickly.
I did not particularly want to spend a portion of a lifetime studying these issues, it was not among my ambitions as a child, but I was compelled upon this path very early.
I knew that my experiences were significant but I was not yet sure how to tease meaning from them.
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History is written by the victor, but this account really shines a light on the brutal reality of empire and how it has shaped society as a whole.
"Power concedes nothing without demand or motive"
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