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Yearning: Race, Gender, and Cultural Politics

4.19  ·  Rating details ·  560 ratings  ·  25 reviews
bell hook's fourth book crosses disciplinary boundaries in major debates on postmodern theory, cultural criticism, and the politics of race and gender. She values postmodernism's insights while warning that the fashionable infatuation with "discourse" about "difference" is dangerously detachable from the struggle we must all wage against racism, sexism, and cultural imperi ...more
Paperback, 248 pages
Published July 1st 1999 by South End Press (first published November 29th 1990)
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Average rating 4.19  · 
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 ·  560 ratings  ·  25 reviews


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Cameron
Sep 06, 2013 rated it really liked it
I just wanna sit down with bell hooks and ask her what she thinks about stuff
Michael
Jul 10, 2016 rated it really liked it
Recommends it for: #blacklivesmatter, postmodernists, University students
Recommended to Michael by: Sally Cloninger or Lynn DeDanaan
I suspect that this would be a tricky book to review at the best of times – and these are not the best of times for trying to appraise a radical black feminist writer talking about the system of white supremacy in the post-Civil-Rights United States of America. I recall that I purchased this book for a class around the time it was published, but didn’t wind up reading it until five or six years later (I think it wound up dropped from the class for time, not that I failed to do the assigned readi ...more
cubbie
Jul 04, 2007 rated it really liked it
(san francisco public library copy)

"Such appropriation happens again and again. It takes the form of constructing African-American culture as though it exists solely to suggest new aesthetic and political directions white folks might move in."

&

"Until black men can face the reality that sexism empowers them despite the impact of racism in their lives, it will be difficult to engage in meaningful dialogue about gender. Listening to black men talk about their social reality, one often hears narrati
...more
Dominic
Jul 08, 2012 rated it it was amazing
While I had previously read a couple of these essays in anthologies before, the bulk of this book was new to me. And alas, it could be the consummate bell hooks experience. This is an extremely balanced collection of essays whose content was both affirming of many of the thoughts I'd already been harboring and challenging me to go even further. Yearning proves the extent bell hooks has had on me as an educator, a thinker, and a feminist.

I also strongly recommend hooks' video, Cultural Criticism
...more
Chris
Jan 26, 2011 rated it it was amazing
It's astonishing, really, that I got to this point in my life without reading bell hooks. These essays are funny, incisive, and surprisingly timely for being twenty-five years old. I especially enjoyed her reflections on Malcolm X as specifically a religious seeker, which I'll assign whenever I next teach the Autobiography, and her critiques of Do The Right Thing and Der Himmel über Berlin, which I wish I'd read after I saw the movies in high school.
Annapurna Barry
Feb 26, 2012 rated it really liked it
Extremely intelligent writing. Particularly interested in the idea of reclaiming the home, as an act of resistance. An innovative look at the issue of race.
Bryan Cebulski
Jun 15, 2016 rated it it was amazing
Academic writing that connects popular culture to critical theory is honestly my favorite form of writing. bell hooks offers some beautiful and profound material here.
Spicy T AKA Mr. Tea
Another wonderful anthology by bell hooks. I picked this one up originally because a) I hadn't read it and b) I needed a voice of wisdom and thoughtfulness at the time. It took me some time to get through it, but I did. Some of the essays I got right into and really spoke to me. Others I had a hard time with. Though, honestly, I don't think there's an essay in here without pencil marks. hooks always has keen insights into culture, politics, race, and feminism. She's a bedrock author for me. Her ...more
Arda
May 31, 2017 rated it really liked it
hooks is awesome. Some notes from thesis:

Politics of location constrain people into distinct positions such as race, class, and gender, and politics of articulation, correspondingly, sets the ideology by which to function and recount alternative voices, and “negotiate one’s political self” (hooks, 1990, p. 191).

The positionality of being on the margin can therefore bring forth new alternatives – and can work toward shifting the status quo (hooks, 1990). It is in marginalization where diverse ide
...more
Alara
*I only read “Choosing the Margin as the Space of Radical Openness” and “Postmodern Blackness”
J
Dec 16, 2016 rated it really liked it
I wept because of what I read, and then I wept because there are so many worlds to explore, and I will never visit them, or get more than a passing acquaintance with them. And yet they are so very real, and so very important. Much more important than I am.

One of the strengths of Yearning for a reader new to the subject (though one moderately familiar with critical theory and the outline of at least parts of some versions of American history) is that it flits around, both between and within chapt
...more
Leonardo
Dec 17, 2015 marked it as to-keep-reference
Como dice bell hooks, en la mejor práctica radical posmodernista, una política de las diferencias incorporará los valores y las voces de los desplazados, los marginales, los explotados y los oprimidos.

Imperio Pág.109
...more
Emily
Jun 29, 2007 rated it really liked it
Recommends it for: people who like to or need to think critically about our country
Shelves: booksofthepast
bell hooks is amazing. In this books, as with all her others, she engages social and political issues of our time through a lens of experience and wisdom. I heard her speak and felt like she was a woman I could learn from for fifty years and she'd still have things to teach me. Read her books, people.
Nalim
May 21, 2015 rated it it was amazing
"bell hook's fourth book crosses disciplinary boundaries in major debates on postmodern theory, cultural criticism, and the politics of race and gender. She values postmodernism's insights while warning that the fashionable infatuation with "discourse" about "difference" is dangerously detachable from the struggle we must all wage against racism, sexism, and cultural imperialism."
Rekha
Feb 13, 2008 rated it it was amazing
I have a copy of this book from the mid-90s, when my friend D and I decided to read all of bell hooks' work all in a row, and I wrote a book of my own in the margins of it. I love looking at what I thought of it then.
Estelle McInnis
Jun 19, 2013 rated it really liked it
a very honest and personable critical dialogue for individuals yearning for postmodern critical black consciousness. This collection easily demonstrates Hooks's theoretical capacity for cultural analysis.
Cmoselle
Feb 15, 2009 rated it really liked it
Shelves: women-studies
Anyone interested in exploring feminist theory should definitely pick up one of bell hooks' works!
Monica
Feb 10, 2012 rated it it was amazing
bell hooks never ceases to soothe my soul! A beautiful and thoughtful look at race, gender, and politics.
Ryan Wilson
Dec 03, 2011 rated it it was amazing
If you're ready to challenge yourself about white supremacy and patriarchy in American culture, pick this up. It's a slow read, but you won't put it down unchanged.
Michael Kage
May 20, 2012 rated it really liked it
Shelves: philosophy, sociology
Simply awesome. I couldn't put it down!
Lev
Aug 14, 2007 rated it it was amazing
How not to surrender your voice within the confines of the academy. Taught me a lot about renewal and resistance, and the power of language.
Katie
Feb 06, 2008 rated it really liked it
I reviewed this book when I was in grad school.
Jacob
Sep 04, 2012 rated it liked it
Shelves: 2012
I shouldnt have to vouch for Bell Hooks, the thinker, as she is seminal, but she leaves much to be desired in style.
Fadoua ϟ
''PostModern Blackness''
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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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There are many ways to take action against racism. Reading in order to learn more about oppression and how to oppose it is just one of those ways...
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