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The Conversation: How Black Men and Women Can Build Loving, Trusting Relationships
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The Conversation: How Black Men and Women Can Build Loving, Trusting Relationships

4.08  ·  Rating details ·  1,207 ratings  ·  129 reviews
Today, only 34% of African-American children are raised in two-parent households, compared to 85% in 1966. In this book, Hill Harper examines the roots of breakdown in black families, considering the importance of current sexual stereotypes in black American culture.
Hardcover, 268 pages
Published September 8th 2009 by Gotham Books
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4.08  · 
Rating details
 ·  1,207 ratings  ·  129 reviews

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Amy Binkerd
Sep 12, 2012 rated it it was amazing
I was perusing the "bargain books" today and had two classics in my hand. "The Secret Garden" and "Sherlock Holmes:The first 12 original stories." Both for $2.99 a piece. When I came across this one, I read the back cover and quickly put the other 2 back (as I am 1:cheap and 2:coming to the end of my weekly spend money. Dang budget rules!)
Now as you can see by my profile pic, I am as pasty white as they come so why pick up a book about Black relationships? I'll tell you! lol
My husband and I
Kya Publishing (Toronto)
Oct 30, 2012 rated it really liked it
Hill Harper's new book "The Conversation" should be the last book written about black relationships.

It covers all of the topics, the discussions, and the tools needed for readers to move forward in this area, no longer held back by historical, social, and cultural restrictions, perceived or actual.

Released in September of 2009, Harper's third book focuses on "How Black Men and Women can Build Loving, Trusting Relationships" and has the potential to be the definitive word on black love.

Using pers
Nov 08, 2009 rated it it was ok
Shelves: relationships
Harper’s Conversation is harmless. I am exhaling. I can’t remember what it was, but I felt like there was something in the Essence review that made me not want to read it. Then people was all in my ear about The Conversation and since I’m trying to be a relationship researcher and all, I figured I should turn my attention to it. It definitely wasn’t a waste of time, but I’m not going to be re-reading. Besides knowing more about Harper’s relationships, it wasn’t super informative. The only conver ...more
May 05, 2010 rated it liked it
I have to give Hill Harper props for at least attempting to tackle this subject. Black female and male relationships will have you writing volumes that could make Encyclopedia Brittanica jealous. He gets an A for effort, but I really didnt learn anything groundbreaking from "The Conversation".
Yes, marriage is hard, but rewarding work.
Yes, women and men communicate differently, which can cause alot of problems.
Yes, some Black women need to lighten up, smile, and laugh, which will produce a par
Kim Smith
Sep 17, 2009 rated it it was amazing
This is an excellent book and should be in the personal library of every African American. Mr. Harper explores how male/female relationships among African American have devolved into its chaotic and inoperable state as well as what we need to do to restore the cornerstone of our community, the black family. A very interesting read which is as much of a personal journey for the reader as it was for Mr. Harper. I highly recommend!
Jun 12, 2012 rated it really liked it
I enjoyed this book, and I applaud Hill for endeavoring to start the conversation about a very complex issue.
The dynamics of male-female relationships has always intrigued me. Particularly among African-Americans the complexities are varied, and rooted, specifically in this country, in a very tumultuous history. And I agree with Hill in his thinking that the underlying causes for all the confusion, insecurities, uncertainties, selfishness, and misunderstandings are based in fear – fear of reject
Sep 24, 2011 rated it really liked it
I enjoyed this reading this book. I appreciate Hill Harper for putting his feeling out there. It was refreshing to see him put his own misgiving about relationships in the book.

I don't think he was trying to come off as a relationship expert, I think he put many truths out there. The one thing we hate is truth as much as we say we want to hear it. He gave an interesting prospective from a black man's point.

It still amazes me to see how we are quick to judge and criticize when the truth is hitt
Dec 20, 2012 rated it it was amazing
So I have to give Hill credit for aggressively tackling this subject/issue. As a young Black man aspiring to be successful and raise a beautiful Black family, The Conversation has helped me take on a new perspective of our Black people and our community. This is a mass effort. Everyone being accountable to each other. Men and woman. Unfortunately, we fight against everyone's own morals and ethics. Everyone wasn't raised the same way and therefore may not have the same opionions and beliefs about ...more
Sep 25, 2009 rated it really liked it
Easy-to-read book that focused on CONVERSATIONS w/both single and married men and women about romantic relationships. (Not clinical at all, which I find more interesting) Definitely a good read for those who don't have these types of conversations with their mate/friends often. For those of us who remain engaged in understanding how relationships evolve (or dissipate), reading it helps determine if what is said and hear are universal statements.

Hill even opens up about his personal pitfalls whe
Jasmine Holloman
Dec 30, 2014 rated it it was amazing
Hill Harper is one of my favorite author's. His books are always a source of inspiration and wisdom to overcome any situation. The Conversation is no different. I read this book with my boyfriend and even though he is still finishing it up, I believe I learned a great deal about making our relationship stronger. Harper touches on a lot of cliches but the overarching theme is that relationships are hard. They are ALWAYS going to be hard, but the ones that last are the ones built between those w ...more
Nancy Johnson
Jul 16, 2015 rated it really liked it
This is an interesting study on understanding the backstory of and why some think the relationships between Black men and women are so difficult to enter into and sustain.
There are some truths that hit hard, and some info that seem to fit a particular population... like the child-bearing age, upper-middle class population. The people he has "conversations" with, getting their take on particular questions, seem to be very similar in backgrounds. But Harper seems to want to give tidbits on all Bla
Candace Bonner
Mar 13, 2012 rated it liked it
It is great that he wants to open a dialog. He has offered several examples of questions to ask in the company of men and women to get the conversation going.
I have friends that have parties that ask tough questions about relationships as well. I encourage everyone to get involved in the conversation.
Sep 20, 2012 rated it it was amazing
READ IT READ IT READ IT! This book changed my perspective on a lot of things. I feel like this book has helped me to take on a much more mature outlook on relationships with black men. Ahhhhhhh words can't express how great this read was!
Edward Lee
Sep 07, 2010 rated it really liked it
Pretty good, every time I think that a book on marriage from a single man's perspective is not for me - a married man. I turn the page to some deep insight or perspective. Good book thus far.
Sep 14, 2010 rated it really liked it
I love this book.
Dec 30, 2017 rated it it was amazing
I loved the book but I find it interesting that he made a point to highlight is adoration for his black girlfriend Nichole and he said more than once how much he preferred black women over any other race and now, here he is with an Asian woman on his arm. I don't have a problem with relationships between different races...I just think you should watch what you claim you won't do because ya never know. Still he made some great points. The one that stood out most to me is that women should judge m ...more
Cheryl Durham
Nov 18, 2017 rated it really liked it
Poignant and worth the read. Based on interviews with others Harper dives into a conversation about communication among African American men and women. He dissects some of the g old myths and looks for those things that appear to stymie this beautiful relationship. Workin before, during and after bonds are built is essential.
cynthia ojo
Jul 09, 2018 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Must read book

I enjoyed this book and again learned so much about myself. I decided to date again after choosing to be single for three years. This book gives me hope and encouragement. I am challenged to examine my personal history why I think the way I do and what I really want.
Shelbourne Richardson
Dec 11, 2018 rated it it was amazing
This book is for anyone that needs insight and guidance in modern human relationships. Written as if the author is conversing with the reader, there is great wisdom that will help singles in the dating pool and couples preserve their relationship in the long run in this book.
Dec 24, 2018 rated it really liked it
Great Book, with thought provoking content. I learned a lot about me and how I can better communicate. I highly recommend this book and am taking Hill's lead and having a Conversation Party with a few friends.
Evanglish Thomas
Mar 17, 2019 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Very informative and applicable for today’s men and women

I admire Hill Harper’s attempt to indulge men and women to have a honest conversation about who we are and what we want in a companion or marriage. Great read!
Mar 06, 2018 rated it it was amazing
I thoroughly enjoyed this book! Eye opener and clarity of what I already knew!
Sep 25, 2018 rated it it was amazing
This book is a great one for reference and occasionally finds itself on my nightstand 😏.
Kirsten Yasa
Jan 07, 2019 rated it liked it
This was just okay. I appreciate what Hill tries to accomplish, but something’s missing. I highlighted a few things but I can’t say that I’d go back and read again.
Oct 06, 2009 rated it it was amazing
Recommends it for: everyone
The Conversation is a call to the African American community to repair the state of the Black male and female relationship. Hill Harper did a wonderful job addressing the issues we face as a community with our relationships, but not only did he address issues, Hill Harper gave valuable solutions that we can start putting into practice immediately.

I love that the book was not one sided; addressing only the male or female. There was so many nuggets in the book that I cannot name them all, but one
Brandon Montgomery
Jul 15, 2013 rated it it was ok
This book came up in one of my organizations at school and we were only supposed to read the first three chapters. I thought that was a waste of time, so I read it all the way through. The writing was okay, the interviews/questions were fine, but overall, the book suffers from other issues.

First, Harper is not qualified to write this book. I say this on a personal level as well professionally. First, his relationship with (I believe her name was Lauren (it has been a while since I read this)) se
Apr 17, 2012 rated it it was ok
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Oct 13, 2009 rated it really liked it
I've learned that men communicate w/their male friends the same way women communicate w/their female friends. And a big problem w/black male-female relationships is the lack of communication or ineffective communication. Both men and women should realize that their significant other needs the same type of interaction (w/the same vigor) they provide to their "boys" or "girls". There are too many guards up, even when dealing w/the one you love, that prohibit a meaningful bond to develop. Men can b ...more
Feb 25, 2010 rated it it was amazing
This book was beyond amazing. It gave an intimate view on the relationships between African American men and women. It talked about all the things that are common within the lives of black people on an everyday basis and the issues that need to be addressed within our communities. Illustrating these issues and presenting resolutions to these problems in the form of a "conversation" is the best way to get through to a group of people. Speaking to them as if they were your close friends, without i ...more
This book was extremely informative about what black men and women want in relationships, how they view the opposite sex, and how black couples view love, sex, and life.

Hill Harper had a variety of "conversations" with married couples, single people, divorcee`s, fiance`s, and friends who all participated and contributed in his collection of answers. Hill Harper is in search of love, not just any love, but a deep, homegrown love. He is also searching his life to learn more about his fears of lov
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Darian: The Conversation 1 1 Jun 11, 2016 10:49AM  
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Francis Harper, known professionally as Hill Harper, is an American film, television and stage actor, and author. An alumnus of Harvard Law School, he is best known for his portrayal of Dr. Sheldon Hawkes on the CBS drama television series CSI: NY.
“Now this might get me into trouble but I’m just going to write it. Many of my most jaded female friends want a man who has already “arrived” and there’s nothing wrong with that. However, I’ve noticed that if many of these women hold up a mirror to themselves, they would realize that they are still “works in progress,” as well.” 3 likes
“The most common ego identifications have to do with possessions, the work you do, social status and recognition, knowledge and education, physical appearance, special abilities, relationships, personal and family history, belief systems, and often political, nationalistic, racial, religious, and other collective identifications. None of” 3 likes
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