Pacific Book Reviews: Anthony Avina

One of the sad realities of our world is that racism in the world at large, but especially in the United States, still exists today. As John Lewis once said, “The scars and stains of racism are still deeply embedded in the American society.” In author Eugene DeFriest Bétit’s book Collective Amnesia: American Apartheid: African Americans ’400 Years in North America, 1619–2019, the true history of African Americans over the course of 400 years on the North American continent are explored.

In this book, the author thoroughly explores the sad and continuing history of discrimination, violence, and persecution of African Americans in North America. From slavery and the Civil War to the huge contributions made by African Americans during both World Wars, and modern-day slayings of innocent, unarmed African American people in our modern age, this book captures the raw emotional toll and tragic history of an entire group of people in our world.

The book captures the sadness and injustice that African American individuals have endured over the last 400 years. While the actions of Abraham Lincoln and the Civil War may have begun the idea of equality, racism and discrimination against African Americans did not end once the Civil War did. Actions and words over the last 400 years are still felt to this day and represent a horrible mentality that has not yet found a way to be erased over the last few centuries, a mentality of pure racism and hatred.

This is a read for anyone interested in history, tales of injustice, and anyone interested in the long history of African Americans as a whole. As a historical buff, it was both fascinating and sad to hear the events that have transpired and the continuation of the discrimination African American people have faced for centuries. With our current society still embroiled in these acts of racial violence and discrimination, this book is much needed to teach the true history of not just our nation but the history of African Americans as a whole.

A thought-provoking, detailed and thorough read, Collective Amnesia: American Apartheid: African Americans ’400 Years in North America, 1619–2019 by Eugene DeFriest Bétit is a brilliant narrative that explores a tragic history that must not be forgotten. This book is incredible, brutally honest, and necessary. Read this book and then change yourself and your world.