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Deep Denial
Deep Denial
by David Billings


 
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Crandall Dostie & Douglass Books Inc. (pub: November 1, 2016)

Deep Denial, part popular history and part personal memoir, documents the 400-year racialization of the United States and how people of European descent came to be called white. Author David Billings focuses primarily on the deeply embedded notion of white supremacy, and tells us why, despite the Civil Rights Movement and an African-American president, we remain, in the words of the author, a nation hard-wired by race.

A master storyteller, Billings starts each chapter with a disarming and intimate vignette from his personal life, beginning with his white, working-class boyhood in Mississippi and Arkansas. He then situates these telling moments in a broader historical context that will be new and disturbing to many readers.

Part I covers the origins and evolution of white supremacy from 17th century Virginia through World War II. Part II focuses on the Civil Rights Movement, how it emerged in the post-WWII era, and why it subsequently devolved from a vibrant community-led, issue-based movement into the bureaucratic, government-sponsored, needs-based, nonprofit industry of today. An epilogue discusses strategies for dismantling white supremacy and undoing racism in America.

DAVID BILLINGS has been an anti-racist trainer and organizer with the Peoples Institute for Survival and Beyond since 1983. Billings has worked with anti-racist organizing groups across the country, including AntiRacist Alliance and New York Education Equity Alliance. He currently consults with Citizens for Economic Equity in New Orleans.

Rev. Billings is an ordained United Methodist minister. He also is an historian with a special interest in the history of race and racism. Over the years, the organizing work of Billings has been cited for many awards including the Westchester County chapter of the National Association of Social Workers Public Citizen of the Year; the New Orleans Pax Christi Bread and Roses award; the Loyola University of New Orleans Homeless and Hunger Award ; the 2010 Martin Luther King Social Justice Award from the New Orleans Jazz Foundation; and the National Alliance against Racist Oppression Angela Davis Award for community service. He was the Whitney Young 2006 lecturer at the Westchester County NASW symposium.

David Billings was born in McComb, Mississippi and grew up in Helena, Arkansas. He has a BA from the University of Mississippi, a Masters of Divinity degree from New York Theological Seminary, and a Doctor of Ministry (ABD) from the University of Creation Spirituality (now Wisdom University). He is married to Margery Freeman and has three children, Nathan and Noah Shroyer, and Stella Billings, and six grandchildren, Jonathan, Abigail, Isaiah, Sofia, Twain, and Whipple Ann. David and Margery currently live in McComb, Mississippi.

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