The Message

The Message

Written by:
Ta-Nehisi Coates
Narrated by:
Ta-Nehisi Coates
Coming Soon

Unabridged Audiobook

Release Date
October 2024
6 hours 0 minutes
The #1 New York Times bestselling author of Between the World and Me journeys to three resonant sites of conflict to explore how the stories we tell—and the ones we don’t—shape our realities.

Ta-Nehisi Coates originally set out to write a book about writing, in the tradition of Orwell’s classic “Politics and the English Language,” but found himself grappling with deeper questions about how our stories—our reporting and imaginative narratives and mythmaking—expose and distort our realities.

In the first of the book’s three intertwining essays, Coates, on his first trip to Africa, finds himself in two places at once: in Dakar, a modern city in Senegal, and in a mythic kingdom in his mind. Then he takes readers along with him to Columbia, South Carolina, where he reports on his own book’s banning, but also explores the larger backlash to the nation’s recent reckoning with history and the deeply rooted American mythology so visible in that city—a capital of the Confederacy with statues of segregationists looming over its public squares. Finally, in the book’s longest section, Coates travels to Palestine, where he sees with devastating clarity how easily we are misled by nationalist narratives, and the tragedy that lies in the clash between the stories we tell and the reality of life on the ground. 

Written at a dramatic moment in American and global life, this work from one of the country’s most important writers is about the urgent need to untangle ourselves from the destructive myths that shape our world—and our own souls—and embrace the liberating power of even the most difficult truths.
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