On the Other Side of Freedom by DeRay Mckesson

On the Other Side of Freedom

"On the Other Side of Freedom reveals the mind and motivations of a young man who has risen to the fore of millennial activism through study, discipline, and conviction. His belief in a world that can be made better, one act at a time, powers his narratives and opens up a view on the costs, consequences, and rewards of leading a movement."--Henry Louis Gates, Jr.From the internationally recognized civil rights activist/organizer and host of the p...

Details On the Other Side of Freedom

TitleOn the Other Side of Freedom
Release DateSep 4th, 2018
GenreNonfiction, Social Movements, Social Justice, Race, Politics, Autobiography, Memoir

Reviews On the Other Side of Freedom

  • Susan
    This book is part memoir and part discussion of racial issues that affect the US. DeRay McKesson relates life experiences while also making you think how society is set up. This book is a must read.I was provided a copy of this book by NetGalley in exchange for an honest review.
  • Joshunda Sanders
    How can you not know about Deray and his everpresent blue vest? This beautiful memoir has some lovely additional details about it, of course, but what is most resonant is additional information about his connection to his family, how he came to be engaged in Ferguson and the larger Movement for Black Lives and his uniquely graceful, eloquent description of moving from being quiet about his sexuality to speaking up, along with the heart-tugging be...
  • chantel nouseforaname
    You have to appreciate what DeRay has contributed to the culture. An idea that he discusses is that sometimes, a lot of the time, people just need someone to point their "founder" label at to make sense of shit that happens in the world. They need to label someone "founder of a movement" to either point their hate at or point their love at and he's been, a lot of the time, the focal point of that sort of attention; whether or not he wanted it. Th...
  • Susie Dumond
    DeRay Mckesson is a powerful advocate who has become one of the most visible leaders of the #blacklivesmatter movement. This book is part essay collection and part memoir, and delves into his beginnings as a protester, experiences in activism, and advice for fighting against white supremacy and police violence. Mckesson does a great job of making the personal political and using his own memories as a mirror for society. I feel like it took a whil...
  • Bonni
    A breathtaking book. DeRay is able to "zoom in" to stories from his own life and masterfully "zoom out" to present compelling data regarding mass incarceration, gun violence, racial inequality, and more. The last chapter (Letter to an Activist) is worth the price of admission alone. He stresses the importance of African Americans needing to insist that others be able to hold their anger and not expect them to "perform" as if they are happy. He al...
  • Mary
    Definitely worth going back to as I think about how I can contribute to movements for social justice. Mckesson thoughtfully examines how liberation movements can be effective in the age of social media, and lays out a vision for moving society forward. It’s an expansive, embracing view that seeks justice, not revenge, and which recognizes that we can play a variety of roles according to our experiences and passions. Highly recommended for its s...
  • Jordan Smith
    It was a good book, I really enjoyed hearing DeRay McKesson’s story and his experiences. I think he has so much to off and strives so hard to better our society. The world is better because of DeRay. I gave 4 Stars because I felt like it got hard to follow at times. Sometimes the sources were blog articles and not necessarily empirical research. Overall, I would recommend this book to anyone who wants to learn more about being an activist/doing...
  • Randall
    If you are curious who Deray Mckesson is, where he came from, what has influenced his thinking, and what he's working on, this is a good primer. That being said, his writing in this book has a more academic feel than his podcast, Pod Save the People, where he and his panelists are more accessible. While Deray does give some tangible examples to explain his thinking, it is still often rather abstract and could use some more fleshing out. That bein...
  • Elizabeth Kissling
    I've admired DeRay McKesson for years and was excited to read On the Other Side of Freedom. He has described his new book as a collection of essays, but they work together coherently. The book is an engaging and smart synthesis of accessible philosophy, practical guide, and memoir. It would have been a great addition to the seminar I taught on activism a year ago; I'm confident students would enjoy it and find it personally meaningful.
  • Mary
    I loved the essays in this book. DeRay Mckesson is a gifted writer and tackles tough issues with clarity and grace. The impacts of racism, homophobia and our inhumane justice system are treated as they need to be - as human built systems that can and must be rebuilt. A book worth reading for the national conversation we need to be having.
  • Mimi Stevenson
    Great read covering all kinds of topics ranging from activism to how to get involved to discord amongst the activist community and privilege and sexuality. He’s a great writer and I’d love to read more from him.
  • Emmanuel
    So much power in these pages, but can I also say that this is the single greatest opening line of an essay?: "It wasn't that I didn't believe in god, but that I believed in Storm from the X-Men more."
  • Lainey
    Keep the fight. Thank you.
  • Kari
    3.5 starsDeRay argues for making the world a better place by actively believing in and working for the changes that are necessary. I appreciated the stories about his time in Ferguson and what he saw and experienced there.