Begin Again : James Baldwin’s America and Its Urgent Lessons for Today


by Jr., Eddie S. Glaude


by Jr., Eddie S. Glaude | USA
Published 13/01/2022 by Vintage Publishing (Vintage) in the United Kingdom
Paperback | 272 pages

Staff Pick: Catherine

This is a moving, thoughtful book reflecting on James Baldwin’s life and work, and a wonderful companion (or starter) for reading JB’s own writing. Baldwin wrote mostly about the US but the lessons here – about reckoning with terrible histories and how we build equitable, just societies – are deeply relevant to the UK and beyond.


America is at a crossroads. Drawing insight and inspiration from Baldwin’s writings, Glaude suggests we can find hope and guidance through an era of shattered promises and white retrenchment. Seamlessly combining biography with history, memoir and trenchant analysis of our moment, Begin Again bears witness to the difficult truth of race in America.

It is at once a searing exploration that lays bare the tangled web of race, trauma and memory, and a powerful interrogation of what we all must ask of ourselves in order to call forth a more just future.