Books: Non-Fiction

Counting Descent

Book — Non-fiction. By Clint Smith. 2016. 84 pages.
A teacher and scholar celebrates Black humanity, and guides readers toward self-reflection through his coming-of-age poems that are political, historical, and deeply personal.

Time Periods: 20th Century, 21st Century
Themes: African American, Language Arts

Book cover of Clint Smith's book of poetry, Counting DescentClint Smith’s debut poetry collection, Counting Descent is a coming of age story that seeks to complicate our conception of lineage and tradition.

Smith, who is a writer, teacher, and doctoral candidate in Education at Harvard University studying incarcerated youth, explores the cognitive dissonance that results from belonging to a community that unapologetically celebrates Black humanity while living in a world that often renders blackness a caricature of fear. His poems move fluidly across personal and political histories, all the while reflecting on the social construction of our lived experiences. Smith brings the reader on a powerful journey forcing us to reflect on all that we learn growing up, and all that we seek to unlearn moving forward. [Description from the publisher.]

  • Winner, 2017 Black Caucus of the American Library Association Literary Award
  • Finalist, 2017 NAACP Image Awards
  • One Book One New Orleans 2017 Book Selection

ISBN: 9781938912658 | Write Bloody Publishing

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