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Polymathic Monthly Issue #48: Belonging, Friday Black and Upside Decay.


Polymathic Monthly

June 20 · Issue #46 · View online

A curation of articles, tech, books and innovation strategy to enrich your career and personal lives.

It’s been a few months since the last PM and all I can say is that, even as the world opens up, for me it feels like a time to still hold on to the things that became important during the worst days of the pandemic. So here’s a bumper edition of PM to partially make up for the time apart.
Let’s get into it!
And you can read on PM here.

  • Friday Black’ takes our present reality to its grotesque and logical conclusion. The tales of our regular experiences in America become explosively violent in Nana Kwame Adjei-Brenyah’s hands because we have become truly numb. Familiar yet dystopian. Fantastic.
  • A Particular Kind of Black Man’ by Tope Folarin follows in a line of recent novels that mine the lives of the author and leave you wondering if its autobiographical. You root for the protagonist but wonder how things will work out.
  • Standpipe’ by David Hardin is an earnest book about the Flint water disaster. To avoid repeating a story we all know, Hardin weaves the story of his family and his part in the work. Like reading diary entries from a man grieving for his family and a community he starts to know.
  • Through the lens of ‘Four Lost Cities’ Annalee Newitz traces the falls of Catalhoyuk, Pompei, Angkor And Cahokia (now East St Louis) to inform our decisions about the future of cities. While the book reveals new information about places we think we know, I found it dug too deep into parts that didn’t add more than a moral sheen over some conclusions drawn.
  • I flipped though ‘The Rap Year Book’ by Shea Serrano before reading the introduction. And my reactions went something like ‘Still Tippin by Mike Jones as the rap song for 2004???!! Drake and not Raekwon in 2009?!. And then I read the introduction and realized the criteria is ‘Most Important’ according to Shea. So the disagreement is the point. Fun ‘book’ that is bound to tickle any rap fan.
I was on Max Chpopvsky’s ‘Moral of the Story’ podcast sharing and breaking down a particular pivotal story for me. I hope you enjoy it. 
Hope you’re having a great start to the summer! I should be able to get through the backlog in a few issues.
Thanks for reading!
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