We need to live in an antiracist society and people need to learn to be antiracist and practice antiracism. But I do not believe in your antiracist work if you have not engaged with Black humanity.
—Tarna Burke from the Introduction to You Are Your Best Thing: A Conversation from brenebrown.com
Please join me in wishing activist Tarana Burke and vulnerability advocate Brené Brown a happy book birthday in celebration of their book’s release today ☛YOU ARE YOUR BEST THING: VULNERABILITY, SHAME RESILIENCE, AND THE BLACK EXPERIENCE 🥳 [pub: Random House]. I can’t wait to deep dive into this collection of stories from cultural and literary luminaries like Imani Perry, Laverne Cox, Kiese Lamon, Jason Reynolds and more.
Also, check out the dynamic duo’s interview with Gayle King, that aired yesterday on CBS This Morning.
You Are Your Best Thing Synopsis from Penguin Random House:
It started as a text between two friends.
Tarana Burke, founder of the ‘me too.’ Movement, texted researcher and writer Brené Brown to see if she was free to jump on a call. Brené assumed that Tarana wanted to talk about wallpaper. They had been trading home decorating inspiration boards in their last text conversation so Brené started scrolling to find her latest Pinterest pictures when the phone rang.
But it was immediately clear to Brené that the conversation wasn’t going to be about wallpaper. Tarana’s hello was serious and she hesitated for a bit before saying, “Brené, you know your work affected me so deeply, but as a Black woman, I’ve sometimes had to feel like I have to contort myself to fit into some of your words. The core of it rings so true for me, but the application has been harder.”
Brené replied, “I’m so glad we’re talking about this. It makes sense to me. Especially in terms of vulnerability. How do you take the armor off in a country where you’re not physically or emotionally safe?”
“That’s why I’m calling,” said Tarana. “What do you think about working together on a book about the Black experience with vulnerability and shame resilience?”
There was no hesitation.
Burke and Brown are the perfect pair to usher in this stark, potent collection of essays on Black shame and healing. Along with the anthology contributors, they create a space to recognize and process the trauma of white supremacy, a space to be vulnerable and affirm the fullness of Black love and Black life.