How the Word Is Passed: A Reckoning with the History of Slavery Across America

Category: Book
By (author): Smith, Clint
Subject:  HISTORY / African American
  NON-FICTION / General
  SOCIAL SCIENCE / Black Studies (Global)
  SOCIAL SCIENCE / Discrimination & Race Relations
  SOCIAL SCIENCE / Ethnic Studies / African American Studies
Publisher: Little, Brown and Company
Published: June 2021
Format: Book-hardcover
Pages: 352
Size: 9.55in x 6.35in x 1.55in
Our Price:
$ 37.00
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Additional Notes

From The Publisher*

Instant #1 New York Times bestseller

Named a Best Book of 2021 by the Washington Post, New York Times, Esquire, GoodReads, SheReads, BookPage, Publishers Weekly, Kirkus, the New York Public Library, and the Chicago Public Library

Longlisted for the National Book Award

Los Angeles Times,
Best Nonfiction Gift

Beginning in his hometown of New Orleans, Clint Smith leads the reader on an unforgettable tour of monuments and landmarks-those that are honest about the past and those that are not-that offer an intergenerational story of how slavery has been central in shaping our nation's collective history, and ourselves.

It is the story of the Monticello Plantation in Virginia, the estate where Thomas Jefferson wrote letters espousing the urgent need for liberty while enslaving more than four hundred people. It is the story of the Whitney Plantation, one of the only former plantations devoted to preserving the experience of the enslaved people whose lives and work sustained it. It is the story of Angola, a former plantation–turned–maximum-security prison in Louisiana that is filled with Black men who work across the 18,000-acre land for virtually no pay. And it is the story of Blandford Cemetery, the final resting place of tens of thousands of Confederate soldiers.

A deeply researched and transporting exploration of the legacy of slavery and its imprint on centuries of American history, How the Word Is Passed illustrates how some of our country's most essential stories are hidden in plain view-whether in places we might drive by on our way to work, holidays such as Juneteenth, or entire neighborhoods like downtown Manhattan, where the brutal history of the trade in enslaved men, women, and children has been deeply imprinted.

Informed by scholarship and brought to life by the story of people living today, Smith's debut work of nonfiction is a landmark of reflection and insight that offers a new understanding of the hopeful role that memory and history can play in making sense of our country and how it has come to be.

Review Quote*Publisher's Weekly, Nonfiction Best Books of 2021
Review Quote*Longlist, Goodreads, Best Nonfiction of 2021
Review Quote*Southern Independent Booksellers Alliance - 2022 Southern Book Prize nonfiction finalist
Review Quote*A New York Times Book Review Editors' Choice
Review Quote*Washington Post, 50 Notable Works of Nonfiction
Review Quote*One of John Green's Two Favorite Books of the Year
Washington Post Best Book to Read in June
Time Best Book of Summer 2021 
The Root's Book You Have to Read This Summer
A Goodreads Hottest New Book of the Season 
One of Buzzfeed's New Books to Add to Your Summer Reading List ASAP
Review Quote*"Suffused with lyrical descriptions and incisive historical details, including Robert E. Lee's ruthlessness as a slave owner and early resistance by Frederick Douglass and W.E.B. Du Bois to the Confederate general's "deification," this is an essential consideration of how America's past informs its present."-Publisher's Weekly
Review Quote*"The Atlantic writer drafts a history of slavery in this country unlike anything you've read before."-Entertainment Weekly
Review Quote*"An important and timely book about race in America."-Drew Faust, Harvard Magazine