cover image We Are Meant to Rise: Voices for Justice from Minneapolis to the World

We Are Meant to Rise: Voices for Justice from Minneapolis to the World

Edited by Carolyn Holbrook and David Mura. Univ. of Minnesota, $18.95 trade paper (224p) ISBN 978-1-5179-1221-5

Twin Cities writers and activists Holbrook (Tell Me Your Names and I Will Testify) and Mura (A Stranger’s Journey) bring together in this urgent anthology 34 essays by BIPOC writers that reflect on race and police violence. Inspired by Holbrook’s discussion series “More Than a Single Story”—which for more than five years has facilitated conversations among writers and activists of color in Minnesota—the essays question what a common American vision means, and draw on the legacy of James Baldwin, as Mura notes: “the question of identity is a question involving the most profound panic.” “I always go back to Baldwin,” Shannon Gibney writes in “All the Stars Aflame,” her contemplation of the white supremacist reaction to the George Floyd protests. Ricardo Levins Morales’s “Four Genies” reflects on the “sheltering in place” mandates, about how communities weather storms together (or don’t), and in the particularly powerful “Didion Dreams,” Said Shaiye shares his experience with mental illness, describing when he once called 911 and told the operator he felt like dying. The power of protest, mourning, and healing showcased is consistently moving. Taken together, these entries make for a powerful and passionate take on a fraught moment. (Nov.)