Black Cool: One Thousand Streams of Blackness

Edited by Rebecca Walker. Soft Skull, $14.95 trade paper (224p) ISBN 978-1-59376-417-3
Despite the slenderness of this collection of essays on the zen of cool by several influential cultural visionaries, Walker (Black, White and Jewish) knows how to approach a fashionable theme from all angles. After an informed foreword by historian Henry Louis Gates Jr., the various commentaries on the fundamentals and potential of this African-American cultural export domestically and globally are written by such trendsetters as writer Mat Johnson, performing artist Staceyann Chin, critic Dream Hampton, photographer Dawoud Bey, writer Veronica Chambers, essayist Miles Marshall Lewis, critic Margo Jefferson, fashion maven Michaela Angela Davis, and educator-activist bell hooks. Three of the standouts are Chamber’s “Hunger,” Chin’s “Authenticity,” and hooks’s “Forever,” where elements of the personal give meaning to the topic and touch the reader in a significant way. While Hampton discusses “Audacity” as mastering fear and Bey explains “Swagger” as “a way to reclaim and celebrate viscerally an aspect of self that has historically eroded,” Lewis pays tribute in “Always Evoking” to the sound sorcerer Miles Davis, a musician of the cool sound whose constant mode was change. Walker and her band of scribes are in top form, giving a rich, varied picture of Black cool style at its most frosty. (Feb.)
Reviewed on: 12/12/2011
Release date: 02/01/2012
Show other formats
Open Ebook - 1 pages - 978-1-280-64609-6
Open Ebook - 184 pages - 978-1-59376-472-2
Stay ahead with
Tip Sheet!
Free newsletter: the hottest new books, features and more
Only $18.95/month for Digital Access
or $20.95 for Print+Digital Access!
Only $18.95/month for Digital Access
or $20.95 for Print+Digital Access!
Email Address


Log In Lost Password

PW has integrated its print and digital subscriptions, offering exciting new benefits to subscribers, who are now entitled to both the print edition and the digital editions of PW (online or via our app). For instructions on how to set up your accout for digital access, click here. For more information, click here.

The part of the site you are trying to access is now available to subscribers only. Subscribers: to set up your digital subscription with the new system (if you have not done so already), click here. To subscribe, click here.

Email with questions.

Not Registered? Click here.