My love for books and reading started at a young age with mystery novels, teen books, and eventually fictional novels. It wasn't until a somewhat uncomfortable conversation with a very educated and successful black woman that I realized I should be rethinking by genre choice. She expressed to me the importance of reading black perspectives, and supporting black authors. I listened and understood but my young mind was still not fully grasping the knowledge she was passing on. I am half black, and I grew up primarily with my black family so I thought I understood the black perspective, but she was talking about so much more. I attended Southwestern Community College to complete my prerequisties for FIDM, and there I met Professor Stanley James, who was teaching African American studies. Professor James introduced me too so much history I had no clue about. Rather than just reading fictional pieces by black authors I decided to expand my choices. I found Reniqua Allen's book while I was roaming through Barnes & Noble. The title instantly stood out to me and before I knew it I was in.
“As I entered my 30s, still navigating what achieving the dream would mean, I wondered what other black millennials were feeling. I wanted to figure out what my generation of Black Americans thought about the promise of the American dream and how we can attain it,” -Reniqua Allen
"The American Dream" a term we've all heard growing up, but yet sadly still has a different meaning dependent upon what color your skin is. For many in the black community the dream is simply survival. To go about your normal daily life without fear of prejudice, discrimination, or violence. To raise your children without worrying whether or not they will lose their lives over what should be a routine traffic stop, or day at the park. For others particularly millennials "The American Dream" is one of success, wealth, and upward mobility. A dream that should be attainable for everyone in a country that boasts "freedom and equality for all." How can we as millennials achieve our so called "American Dream?" when our grandparents are still fighting for theirs?
In this book Allen explores the journey of different black millennials, their personal experiences, and the obstacles they face trying to make it in "white America." The current state of our country and the protests we see taking place right now clearly demonstrates that for Black America "The American Dream" is still that....just a dream, but one we will continue to fight and strive for because it is our right has human beings, and as the backbone of America. It is our duty for the generation behind us and those behind them.
Check out "It Was All A Dream" by: Reniqua Allen