Philadelphia and New York: J.B. Lippincott Company, (1971). Single volume, measuring 8.25 x 5.5 inches: , 256, . Original black boards, red cloth spine lettered in black, black endpapers, original unclipped color typographic dust jacket with photographs of Mead and Baldwin on back panel. Lightest toning to jacket edges.
First American edition of this conversation between writer James Baldwin and anthropologist Margaret Mead on the subject of race. Their “rap” was recorded over two days in New York City in the summer of 1970, in the wake of the trial of the Chicago 7 and the Kent State shootings. Although Baldwin and Mead come to their analyses of race from very different perspectives, and often clash, both thinkers are deeply committed to the conversation. Subjects covered include language, religion, gender, power, generational trauma and guilt, identity politics (Mead: “we've started to worry about identity since people began losing it”), and American ideals of assimilation (Baldwin: “Nobody ever got melted. People aren’t meant to be melted.”) A near-fine copy of a strikingly prescient book.