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Writer Mychal Denzel Smith Has ‘Got The Whole World Watching’46:45
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With guest host Jane Clayson.

Growing up black in America, now.  Activist and columnist Mychal Denzel Smith on his book “Invisible Man, Got The Whole World Watching.”

Author Mychal Denzel Smith. (Courtesy Nation Books)
Author Mychal Denzel Smith. (Courtesy Nation Books)

The LGBT community in Orlando is fighting back against hate and remembering the victims of the Pulse night club shooting. BuzzFeed News reporter Dominic Holden will share their stories with us. Later in the hour, activist and writer Mychal Denzel Smith on his new book about growing up black in America: "Invisible Man, Got the Whole World Watching." This hour On Point, back to Orlando---and a big new memoir. — Jane Clayson 

Guest

Mychal Denzel Smith, writer and author. Author of the new book, "Invisible Man, Got the Whole World Watching: A Young Black Man’s Education." Contributing writer for the Nation. Knobler Fellow at the Nation Institute. (@mychalsmith)

From The Reading List

The Nation:  There Is No Truly Anti-Racist Presidential Candidate — "I continue to believe that election season brings out the worst in everyone. Uncritical support for deeply compromised politicians turns everyone into a hypocrite, hedging and justifying when their chosen candidate is caught being immoral or unethical, while simultaneously attempting to vilify their opponent for their lack of morals and ethics. Meanwhile, the complex issues and debates that shape our national politics get reduced to talking points and sound bites, points to be earned or lost in the latest polls. It is at once all-consuming, deeply boring, and important—insofar as electoral politics can produce any real change."

New York Times: The Intellectual in Air Jordans -- "Mychal Denzel Smith isn’t operating a branch of Niketown from his tiny bedroom in Bushwick, Brooklyn. It only looks that way. There are two over-the-door shoe organizers full of sneakers, and a metal retail display rack against the wall can’t fit another pair. A column of unopened Nike shoe boxes teeters over the bed, reaching nearly as high as the bookshelf next to it that is crammed with classics of black literature past and present, like 'Notes of a Native Son' by James Baldwin, and 'How to Slowly Kill Yourself and Others in America' by Kiese Laymon."

Ebony: Seeking Affirmation as a “Good Black Man” is a Bad Idea — "The most important thing Black men have to do to begin engaging with feminism, as theory and praxis, is to disavow ourselves of the notion that we are 'good.' By that, I don't mean that we should perform some type of masochistic self-flagellation about how 'men ain't shit.' But the desire to be seen and known as a 'good Black man' is not only wrapped up in a lot of patriarchal notions about what constitutes manhood and defying the stereotypes of Blackness (having a job, not being in prison), it doesn't allow for growth."

Read An Excerpt Of "Invisible Man, Got The Whole World Watching" By Mychal Denzel Smith

This program aired on June 14, 2016.

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