Ta-Nehisi Coate’s 8 Years in Power;Tragedy 

Ta-Nehisi Coate’s 8 Years in Power
Ta-Nehisi Coate’s 8 Years in Power

Ta-Nehisi Coate’s 8 Years in Power;Tragedy

Ta-Nehisi Coate’s 8 Years in Power

Book Review Overview
This semester’s final paper will consist of a book review of Ta-Nehisi Coate’s We Were Eight Years in Power: An American Tragedy. This assignment is an attempt to apply the skills, knowledge, concepts and assumptions that we have learned and used through our investigation of the course material. Furthermore this assignment is a project of synthesis. The idea is to put your newly-gained knowledge altogether in your own well-informed and critical fashion. Therefore, your book review should be a critical and reflective analysis, not just a book summary.
Organization & Requirements
Organization is key to presenting your ideas and interpretation of them in a clear and concise manner. Your book review should range from 7-10 pages and consist of four components. The Introduction and Conclusion are self-explanatory, but I cannot stress that a well thought out introduction is essential for setting the proper context for this assignment. The four components of the book review include:
• Introduction
• Book Summary
• Critical Analysis of the Text • Conclusion
In the first component you should provide some contextual clues that might introduce the reader to the text and the relevance of the text. Here are some possible questions to engage:
• Why should we care about this book?
• What is its importance to you?
• What is its importance to Afrikan people?
• How does this topic contribute to changing the life chances of Afrikan people?
Your introduction should be about 1-2 pages. Therefore, I would like each of you to reflect upon the best way to contextualize this book. You just can’t jump into the text, so think of ways to invite your reader in. The idea is to catch the reader’s attention.
The second component of the book review should be at least 2 pages and consist of a summary of the major themes found throughout the text. You should engage key concepts, assumptions and ideas that are used by the author to support the overall thesis of their argument. You should also provide supporting evidence which shows the way in which the author applies these concepts.
The third component of the book review should be at least 2-3 pages and will be a critical analysis of the major arguments of the text. You should also relate the arguments found within this text to our readings from this semester. Since you have a grasp of the key arguments as
discussed by Dawson, think about how his ideas are relevant to your reading and interpretation of Coates. Here are some possible questions to engage:
• How do the ideas of Coates contribute to Black political thought?
• What are the strengths in the author’s arguments?
• What are the weaknesses in the author’s arguments?
• Are the author’s arguments well supported?
• What other supporting evidence should the author have used to support their thesis?
Of all the components of this assignment, this is probably the most important and it will be here that you should be able to clearly show that you not only have a grasp of Coates but also how the his arguments are relevant and/or irrelevant to our course readings and the general themes we have covered this semester.
The final component of the book review is a reflective conclusion. Please explain how your personal perception, comprehension and evaluation of contemporary Black political thought has changed and/or developed during the course of this analysis of Coates.

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