Balancing Act: Luvvie Ajayi’s ‘Do-Better Manual’ Follow-Up: ‘I Don’t Think We’ve Done Better. At All.’

By Heidi Stevens
Chicago Tribune

WWR Article Summary (tl;dr) Author and speaker Luvvie Ajayi shares her thoughts on race, gender and pop-culture in her book “I’m Judging You: The Do-Better Manual.” Originally written in 2015, it is now being re-released in hardcover.

Chicago Tribune

Luvvie Ajayi captured the attention of Shonda Rhimes, Oprah Winfrey and millions of readers with her 2016 New York Times best-seller, “I’m Judging You: The Do-Better Manual.”

Now the book’s been rereleased in hardcover, and Ajayi, who wrapped up the recent “Together Live” tour with Glennon Doyle and Abby Wambach just in time to grab a 2017 outstanding leader award from YWCA Metropolitan Chicago, has thoughts.

“I don’t think we’ve done better since,” she told me recently. “At all.”

She finished writing her book, a collection of essays on race, gender, pop culture, rape culture, celebrity culture, and the fleeting nature of fame, in October 2015. Donald Trump was just one of a bunch of guys running for president. Harvey Weinstein was still co-chairman of The Weinstein Co. White supremacists were two years from brandishing tiki torches in Charlottesville, Va.

Our country wasn’t perfect, far from it. But we weren’t coming face-to-face with our shortcomings on the daily.

“I wanted this book to be timely, but I wish it wasn’t so relevant, because it means that we are failing on massive scales,” Ajayi writes in a postscript for the hardcover edition.

“I could write a whole other book called “I’m Judging You, America!” I still might. Who knows? But this dumpster fire we find ourselves in feels wholly unnecessary. It feels like it could have been avoided. But maybe not. Maybe it is necessary. This feels like a reckoning.”

Ajayi is not one of the many social commentators sputtering in daily disbelief at this nation’s state of affairs.

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