• We Are Each Other's Harvest

  • Celebrating African American Farmers, Land, and Legacy
  • By: Natalie Baszile
  • Narrated by: Tina Lifford
  • Length: 13 hrs and 41 mins
  • 4.7 out of 5 stars (40 ratings)

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Publisher's Summary

From the author of Queen Sugar - now a critically acclaimed series on OWN directed by Ava Duvernay - comes a beautiful exploration and celebration of Black farming in America. 

In this impressive anthology, Natalie Baszile brings together essays, poems, quotes, conversations, and first-person stories to examine Black people’s connection to the American land from Emancipation to today. In the 1920s, there were over one million Black farmers; today there are just 45,000. Baszile explores this crisis, through the farmers’ personal experiences. In their own words, middle-aged and elderly Black farmers explain why they continue to farm despite systemic discrimination and land loss. The "Returning Generation" - young farmers, who are building upon the legacy of their ancestors, talk about the challenges they face as they seek to redress issues of food justice, food sovereignty, and reparations.

These farmers are joined by other influential voices, including noted historians Analena Hope Hassberg and Pete Daniel, and award-winning author Clyde W. Ford, who considers the arrival of Africans to American shores; and James Beard Award-winning writers and Michael Twitty, reflects on Black culinary tradition and its African roots. Poetry and inspirational quotes are woven into these diverse narratives, adding richness and texture.

As Baszile reveals, Black farming informs crucial aspects of American culture - the family, the way our national identity is bound up with the land, the pull of memory, the healing power of food, and race relations. She reminds us that the land, well-earned and fiercely protected, transcends history and signifies a home that can be tended, tilled, and passed to succeeding generations with pride. We Are Each Other’s Harvest elevates the voices and stories of Black farmers and people of color, celebrating their perseverance and resilience, while spotlighting the challenges they continue to face. Luminous and eye-opening, this eclectic collection helps people and communities of color today reimagine what it means to be dedicated to the soil.

©2020 Natalie Baszile (P)2020 HarperCollins Publishers
  • Unabridged Audiobook
  • Categories: History

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Various Voices

I feel the strength of this collection of essays is in the various voices and timeframes which as a whole provide a well developed understanding of not only The African American agricultural experience but other marginalized communities as well. As a white woman who lives in a small rural community, I am aware of how our American agricultural system diminishes family farms. But understanding clearly the magnitude of hardship this system has placed on African Americans is important. We need a paradigm shift in our attitudes and in our system. These are long overdue for not only our American culture, but the well-being of the planet.
The narrator was good but I did feel her voice was a little too earnest over the long haul. My ear started to become numb to emphasis. Perhaps if I had spaced out the essays it would not have bothered me. But I kept listening for hours while gardening!

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Poor audio

The poor audio quality made this impossible to listen to comfortably and it’s a bit of a tragedy

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Inspirational discoveries of farming

The novel is inspirational and well-written, detailing the history of African-American farmers dating back to a history of farming in Africa.
The author explains her discoveries and the importance of agriculture when writing her novel "Queen Sugar.
Her interviews of African-American farmers and their families and stories of the U. S government instituted systemic racism, causing the reduction of African-American farmers.
The author mixes interviewees' photos with poetry to set the readers' minds at ease to enjoy the tales of sharecroppers, Mexican immigrants, all revealing their struggles and yet the hope of everyone's harvest into the future.
The diverse interviews describe the peaceful and calming to help US Military personnel who suffer from post-traumatic disorders.
The author's interviews cover every just about every farming agricultural practice, including cattle and even tobacco.
This novel will inspire anyone to become a farmer while connecting everyone's roots of nature's bountiful farming harvest.
The reader will discover everyone's responsibility to sustain ourselves by growing our food to maintain healthy lives.

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Yes we are each others harvest.

This book is a must read to learn history of what black and brown people have endured and are still enduring for the love of farming. It will make you angry, overwhelming sad but yet proud of their resilience on display.

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Beautiful. Simply.

Heartfelt, emotional, simple, clear. Wonderful stories of humans connecting with one another and with the land.

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Great Book - wonderful lesson!

Even though eastern North Carolina is my home and we did not live on a farm or in a rural area, I only knew people that had small garden of vegetables. I never worked in tobacco or cotton and left home immediately after my high school graduation. This book has taught me so much about farms that Blacks owned and we’re taken away from them through evil deeds. I have a high school classmate in Grimesland, Nc whose husband inherited the family farm and they are young people and will keep their land. My friend in Baltimore refused to sell the land she inherit from her father in Wake Forest, NC. I truly understand the value of owning land now. An excellent book and I will share with others as gifts.

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