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Tsitsi Dangarembga appears in court this week, just days after her novel This Mournable Body was shortlisted for the 2020 Booker Prize. Read more about her July protest during a government crackdown in Zimbabwe here

Just Us

An American Conversation
Claudia Rankine
As everyday white supremacy becomes increasingly vocalized with no clear answers at hand, how best might we approach one another? Claudia Rankine, without telling us what to do, urges us to begin the discussions that might open pathways through this divisive and stuck moment in American history.

Just Us is an invitation to discover what it takes to stay in the room together, even and especially in breaching the silence, guilt, and violence that follow direct addresses of whiteness. Rankine’s questions disrupt the false comfort of our culture’s liminal and private spaces—the airport, the theater, the dinner party, the voting booth—where neutrality and politeness live on the surface of differing commitments, beliefs, and prejudices as our public and private lives intersect.

This brilliant arrangement of essays, poems, and images includes the voices and rebuttals of others: white men in first class responding to, and with, their white male privilege; a friend’s explanation of her infuriating behavior at a play; and women confronting the political currency of dying their hair blond, all running alongside fact-checked notes and commentary that complements Rankine’s own text, complicating notions of authority and who gets the last word.      

Sometimes wry, often vulnerable, and always prescient, Just Us is Rankine’s most intimate work, less interested in being right than in being true, being together.
 

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$30.00
ISBN
978-1-64445-021-5
Format
Hardcover
Publication Date
Pages
360
Trim Size
6 x 9
Claudia Rankine’s Citizen changed the conversation—Just Us urges all of us into it
 

About the Author

Claudia  Rankine
Credit: John Lucas
Claudia Rankine is the author of Citizen: An American Lyric and four previous books, including Don’t Let Me Be Lonely: An American Lyric. Her work has appeared recently in the Guardian, the New York Times Book Review, the New York Times Magazine, and the Washington Post. She is a chancellor of the Academy of American Poets, the winner of the 2014 Jackson Poetry Prize, and a contributing editor of Poets & Writers. She received a MacArthur Fellowship in 2016. Rankine is the Frederick Iseman Professor of Poetry at Yale University.

http://claudiarankine.com/
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Upcoming Events

VIRTUAL: Claudia Rankine in conversation with Viet Thanh Nguyen on JUST US: AN AMERICAN CONVERSATION, presented by Live Talks Los Angeles

Date:
Location:
Live Talks Los Angeles in Los Angeles, CAview map
6:00 PM Pacific / 8:00 PM Central / 9:00 PM Eastern. This event will be pre-recorded and broadcast on the Live Talks Los Angeles YouTube channel and Facebook page. This event is free and open to the public with registration required. A $36 ticket + signed book bundle is also available for purchase. Register and purchase copies of Just Us: An American Conversation here

VIRTUAL: Claudia Rankine on JUST US: AN AMERICAN CONVERSATION, presented by Harvard Book Store

Date:
Location:
Harvard Book Store in Cambridge, MAview map
4:00 PM Pacific / 6:00 PM Central / 7:00 PM Eastern. This event will be broadcast live via Zoom. Free and book bundle ticket options are available and can be purchased here. Copies of Just Us: An American Conversation can be purchased from Harvard Book Store

VIRTUAL: Claudia Rankine in conversation with Kerri Miller on JUST US: AN AMERICAN CONVERSATION, presented by Talking Volumes and Minnesota Public Radio

Date:
Location:
Talking Volumes in view map
5 PM Pacific / 7 PM Central / 8 PM Eastern. This event will be broadcast live via Zoom. Tickets are offered on a pay-what-you-can model, with price points at $20, $10, $5, and free. Tickets go on sale starting Tuesday, September 1st at 12 PM Central and can be purchased here. Copies of Just Us: An American Conversation are available for sale through Magers & Quinn Booksellers

VIRTUAL: Claudia Rankine in conversation with Eula Biss on JUST US: AN AMERICAN CONVERSATION, presented by Chicago Humanities Festival

Date:
Location:
Chicago Humanities Festival in Chicago, ILview map
5:00 PM Pacific / 7:00 PM Central / 8:00 PM Eastern. This event will be broadcast on YouTube Live. Part of The Esther S. Saks Lecture Series: Culture, Curiosity & Commitment. Ticket options include a pay-what-you-can ticket or a ticket + book bundle option. Tickets go on sale on September 1 and can be purchased here. Copies of Just Us: An American Conversation are available for sale from Seminary Co-op

VIRTUAL: Claudia Rankine on JUST US: AN AMERICAN CONVERSATION, presented by Seattle Arts and Lectures

Date:
Location:
Seattle Arts & Lectures in Seattle, WAview map
7:30 PM Pacific / 9:30 PM Central / 10:30 PM Eastern. Part of the Women You Need To Know series. This event will be pre-recorded and broadcast via Zoom. Tickets range from $42 - $132 and can be purchased here. Copies of Just Us: An American Conversation are available from Third Place Books.

VIRTUAL: Claudia Rankine in conversation with Dr. Lauren Michele Jackson, presented by PEN Out Loud

Date:
Location:
PEN Out Loud in view map
5:00 PM Pacific / 7:00 PM Central / 8:00 PM Eastern. Co-presented by PEN America, Strand Book Store, and Scripps Presents. Broadcast live via Crowdcast. Tickets are $20 for general admission, or $35 for a ticket + book bundle. The first 100 general admission tickets will include a Strand tote bag. The first 300 ticket + book bundle purchased will include a signed bookplate. Purchase tickets here. Copies of Just Us: An American Conversation are available for sale from Strand Book Store. 

VIRTUAL: Claudia Rankine in conversation with Stephen M. Best on JUST US: AN AMERICAN CONVERSATION, presented by City Arts and Lectures

Date:
Location:
City Arts & Lectures in San Francisco, CAview map
5 PM Pacific / 7 PM Central / 8 PM Eastern. This event benefits 826 Valencia College Scholarships. This event will be broadcast live via Zoom. Tickets are $29 and can be purchased here

VIRTUAL: Claudia Rankine on JUST US: AN AMERICAN CONVERSATION, presented by Dallas Art Museum

Date:
Location:
Dallas Art Museum in view map
5 PM Pacific / 7 PM Central / 8 PM Eastern. Part of Arts & Letters Live. Tickets range from $10 - $42 and can be purchased here

VIRTUAL: Claudia Rankine in conversation with Terrance Hayes, presented by the Library Foundation of Los Angeles

Date:
PDT
Location:
Library Foundation of Los Angeles in Los Angeles, CAview map
5:00 PM Pacific / 7:00 PM Central / 8:00 PM Eastern. Moderated by Dawn Lundy Martin.

Praise

  • “[Just Us is] a brilliant and timely examination of whiteness in America. This consciousness-raising, bravura combination of personal essays, poems, photographs, and cultural commentary works on so many levels and is a skyscraper in the literature on racism.”Christian Science Monitor
  • “Claudia Rankine has once again written a book that feels both timely and timeless, and an essential part of the conversations all Americans are having (or should be having) right now.”—Refinery29
  • “Rankine presents another arresting blend of essays and images, perfectly attuned to this long-overdue moment of racial reckoning. . . .  [Analyzing] the overwhelming power of whiteness in everyday interaction . . . Rankine once again opens a literary window into the Black experience, for those willing to look in.”Booklist, starred review
     
  • “An incisive, anguished, and very frank call for Americans of all races to cultivate their ‘empathetic imagination’ in order to build a better future.”Publishers Weekly, starred review
     
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