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Killing Rage: Ending Racism

4.26  ·  Rating Details  ·  1,416 Ratings  ·  73 Reviews
Killing Rage "Almost everyone's assumption about race will be challenged in this volume. . . . Anyone who is not in denial about rascism will be motivated to work for its demise after reading Killing Rage".--Emerge. Full description
Paperback, 288 pages
Published October 31st 1996 by Penguin Books Ltd (first published 1995)
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J.G. Keely
Jan 26, 2016 J.G. Keely rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
Ultimately misguided, hyperbolic, self-serving, and blinded by bitterness. It is impossible to speak about the author without speaking of her pretension, of her insistence that her pseudonym not be capitalized. She says it is because the author is not important, the name not important. We all know the best way to convince people that you don't consider yourself important is by insisting that you be singled out for special treatment.

Instead of making the author's name transparent, she has instead
Mar 02, 2010 Kristen rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
hooks has a real talent for conveying complex theory in highly-readable prose. In killing rage, she argues convincingly that ignoring race doesn't make one a non-racist person (neither a non-racist white person, nor a person of color free from internalized racism.) Rather if one wants to become a non-racist person, one must commit to confronting and dismantling, consciously and conscientiously, the insidious ways in which white supremacy is institutionalized in our society.
Spicy T AKA Mr. Tea
After watching the George Zimmerman trial, while at the same time working with a disabled African American man and his family who was brutalized by the Rochester Police Department, I needed some inspiration and analysis about race and white-supremacy in Amerikkka. bell hooks offered both in her book killing rage: Ending Racism. Even though the book was written in the mid-1990's, it has so much to offer that is absolutely relevant now.
johnny correa
Apr 19, 2007 johnny correa rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: everyone
This book gave me the vocabulary to finally describe the pain and anger I have felt in my past.
Will Shetterly
May 20, 2012 Will Shetterly rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
The opening essay is very much worth reading, though not for the reasons Bell Hooks offers. Think of her as a Nabokovian unreliable narrator, and it's both sad and hilarious. It's the story of a ticket mix-up on a plane. A white man has a ticket for a seat, and due to some error, a black woman believes the seat is hers, but her ticket says otherwise. To Hooks, all the whites who observe what happens are complicit in racism because they don't ignore the ticket and accept the black woman's word.

Aug 17, 2013 Alexis rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Hooks says, “White rage is acceptable, can be both expressed and condoned, but black rage has no place and everyone knows it” (15). First, I just love her confidence as a writer—and everyone knows it—and second, her position here is important. Black rage needs a place, a public forum. If it is not claimed or re-claimed, as she suggests earlier in the book, then a kind of self-immolation and cultural immolation occurs.
Aug 15, 2015 Chris rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
hooks' influence is widely felt today. This book raises questions and concerns that are still not answered. It isn't easy reading, but then again, very few things worth listening to and thinking about are. Agree or disagree with her, think she is a prophet or a fool, at least she will get you to think and talk.
Mar 14, 2013 Paul rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: non-fiction, politics
An utterly useless book; 270 pages of repetitive crap that blames everything and explains nothing. Hooks constantly refers to the "white supremacist capitalist patriarchy" as the source of all her woes, despite neglecting to provide any real critique of capitalism. I assume she just throws that one in there for good measure. I came to this book expecting to learn something about institutionalised racism and sexism, but instead hooks is content with making shockingly sweeping vague statements suc ...more
May 16, 2008 Owen rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: favorites
Another totally transformative book by bell hooks. The pages of the copy I borrowed were underlined like crazy. The book should just have one big underline under it, and many circles around it, and on the side, a big "YES!!!". Ok that is extreme, I am not that kind of underliner, but so many of the concepts in this book have been enlightening for me.

Here is one quote, explaining the namesake of the book. At some point I'd like to compare this quote with Amber Hollibaugh's description of how she
Nov 24, 2011 Nancy rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I read this book immediately after reading Race Matters by Cornel West - they paired really well and kept my mind in focus and active on matters of discerning where and how racism plays out in the communities I participate in and in the broader society I live and work in.

Just as Race Matters begins with a true real life story of Cornel West's so too King Rage starts with a story that takes place on an airplane for bell hooks. The best way to start - put the reality right out there. The story was
Petter Nordal
Mar 23, 2014 Petter Nordal rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
This is a great book, a truly hopeful book. If you are put off by the first few pages or first few essays, I encourage you to persevere. many of us get so accustomed to racist injustice that we despair of ever seeing and end, and this is precisely why this book is hopeful. sometimes it is clumsy reading, since her insistence on avoiding euphemisms often means using technical or laden terminology, but because she does not get caught up in trying to put things nicely or trying to see the bright si ...more
Sep 17, 2007 SooYoung rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: see below
you should this book if:
you don't think racism exists any more
you don't think there's anything you can do about racism
you think racism and sexism and classism are separate entities
you think black people are always so angry
you think bourgie blacks haven't escaped the racism
you believe the world should be color blind
you don't know why jews and blacks dislike each other
you don't believe in white, patriarchal systems of power
etc etc.
basically, everyone should read this book. mandatory reading.

Nicole Martin
Feb 20, 2008 Nicole Martin rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: anyone and everyone
I haven't read anything by bell hooks that I didn't like, but this one really lit a fire in me. When I first picked up the book I thought the title meant "killing rage" as in to destroy rage, but actually she is explaining and justifying the rage that oppressed folks feel towards their oppressor that makes them want to murder them.
In traditional bell hooks fashion she looks at not just racism, but sexism and class-ism as well.
Randall Wallace
May 22, 2015 Randall Wallace rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Angela Davis and bell hooks are great authors for examining race and racism the way they really should be examined – through their interrelationship to class and gender. After the suppression of the Black Panthers by the FBI’s Cointelpro program, black rage, however justified, became a sacrificial offering to whites. Blacks had to learn to choke down their rage. We still live in a white supremacist state (racism’s strongest weapon is not prejudice but domination) with violence condoned by the st ...more
Jeanette Lukowski
Mar 12, 2014 Jeanette Lukowski rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
A tough, but socially important book to read. We can only change behavior we are willing to acknowledge, after all.
Dec 28, 2012 Justher rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
This work provides a good overview of what it means to have an anti-racist agenda. While every essay in this work is brilliant (with each section building on an idea mentioned in the previous essay), the organization could be tighter. However, as hooks herself explains, the simplicity and clarity in her writing makes her works accessible, which might just be the most important thing in texts that are intended to enlighten diverse audiences. I found myself enjoying the sections on black intellect ...more
Jun 15, 2008 molly rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: women and also everyone
Shelves: favorites
this woman is so smart. i never stopped being impressed, and enthralled by her intelligence. i could imagine that as my understanding of the issues addressed in this book broadens i may not agree with everything she says, but i can't imagine i would stop feeling awed by her ability to address taboo and complex issues head on- with subjectivity, honesty, and big sharp brains.
in portland, as in many desireable cities, there is ongoing gentrification. never having really lived with this before, i h
Feb 11, 2015 Lisa rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
A collection of thought-provoking short essays on how racism intersects with feminism and other issues of identity. The sequence brings the issues closer and closer to home, from anger at someone else's blind sense of entitlement to examining how her own communities treat each other. hooks has a clear and deliberately situated voice, blending academic and vernacular, personal and political. Sometimes I wished for footnotes. I was both inspired by how fresh and alive these questions are, and sadd ...more
Apr 25, 2008 Myriam rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I just recommended this book to a(n Italian) friend who told me she didn't understand US race issues so I thought I would post it here. bell hooks is controversial, to say the least, and some of her books (on love, for example) are all over the place at this stage but a number of her earlier books are thoughtful gems. This is one of them; in it, hooks looks at every day occurrences of racism and how racism affects the recipient. She examines the anger/pain caused by being in the receiving end of ...more
May 06, 2016 Shanice rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
A lot of people said this book was angry but I got more urgency than anger. I think when reading or talking about race people get uncomfortable and hear an indictment out of truth. I found this book to be very challenging to my own thoughts about Blackness and my own class/educational/straight/cis privilege. I've learned new ways to be thinking of how to hold myself accountable and it's reinvigorated my interests in the importance of cultural/media literacy. She offers so many solutions in this ...more
Dec 27, 2010 Graeme rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I've been meaning to read a bit of bell hooks for ages and never quite seemed to get around to it. So thank you Hackney public libraries. I have a feeling that bell hooks has been a bit misunderstood and misrepresented certainly through the 1980s, but I'm no expert. I'm not sure I agree with her seeming insistence that paternalism is exclusively a white American western characteristic and a series of other points, but I do agree with a great deal of her other points and observations, particularl ...more
Jan 25, 2015 Macy rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
It's uncanny that a book which was written in 1995 is still SO relevant all these years later. Reading this book made me pause and reflect on the world around me, but also on how I've been living my life up to this point. While I did not agree with everything she said (some points seemed very radicalized to me), there were nonetheless very profound points that were made and my respect for bell hooks is still great. I'd definitely recommend this book, but I suggest taking notes as you read to go ...more
Chelsey Pennyamon
A sharp critique of the racism/sexism/classism which still exists in America and which is perpetuated not only by rich white males, but members of the black community and women, also.
Unfortunately, hooks undercuts her argument by ascribing to identity politics. While her criticisms are valid, her call for all people to unite is negated by her use of the word "privileged"-- instead of acknowledging that racism, sexism, etc. does not more than superficially benefit anyone, she compares the "most o
Apr 21, 2014 Marthe rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
23 essays from a Black feminist perspective that address a wide spectrum of topics to do with race and racism in the United States: psychological trauma among African Americans, friendship between black women and white women, anti-Semitism and racism, internalized racism in the movies and media etc. She presents a challenge to the patriarchal family model, explaining how it perpetuates sexism and oppression in Black life. She also calls out the tendency of much of mainstream America to conflate ...more
Mar 09, 2015 ACRL added it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: motw
Read by ACRL Member of the Week Cynthia Mari Orozco. Learn more about Cynthia on the ACRL Insider blog.
Alexa Weaver
Feb 01, 2016 Alexa Weaver rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Awesome. A must read for anyone who is (or wants to) pursue the fight against racism and sexism in society.

Hoping to be a better ally in 2016!
Jun 08, 2007 Dot rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: people who like being mad at shit
Here's the thing about bell hooks. I love her. I don't agree with her all the time and I really don't have the... I guess emotional fortitude to be as angry as she is. I mean, I admire it; I just know that I don't have that in me.

This book is a collection of essays where Ms. hooks talks about how being angry at systems of oppression and how our need to internalize and stifle that anger is yet another system of oppression. Unfortunately for angry people, being angry isn't necessarily healthy, eit
Dec 31, 2014 Mark rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
You've got some points bell, but I just disagree with a lot of it. Made me think--that's for sure.
Jan 10, 2016 lee rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
"white supremacist capitalist patriarchy"
Mar 17, 2014 Rarain rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
A must read for all cultures.
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bell hooks (born Gloria Jean Watkins) is an African-American author, feminist, and social activist. Her writing has focused on the interconnectivity of race, class, and gender and their ability to produce and perpetuate systems of oppression and domination. She has published over thirty books and numerous scholarly and mainstream articles, appeared in several documentary films and participated in ...more
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“All our silences in the face of racist assault are acts of complicity.” 78 likes
“There must exist a paradigm, a practical model for social change that includes an understanding of ways to transform consciousness that are linked to efforts to transform structures.” 59 likes
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