A bound man: why we are excited about Obama and why he can't win

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Average Rating
Publisher:
Tantor Audio,
Pub. Date:
2008.
Edition:
Unabridged.
Language:
English
Description
In Shelby Steele's beautifully wrought and thoughtprovoking new book, A Bound Man , the award-winning and bestselling author of The Content of Our Character attests that Senator Barack Obama's groundbreaking quest for the highest office in the land is fast becoming a galvanizing occasion beyond mere presidential politics, one that is forcing a national dialogue on the current state of race relations in America. Says Steele, poverty and inequality usually are the focus of such dialogues, but Obama's bid for so high an office pushes the conversation to a more abstract level where race is a politics of guilt and innocence generated by our painful racial history -- a kind of morality play between (and within) the races in which innocence is power and guilt is impotence. Steele writes of how Obama is caught between the two classic postures that blacks have always used to make their way in the white American mainstream: bargaining and challenging. Bargainers strike a "bargain" with white America in which they say, I will not rub America's ugly history of racism in your face if you will not hold my race against me. Challengers do the opposite of bargainers. They charge whites with inherent racism and then demand that they prove themselves innocent by supporting black-friendly policies like affirmative action and diversity. Steele maintains that Senator Obama is too constrained by these elaborate politics to find his own true political voice. Obama has the temperament, intelligence, and background -- an interracial family, a sterling education -- to guide America beyond the exhausted racial politics that now prevail. And yet he is a Promethean figure, a bound man. Says Steele, Americans are constrained by a racial correctness so totalitarian that we are afraid even to privately ask ourselves what we think about racial matters. Like Obama, most of us find it easier to program ourselves for correctness rather than risk knowing and expressing what we truly feel. Obama emerges as a kind of Everyman in whom we can see our own struggle to accept and honor what we honestly feel about race. In A Bound Man , Steele makes clear the precise constellation of forces that bind Senator Obama, and proposes a way for him to break these bonds and find his own voice.The courage to trust in one's own careful judgment is the new racial progress, the "way out" from the forces that now bind us all.
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ISBN:
9781400126033
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Grouped Work ID107ae9c0-77c9-5fe7-36ec-f49c4acd4db8
Grouping Titlebound man why we are excited about obama and why he can t win
Grouping Authorsteele shelby
Grouping Categorybook
Last Grouping Update2020-02-07 20:02:01PM
Last Indexed2020-02-27 06:01:40AM

Solr Details

accelerated_reader_point_value0
accelerated_reader_reading_level0
auth_author2Allen, Richard, 1957-2013.
authorSteele, Shelby.
author2-roleAllen, Richard,1957-2013.|Narrator
hoopla digital.
author_displaySteele, Shelby
detailed_location_boulderOnline Hoopla Collection
display_descriptionFrom the New York Times bestselling and controversial author Shelby Steele comes an illuminating examination of the complex racial issues that confront presidential candidate Barack Obama in his race for the White House, a quest that will be one of those galvanizing occasions that forces a national dialogue on the current state of race relations in America.Steele argues that Senator Obama is caught between two classic postures that blacks have always used to make their way in the white American mainstream: bargaining and challenging. Bargainers strike a "bargain" with white America in which they say, "I will not rub America's ugly history of racism in your face if you will not hold my race against me." Bill Cosby's sitcom in the 1980s was the classic example of bargaining. Obama also sends "bargaining" signals to white America, and whites respond with considerable gratitude-which explains the special aura of excitement that surrounds him.But in order to garner the black vote-which is absolutely necessary for victory in the primaries and the general election-Obama must also posture as a challenger. Challengers are the opposite of bargainers. They charge whites with inherent racism and then demand that they prove themselves innocent by supporting black-friendly policies, such as affirmative action. If whites go along with this-thereby proving their innocence-they are granted absolution by the black challenger. The current black American identity is grounded in challenging. Obama must therefore posture as a challenger to win the black vote. However, challenging threatens Obama's white support. But bargaining threatens his black support. Thus, he is bound. He walks in an impossible political territory where any expression of what he truly feels puts him in jeopardy with one much-needed constituency or another. Only a kind of two-sided political mask, or an "above politics" posture, keeps the wolves at bay.
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Bib IdFormatFormat CategoryEditionLanguagePublisherPublication DatePhysical Description
hoopla:MWT10756368eAudiobookAudio BooksUnabridged.EnglishTantor Audio, 2008.1 online resource (1 audio file (3hr., 30 min.)) : digital.
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subject_facetAfrican Americans -- Public opinion
Obama, Barack
Obama, Barack -- Public opinion
Presidential candidates -- United States
Presidents -- United States -- Election -- 2008
Public opinion -- United States
United States -- Politics and government -- 2001-2009
United States -- Race relations -- Political aspects
title_displayA bound man : why we are excited about Obama and why he can't win
title_fullA bound man : why we are excited about Obama and why he can't win [electronic resource] Steele, Shelby.
title_shortA bound man
title_subwhy we are excited about Obama and why he can't win
topic_facetAfrican Americans
Election
Obama, Barack
Political aspects
Politics and government
Presidential candidates
Presidents
Public opinion
Race relations