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Book Blog - Likely Stories, by Keir Graff - Booklist Online

Likely Stories

A Booklist Blog
Keir Graff and editors from Booklist's adult and youth departments write candidly about books, book reviewing, and the publishing industry

Archive for the 'Minority Report' Category

Fri, December 6th, 2013
Minority Report: Knowing Mandela Was the Real Deal
Posted by: Vanessa Bush

My oldest son, now an adult, was a toddler when Nelson Mandela was released after 27 years imprisoned on Robben Island. I held my squirming son in my lap as I watched the historic occasion and tried to get him to watch, too. He was bored and distracted; I was stunned and mesmerized. Nelson Mandela […]


Tue, November 5th, 2013
Be Careful Reading Brain Scans–and Books on the Subject
Posted by: Vanessa Bush

I’m as intrigued as anyone with science and technology that seems to open us up to understand the mysteries of our bodies, our brains, our genes. I was listening to an interview recently about the pros and cons of women of Jewish heritage learning about their genetic propensity for breast cancer and, in the funny […]


Fri, October 18th, 2013
Minority Report: Ward’s Tender Portrait Defies Stereotypes
Posted by: Vanessa Bush

Part of what makes Men We Reaped by Jesmyn Ward so moving, beyond the awful personal loss of five people close to her in four years, is the haunting notion that the small town closeness she describes is what was lost when so many black families left the South during the Great Migration. What the […]


Tue, February 21st, 2012
Could Coming Apart Pull Together Social Policy on Poor?
Posted by: Vanessa Bush

I’ve been listening with keen interest to interviews with Charles Murray, author of Coming Apart: The State of White America, 1960-2010. In the last few weeks, he’s been interviewed by Robert Siegel of All Things Considered and Tom Ashbrook of On Point, both on NPR. In Coming Apart, Murray observes that the current generation of […]


Mon, October 24th, 2011
For Anita Hill, Serenity is the Best Revenge
Posted by: Vanessa Bush

It’s been 20 years since Anita Hill had the temerity to challenge the U.S. Supreme Court nomination of Clarence Thomas. It took a lot of nerve for her to come forth with allegations of sexual harassment against a man who was lined up to be the second African American male to serve on the Supreme […]


Mon, October 3rd, 2011
Elizabeth and Hazel Show Unsentimentalized Complexity of Race Relations
Posted by: Vanessa Bush

Like most black Americans of the civil rights generation, I recognize the iconic photograph of Elizabeth Eckford in 1957 as she was taunted and threatened by white hecklers on her first day of school — the first day of school for nine black students at the newly desegregated Little Rock (Arkansas) Central High School. The first […]


Mon, July 18th, 2011
Minority Report: Revisiting Malcolm X in the “post-racial” age
Posted by: Vanessa Bush

The Autobiography of Malcolm X, by Alex Haley, is the most stolen book in American libraries, according to an attendee at a recent symposium on Manning Marable’s Malcolm X: A Life of Reinvention. That declaration of the popularity of Haley’s book, and the iconic status of the book and its subject, was reportedly based on […]


Tue, June 28th, 2011
Minority Report: Broader Perspectives for Young Black Men
Posted by: Vanessa Bush

With the frenzy of another school year ended, I’ve had the time to reflect on the past year – one where I was fortunate enough to be able to send both my sons abroad. The 8th grader went to Barcelona with his Spanish class, the college senior went to Tanzania in a semester abroad program. […]


Tue, May 24th, 2011
Minority Report: Gang Reflections
Posted by: Vanessa Bush

Some fifty years and nearly twenty miles from the site of operation of the notorious Chicago gang the Almighty Black P Stone Nation, nearly sixty people gathered recently to discuss the book of same title that examines the rise and fall of that gang and its leader. The setting was the main library in Oak […]


Mon, February 14th, 2011
Minority Report: Teaching America Important Lessons on Public Education
Posted by: Vanessa Bush

However a person might feel about the great debate regarding public school reform (vouchers, charters, etc.), the idealism – at least – of Teach for America seems to be broadly admired. It’s regarded as the education equivalent of the Peace Corps. During the holiday season I had the pleasure of meeting one of its members, […]





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