Highlighting certain socioeconomic and cultural trends, this exploration discloses the new dynamics shaping contemporary lives of African Americans. Using information from conversations with mavericks within black communities--such as entrepreneurs, artists, scholars, and activists as well as members of both the working and upper classes--this powerful examination gives voice to what the author has deemed post black approaches to business, lifestyles, and religion that are nowhere else reflected as part of black life. The argument states that this new, complex black identity is strikingly different than the images handed down from previous generations and offers new examples of behavior, such as those shown by President Obama, gays and lesbians, young professionals, and black Buddhists. Contending that this new generation feels as unwelcome in traditional churches as in hip-hop clubs, this dynamic provocation dispels myths about current, popular black identity.
As a young journalist covering black life at large, author Ytasha L. Womack was caught unaware when she found herself straddling black culture's rarely acknowledged generation gaps and cultural divides. Traditional images show blacks unified culturally, politically, and socially, united by race at venues such as churches and community meetings. But in the post black era, even though individuals define themselves first as black, they do not necessarily define themselves by tradition as much as by personal interests, points of view, and lifestyle. In Post Black: How a New Generation Is Redefining African American Identity, Womack takes a fresh look at dynamics shaping the lives of contemporary African Americans. Although grateful to generations that have paved the way, many cannot relate to the rhetoric of pundits who speak as ambassadors of black life any more than they see themselves in exaggerated hip-hop images. Combining interviews, opinions of experts, and extensive research, Post Black will open the eyes of some, validate the lives of others, and provide a realistic picture of the expanding community.
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