Nov 28, 2022
It takes a powerful amalgam of dynamics to produce a groundbreaking book. This is what Brandi Collins Dexter, lawyer, researcher, activist, and stand-out nonprofit advocate has achieved with the publication of Black Skinhead: Reflections on Blackness and Our Political Future. She takes on, with curiosity, deep personal investment, and an openness to views she may not share, the reasons for and consequences of the disillusionment of Black voters with the Democratic Party. This sensibility mirrors the rise of a multiracial skinhead movement in England, post-World War II that eventually devolved into racially divisive factions. Her interviews with 50 voters from 18-108, reveal an increasing unease with how the party represents Black interests and whether government can generate solutions to the impacts of the racial wealth gap, student debt and the toll of unlivable wages. Brandi explores how social media, rather than encouraging shared cultural and political aspirations, splinters community and fosters alienation. And she points to the danger of losing a belief in linked fate, as personified by Kanye West, whose identification with white nationalism poses a literal threat to democracy. Let's make this required reading for the nonprofit social change sector.