Beyond the Book: Background information when reading The Beautiful Struggle

Summary |  Excerpt |  Reviews |  Beyond the Book |  Readalikes |  Genres & Themes |  Author Bio

The Beautiful Struggle

A Father, Two Sons, and an Unlikely Road to Manhood

by Ta-Nehisi Coates

The Beautiful Struggle by Ta-Nehisi Coates X
The Beautiful Struggle by Ta-Nehisi Coates
  • Critics' Opinion:

    Readers' Opinion:

  • First Published:
    May 2008, 240 pages
    Paperback:
    Jan 2009, 240 pages

  • Rate this book


Book Reviewed by:
Stacey Brownlie

Buy This Book

About this Book

Beyond the Book

Print Review

The Black Panthers

The author's father, Paul Coates, was a member of the Black Panther Party. As Coates describes in his book, the Party's original aims concerned self-defense and social justice. Bobby Seale and Huey Newton founded the Party in 1966. Its diverse membership, however, made cohesion difficult and produced geographically clustered varieties of the socialism, counter-culturalism and Black Nationalism for which the Party became known. The Black Panthers frequently clashed with law enforcement: FBI Counter Intelligence Programs (COINTELPRO), for example, investigated the group's alleged connections to communism and hate-related violence across the U.S. Many in the Black community felt that the police and government were unfairly targeting the Panthers.

Berkeley Library offers an online collection of Black Panther history and chronology.


Black Classic Press

The author also frequently refers to his father's role as the founder of Black Classic Press, a Baltimore, MD printing and publishing company "devoted to publishing obscure and significant works by and about people of African descent." Paul Coates surrounded his sons with books and reading lists in their formative years and often enlisted them in chores surrounding the fledgling business. In the late 90's well known writer Walter Mosley approached Coates' press about publishing some older unpublished works. Black Classic Press just released its third Walter Mosley title, Tempest Tales, this May.


Interesting Links:

  • An essay about Bill Cosby by Coates from the May 2008 Atlantic Monthly.
  • The author's blog.
  • An article about Ta-Nehisi's father and Black Classic Press.

Article by Stacey Brownlie

This article was originally published in June 2008, and has been updated for the January 2009 paperback release. Click here to go to this issue.

This article is available to non-members for a limited time. You can also read these articles for free. For full access become a member today.

Membership Advantages
  • Reviews
  • "Beyond the Book" backstories
  • Free books to read and review (US only)
  • Find books by time period, setting & theme
  • Read-alike suggestions by book and author
  • Book club discussions
  • and much more!
  • Just $10 for 3 months or $35 for a year
  • More about membership!

Support BookBrowse

Become a Member and discover books that entertain, engage & enlighten!

Join Today!

Editor's Choice

  • Book Jacket: Future Home of the Living God
    Future Home of the Living God
    by Louise Erdrich
    Louise Erdrich began Future Home of the Living God in 2002, set it aside, and picked it up again in ...
  • Book Jacket: The Last Mrs. Parrish
    The Last Mrs. Parrish
    by Liv Constantine
    Amber has lived in poverty all her life, and she has had enough. Of course, wishing to have money ...
  • Book Jacket: Never Coming Back
    Never Coming Back
    by Alison McGhee
    18 out of 23 reviewers gave Alison McGhee's Never Coming Back a rating of 4 or 5, with an average ...

Book Discussion
Book Jacket
The Second Mrs. Hockaday by Susan Rivers

At once a love story, a history lesson and a beautifully written tale of forgiveness.

About the book
Join the discussion!

First Impressions

  • Book Jacket

    Wonder Valley
    by Ivy Pochoda

    A visionary and masterful portrait of contemporary L.A. from the author of Visitation Street.
    Reader Reviews

Who Said...

The worth of a book is to be measured by what you can carry away from it.

Click Here to find out who said this, as well as discovering other famous literary quotes!

Word Play

Solve this clue:

E Dog H I D

and be entered to win..

Books that     
entertain,
     engage

 & enlighten

Visitors can view some of BookBrowse for free. Full access is for members only.

Join Today!

Your guide toexceptional          books

BookBrowse seeks out and recommends books that we believe to be best in class. Books that will whisk you to faraway places and times, that will expand your mind and challenge you -- the kinds of books you just can't wait to tell your friends about.