BLACK IMAGINATION/OF COLOR DOUBLE PACK
In Of Color, award-winning poet Jaswinder Bolina meditates on “how race,” as he puts it, “becomes metaphysical”: the cumulative toll of the microaggressions and macro-pressures lurking in the academic market, on the literary circuit, in the dating pool, and on the sidewalks of any given U.S. city. Looking at issues of immigration, assimilation, class, the political utility of art, and what it means to belong to a language and a nation that brand you as other. In Black Imagination, viral curator Natasha Marin gathers the voices of Black children, Black youth, LGBTQ+ Black folks, unsheltered Black folks, incarcerated Black folks, neurodivergent Black folks, as well as differently-abled Black folks, and more, and asks them to visualize a world where they feel loved, safe, and valued. The chorus of Black voices works like an incantation of origin, healing, and imagination.
Together these works paint a picture of contemporary America, and the future we could live in that is both clear-eyed and hopeful, bleak and optimistic, bold and expansive while deeply intimate. These beautiful hardcover books are required reading for today’s world.
Praise for Black Imagination
“Black Imagination reads like a survival guide with a sense of humor as deep as its sense of history, a literary oasis for black people fed up with the white gaze.”
“Our bodies and actions are under external control, but the well-spring of rebellion is our own imagination. In Black Imagination, Natasha Marin shows us how to free our imagining — as a first step toward freeing ourselves.”
“Black Imagination is somehow as innovatively utopic as it is sincerely soulful. I’ve never felt the physical feeling of pages melting in my hands or chapters folding themselves into squadrons of black airplanes flying to freedom because I’ve never experienced an art object like Black Imagination. It is exquisite art in action.”
—Kiese Laymon, author of Heavy
Praise for Of Color
“(T)hese companionable essays squeeze one’s arm with the firm, fraternal pressure of a trustworthy adviser.”
—Ron Slate, On the Sea Wall
“Eminently readable… entrusts us with an honest conversation that we all should be having with each other.”
“Jaswinder Bolina’s insightful, raw and honest collection of brilliant essays illuminate the joys and pains of being a specific person Of Color and through his unique lens we also come to understand the universal ongoing story of America.”
—Wajahat Ali, author of The Domestic Crusaders and contributor to CNN and the New York Times
“Lyrically intelligent, exceptionally alert… A crucial addition to the growing canon of works about race in contemporary America.”
—Sarah Manguso, author of Ongoingness and 300 Arguments