A vital, transformative study of the damage caused by racism from the perspective of trauma and body-centred psychology
Resmaa Menakem is a therapist with decades of experience specializing in trauma, body-centred psychotherapy, and violence prevention. My Grandmother's Hands was a New York Times bestseller.
Insightful, thought-provoking and profound. I can't recommend
It's not just a manual for feeling your feelings, it's an excavation of the soul. . . Perhaps the most compelling idea in My Grandmother's Hands is that culture lives in the body - in the food we eat, the rituals we perform and ways in which we do or do not soothe our own bodies. It means that when we have the capacity to cultivate new cultures among us through embodied practices.
A revolutionary work of beauty, brilliance, compassion and ultimately, hope. With eloquence and grace, Resmaa Menakem masterfully lays out the missing piece in the puzzle of why, despite so many good intentions, we have not achieved racial justice. . . This is an intimate guidebook toward racial healing, one that achieves that rare combination for its readers: it is deeply intellectually stimulating while also providing practical ways to engage in the process of repair
*Robin DiAngelo, author of White Fragility*
Full of wisdom and understanding. Menakem offers a new way to understand racism and, more importantly, to heal it. This book lays out a path to freedom and peace, first for individual readers, then for our culture as a whole. A must-read
*Nancy Van Dyken, author of Everyday Narcissism*
Resmaa Menakem's penetrating insight into trauma is profoundly impactful, but even more powerful and useful are his strategies for addressing it -- for healing. A brilliant thinker, he is able to bring a multitude of research and experience together to guide us in our understanding of how trauma affects our lives. This is essential reading if we are to wrest ourselves from the grips of trauma
*Alexs Pate, author of Amistad*
Forget diversity. Forget teaching tolerance. Forget white guilt. With clarity and insight, Resmaa Menakem offers a profoundly different approach to healing racism
*John Friel and Linda Friel, co-authors of Adult Children*
My Grandmother's Hands invites each of us to heal the racial trauma that lives in our bodies. As Resmaa Menakem explains, healing this trauma takes courage and a commitment to viscerally feel this racial pain. By skillfully combining therapy expertise with social criticism and practical guidance, he reveals a path forward for individual and collective healing that involves experiencing the sensations of this journey with each step.
*Alex Haley, Professor at the University of Minnesota’s Center for Spirituality & Healing*
Menakem cuts to the heart of America's racial crisis with the precision of a surgeon in ways few have before. As this amazing work shows us, policies alone will not do it, and bold social action, though vital to achieving justice, will require those engaged in it to also take action on the injury, deep and personal, from which we all suffer
*Tim Wise, author of White Like Me*
An intimate and direct look at the way the Black-white dynamic is held, not only in institutions such as policing, but also in the bodies of all of those involved . . . offers concrete practices that are part of the work of shifting the violence of the original wound
*Susan Raffo, writer, and community organizer*
Resmaa Menakem offers a path of internal reconciliation for a person enduring the generational trauma of American racism, and gives us all a chance to dream of a healing from it
*Keith Ellison, Member of Congress and Deputy Chair of the Democratic National Committee*
As a career peace officer I entered this noble profession to serve my community, but I had never received any instruction in the police academy or been issued a piece of equipment that prepared me to recognize or examine community trauma . . . or my own. My Grandmother's Hands gave me a profound and compelling historical map tracing law enforcement's role as sometimes unknowing contributors to community trauma
*Medaria Arradondo, Acting Chief, Minneapolis Police Department*