Gloria Jean Watkins or better known by her nickname Bell Hooks is a prominent literary figure as well as a leader in feminist and civil-rights movements. Killing Rage. Stop Racism seamlessly incorporates both of these issues to address the society’s problems. Hooks’s informal and violent writing style is often criticised by others. But Hooks wants to reach more readers so she can spread her views about intolerance to them. Hooks’s writing style can seem too intense. However, it shows her anger at discrimination. An extremely educated black woman, Hooks asserts that communication and literacy are key to creating a society free of discrimination. Hooks is unable to imagine ending racism in her community because of the “killing anger” she experiences from racism and sexualism. Hooks’s entire work is built on the “killing anger” she feels after sitting beside a white male “anonymous” who “she longs to kill” (8). Hooks experienced an overwhelming feeling of rage after an altercation involving the “anonymous male white” and her black friend. Hooks wrote Killing Rage. She eventually feels powerless because she doesn’t have control over her fate or an outlet for her anger. Hooks states that black rage is something Hooks cannot see as anything but sickness (12). Hooks believes she is living in a culture that doesn’t take her race’s problems seriously. The black population feels subjugated by the public. This creates a sense of frustration that leaves no way for her to heal from the mistreatment and oppression she has suffered. Hooks continues to assert that black rage is often associated with the lower classes (12). This association may also be responsible for black anger being dismissed, Hooks claims. Black citizens feel repressed by class struggle and segregation. These factors also lead to an increase in emotions that can cause a shift from powerlessness and rage to white citizens. Hooks states that whites have colonized the black American population through segregation, in order to “perpetuate or maintain white supremacy” (14). Hooks also claims that we are taught to suppress our anger by colonizers. This dehumanization leaves black people without a healthy, constructive outlet that can help them change their circumstances. This problem is marked by a double standard. White supremacists are not only oppressors of black anger, they also express their white rage on black people without regard to consequences. Hooks states that while white rage is acceptable and can be expressed and even condoned (15), black rage is not appropriate and should not be tolerated. Hooks’ anger and frustration only worsens when Hooks is surrounded by her peers. She continues by pointing out the success of the colonization methods used by white people, saying “black people suppress and extinguish our rage for assimilation” (16). This repression, assimilation eventually causes black people to lose their individuality and become more like the blacks. This antiproductive attitude is partly responsible for America’s continued racism. Hooks asserts that the “black freedom struggle cannot occur if collective black rage is not tapped” (20). The only way the black community can solve the daily challenges they face is through unification. They can only reform if they have a strong sense and organization to achieve equality.

Everybody is responsible for continuing discrimination based on gender, and not just men. Hooks emphasizes that “revolutionary Feminism [movement] isn’t anti-male.” (63). It is difficult to fight sexism when you are trying to eradicate racism. Supporters of racism keep tying “black liberalization to the development black patriarchy”, and look to “strong black men’s leadership” as a way to bring them to equality (63). Anti-racists seek to make black women less prominent by relying on black men who can lead. Women must stand up in anti-racism and anti-sexism movements, otherwise they will never achieve equality.

Hooks explains that the first step in anti-racist struggles is to “break the denial” of racism. Hooks believes this is the best way to build a loved community. Many white people believe they don’t have to be racist, for many reasons. Hooks argues that white denial is primarily due to the attitudes and values of white supremacists. This eventually leads to white supremacy ideology (264). Hooks asserts that the only way to move toward a loved community is for white people to admit their racism. Many people have an incomplete idea of what this beloved community looks like. Many see it as a society in the “transcended, forgotten” category, where everyone would not recognize skin color (263). This idea has created a deep sense cultural protectionism. One does not want to leave their culture and heritage in the name of assimilation. Many black people believe they would have to “surrender” their identity, beliefs, and values in order to accept the “values, beliefs, and values of privileged-class whites.” (266).

Hooks presents the correct view on how beloved communities should be built. Hooks explains that this is not done by eliminating differences. It is by affirming each other’s cultural heritages and identities. This vision ends the culture protectionism created by the older example. Learning about the culture and individualities within a group can help you accept and overcome discrimination. Hooks claims to have built a beloved community in a smaller setting and believes that everyone can achieve the dream of accepting other races and eliminating white supremacy. Hooks’ beloved community has made it clear that each member of the group is committed to an anti-racist lifestyle (271). These people are open-minded and accept differences, yet they also have the ability to live in harmony with others. Hooks believes that these individuals have a duty to share their experiences in order for the rest to see that interracial harmony is possible. The black population must not let the actions of racist white people determine how they resist change (267). They can’t allow white supremacists’ negativity to stop them from supporting anti-racism.

Hooks believes America can end racism, sexism and create a loving community by turning the “killing-rage” into something productive. Hooks believes first and foremost that black rage must be acknowledged by whites. To address sexism today, women must be active in the feminist movement and the fight against racism. Only by accepting differences and realizing their worth can society make progress towards a more loving, accepting community.

Critical Analysis Of Bell Hooks’ Book Killing Rage:ending Racism


I am a 34-year-old educational blogger and student. I enjoy writing about education and sharing my insights and experiences with others. I hope to use this blog as a way to share my knowledge and help others learn more about the subjects that interest me.

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