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Publisher's Summary

The Highly Acclaimed Sunday Times Best Seller

Through the prism of sport and conversations with its legends, including Usain Bolt, Adam Goodes, Thierry Henry, Michael Johnson, Ibtihaj Muhammad, Makhaya Ntini, Naomi Osaka and Hope Powell, Michael Holding explains how racism dehumanises people; how it works to achieve that end; how it has been ignored by history and historians; and what it is like to be treated differently just because of the colour of your skin.

Rarely can a rain delay in a cricket match have led to anything like the moment when Holding spoke out in the wake of the #BlackLivesMatter protests about the racism he has suffered and has seen all around him throughout his life. But as he spoke, he sought not only to educate but to propose a way forward that inspired so many. Within minutes, he was receiving calls from famous sports stars from around the world offering to help him to spread the message further.

Now, in Why We Kneel, How We Rise, Holding shares his story together with those of some of the most iconic athletes in the world. He delivers a powerful and inspiring message of hope for the future and a vision for change and takes you through history to understand the racism of today. He adds: 'To say I was surprised at the volume of positive feedback I received from around the world after my comments on Sky Sports is an understatement. I came to realise I couldn’t just stop there; I had to take it forward - hence the book, as I believe education is the way forward.' 

©2021 Michael Holding (P)2021 Simon & Schuster, UK

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  • Halford
  • 29-07-2021

Love this

Fabulous! Michael Holding speaks eloquently and with gravitas. I will listen again and again 👏🏽👍🏽😘
Respect

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  • Miss K Douglas
  • 29-07-2021

Th and relay these major things t

What an excellent read. This was truly an education. Thank you for taking the time to research and relay these major events that have happened in our history. Beautifully written and read

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  • papapownall
  • 25-07-2021

Powerful book on the impact of racism

I remember watching Michael Holding bowling for the West Indies in the early 1980s, nicknamed "Whispering Death" he had a long run up and was devastatingly fast and accurate. Now best known as a commentator and pundit he is respected by sports people all over the world. Mikey was moved to tears in 2020 when asked about racism in sport on TV following the death of George Floyd. Any sportsman is contacted by someone as iconic as Michael Holding will take the call and in this book the author recounts conversations he has had recently with, amongst others, Thierry Henry, Usain Bolt, Michael Jordan and Makhaya Ntini who talk about the de-humanising racism they have encountered in their sports.
This deeply moving book covers the history of racial intolerance including the works of Voltaire, Hume and even US President Jefferson who considered white skinned people to be the superior race and the cognitive dissidence regarding slavery. The elite sports people that Michael Holding spoke to were against quotas or positive discrimination and generally believe that education us the key as racism is a learned behaviour. The England cricket team were the first to stop "taking the knee" following one short short series against West Indies in 2020 and sadly there is still a long way to go. This is a powerful book.

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  • Alex P.
  • 25-07-2021

Opened my eyes

What can you say other than wow. I am 41 and of mixed race and lived with racism my whole life in England. I like so many just kept my head down with the fear of being singled out further and from my earliest memories just wanted to fit in and belong. I has suppressed so many memories and experiences that I couldn’t speak about and listening to this book had opened my mind and made me realise that I never had a chance of fitting in or belonging so in many ways failed by thinking I could. It has made me realise we have to stop and challenge or there is no hope for the future for our kids!!
I want to say thank you for standing up and speaking out. It is a very hard and upsetting subject that has catastrophically affected so many for so long as still does today. Without brave and strong people like you Mr Holding we can not win nor be equals. I am racking my brain to try to find a way to speak to my young children about this subject as I had started them on a path similar to mine by keeping your head down but now realise this is wrong.
It sounds dramatic but this book has changed / broken the mind set I have held all my life. I feel immensely upset and a failure but somehow at the same time liberated and like there is hope for the future. Society needs to stand up and change ✊🏾

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