“hooks’s books help us not only to decolonize our minds, souls, and bodies; on a deeper level, they touch our lives.” —Cornel West
More than two decades before Black Lives Matter and the #MeToo movement roiled America, bell hooks was declaring that abolishing racism and eradicating sexism must go hand in hand. In Killing Rage, one of our premier cultural and social critics brings the Black feminist’s voice to bear on this country’s public discourse on race, redressing the historical shunting of women’s writing in this sphere to the side. In incisive essays, hooks addresses the wide spectrum of topics dealing with race and racism in the United States: friendship between Black women and white women; psychological trauma among African Americans; and internalized racism in movies and the media. hooks tackles the bitter difficulties of racism by envisioning a world without it, sharing a vision where “killing rage”—the fierce anger of Black people stung by repeated instances of everyday racism—offers not only a wellspring of love and strength, but also a realistic catalyst for positive change.
This seminal book is one Americans need today if we’re to remain united tomorrow.
“An angry book that pulls no punches…. Her frankness and willingness to face up to the divisive issues that refuse to go away make her a voice to be reckoned with in the debate on race in America.” —The New York Review of Books
bell hooks, born Gloria Jean Watkins in 1952, was an American author who used lowercase as both an homage to her maternal great-grandmother and an attempt to keep readers’ focus where it belonged: on her work. When she died in 2021, hooks left behind a lifetime of thought that was decades ahead of its time. In the heyday of feminism, when the movement claimed to represent all women equally, hooks revealed in Ain’t I a Woman—written when she was only nineteen—how the specific life experiences of Black women were being marginalized.
She never lost this pioneering spirit, bringing it to bear on more than thirty books of literary criticism, children’s fiction, poetry, and autobiography, including Killing Rage: Ending Racism, Bone Black: Memories of Girlhood, Wounds of Passion: A Writing Life, Remembered Rapture: The Writer at Work, Feminism Is for Everybody: Passionate Politics, Where We Stand: Class Matters, Communion: The Female Search for Love and the New York Times bestseller All About Love: New Visions.
A professor of English, African and Afro-American studies, American literature, and women’s studies, hooks taught at USC, Yale, among other institutions, including Berea College in her home state of Kentucky, where the bell hooks center was established to honor her work. Winner of the American Book Award in 1991 for Yearning: Race, Gender, and Cultural Politics, a 2000 nominee for the NAACP’s Image Award, a 2018 inductee into Kentucky Writers Hall of Fame, and one of Time’s 100 Women of the Year in 2020, hooks left her mark in every field she entered.
“Her books help us not only to decolonize our minds, souls, and bodies; on a deeper level, they touch our lives.” —Cornel West
“Almost everyone's assumptions about race will be challenged in this volume . . . Anyone who is not in denial about racism will be motivated to work for its demise after reading Killing Rage.” —Emerge
“. . . Anyone who is not in denial about racism will be motivated to work for its demise after reading Killing Rage.” —Emerge
“An angry book that pulls no punches . . . Her frankness and willingness to face up to the divisive issues that refuse to go away make her a voice to be reckoned with in the debate on race in America.” —The New York Review of Books