One of the segments I’m most proud of in this manhood development program are our book studies. We’ve wrapped up the 2nd year of our literacy and historical study initiative, and I believe our young bros were enlightened and inspired by the texts we read. The first year we started this, we read The Autobiography of Malcolm X as told to Alex Haley, and during this most recent school year, 2012-13, we finished Narratives in the Life of Fredrick Douglass. And throughout the year, we read texts about Fred Hampton, a little of the Willie Lynch letter, and “What to the Slave is the 4th of July” by Fredrick Douglass.
Because I want to make this a yearly initiative, I’m always on the hunt for new material for the next book study. I look for books that are empowering, but I also look for titles that they can relate to on a historical and cultural level. What I really want them to get from the titles I choose is a deep understanding of history and social nuances, the perspective of the author or main protagonist the book is written about (maybe even the antagonists, too), and hopefully something they can take from it for personal growth.
So here are some titles I’m considering for the fall semester of the next school year: (I plan on finishing the book by December and starting another by January.)
I’m at a lost as to what other books I should consider. That’s where you come in at…comment with your suggestions.