I will say this first. Clint Smith has written one of the

I will say this first. Clint Smith has written one of the

3/21/2021, 2:39:20 AM
I will say this first. Clint Smith has written one of the best books I have ever read. It is definitely one of the best work of nonfiction getting published this year. All that to say because you need this book. This country needs this book. I mentioned this before but last semester I took a public history class that blew my mind. We talked about monuments, museums, how Americans get their history after they graduate from high school/college, and, most importantly, how this nation tells its history. It was a course that shifted my way of thinking regarding public history spaces and what public history can do to this nation. In Clint Smith’s upcoming book “How The Word Is Passed,” Clint Smith visits a handful of public history locations across the country—from the Monticello plantation to Houston, Texas—in order to reach a reckoning about history and how it’s told and passed (he also visits Senegal in the end). It is a book that not only examines history through these public spaces but provides a reflection from Smith that is extraordinary to read. It is a book that I personally think everyone should read. I wanted to touch upon Smith’s language and his attention to detail because I don’t think I have ever read a nonfiction book with such lyricism in the prose. Some paragraphs within this book are so beautifully structured and written. I literally got chills from Smith’s attention to detail and critical thinking. Sometimes he would focus on small things as the way his subjects talked and sounded to the weather and scenery around him. Other times he would focus his attention on his surroundings and how that contributed to how he experienced this history as well as its relevance to the history. Additionally, I think the strongest parts in this book are the sections where Smith includes his reflections about how these spaces made him feel physically and psychologically. It’s just stunning stunning stunning work that I won’t stop talking about for a long time. This was just a reflection of my time with this book. I’ll write a better review later on but for now, these are my initial thoughts. Thank you @littlebrown #partner for the gifted copy.

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