The 2017-18 Common Reading Initiative book is How to Be Black by Baratunde Thurston.
How to Be Black is a satirical account of the dynamics of race in the United States, told through the lens of author Baratunde Thurston’s personal story. By interweaving autobiography and the perspectives of a “panel of guests” in the book, Thurston uses humor to relay the complexities, absurdities and consequences of the way race is constructed in our culture.
About the Author
Baratunde Thurston is a futurist comedian, writer, and cultural critic who helped re-launch The Daily Show with Trevor Noah, co-founded Cultivated Wit and the About Race podcast, and wrote the New York Times bestseller How To Be Black. Thurston is a highly sought-after public speaker, television personality, and thought leader who has been part of noteworthy institutions such as Fast Company, TED, the MIT Media Lab, and The Onion.
How to Get Your Copy
Copies of the book will be given with incoming students at Summer Orientation, but if you’re in the neighborhood, you can also stop by the Office of First-Year Experience in Dewey Hall to pick one up. Copies will be available after the end of May.
Get the Book Guide
This guide will help us open the door to positive and productive conversations about race, diversity, and inclusion at Johnson State College and beyond. Click here to download the pdf of the book guide and our guiding touchstones for talking about these issues.