Lindsey Stewart, "The Politics of Black Joy: Zora Neale Hurston and Neo-Abolitionism" (Northwestern UP, 2021)

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What can southern Black joy teach us about agency? What role does refusal have in liberation? What more might there be to root work than resistance? In The Politics of Black Joy: Zora Neale Hurston and Neo-Abolitionism (Northwestern UP, 2021), Lindsey Stewart explores Hurston’s contributions to political theory and philosophy of race to develop a politics of joy that owes much to indifference, refusal, and tactical misrecognition. Contending with white supremacy and countering neo-abolitionist approaches that reduce southern Black life to tales of tragedy, Stewart suggests how a politics of Black joy can broaden our imaginations to think emancipation anew.

Sarah Tyson is an associate professor of philosophy at the University of Colorado, Denver.

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