In her studies of Zora Neale Hurston, Deborah Plant became fascinated by Zora’s explanation for the atrocities of the international slave trade. In her memoir, Dust Tracks on a Road, Zora wrote: “But the inescapable fact that struck in my craw, was: my people had sold me and the white people had bought me. . . . It impressed upon me the universal nature of greed and glory.”
Of Greed and Glory highlights the ways in which slavery is still practiced in the United States, tracing the throughline from slavery to mass incarceration and demonstrating how this uprooting has devastated African American advancement in America, while it has enriched white America. And this corrupt system is not only harming Black Americans; the greed driving our capitalist society threatens the liberty of every last one of us. Freedom is the defining characteristic of America, and it is being undone. Of Greed and Glory dissects the systemic practices developed throughout history that perpetuate Blacks’ present state of inequality and injustice, underlining the lack of personal sovereignty threatening all Americans should this relentless pursuit of profit persist. By raising consciousness and clarifying the consistency with which Black lives have been devalued, and how we are all enthralled to this madness, Plant charts a path forward toward the personal sovereignty our nation is founded upon.
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