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Rock My Soul

Rock My Soul

Black People and Self-Esteem

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In Rock My Soul, world-renowned scholar and visionary bell hooks takes an in-depth look at one of the most critical issues facing African Americans: a collective wounded self-esteem that has prevailed from slavery to the present day.
Why do so many African Americans -- whether privileged or poor, urban or suburban, young or old -- live in a state of chronic anxiety, fear, and shame?
In Rock My Soul, hooks gets to the heart and soul of the African-American identity crisis, offering critical insight and hard-won wisdom about what it takes to heal the scars of the past, promote and maintain self-esteem, and lay down the roots for a grounded community with a prosperous future.
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  • Washington Square Press | 
  • 240 pages | 
  • ISBN 9780743456067 | 
  • January 2004
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Read an Excerpt

Chapter One

Healing Wounded Hearts

Self-esteem is not a sexy term. For many folks it conjures up images of self-help issues that were popular "back in the day." Indeed, in our nation public talk about self-esteem was at its highest in the sixties. Then the United States, one of the most powerful and wealthy nations in the world, was producing citizens who were simply discontent with their lot in life, who saw themselves as failures. Many of these individuals had come from upper-class backgrounds, were educated at the best schools, prospered in jobs and careers, moved in elite social circles, and yet found themselves unable to... see more

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