The consensus was that book is nicely written, an easy read, if a bit too long and repetitive. A lot of research has been done, and the book is full of facts on the Jim Crow laws in the Southern States, and gives three examples of the migration of individual Black people from the Southern States to the Northern States of America. The book won the National Book Critics Circle Award, among many other accolades.
Sadness was expressed that slavery happened in the States, and that racial prejudice still lingers as a result. Our psychologist, Dr. Ruth, pointed out that human nature being what it is, different groups will always be suspicious of each other and that racism, meaning distrust, even fear, of the different “other” will always be with us. We were reminded that slavery has always been a large part of history. In the Middle Ages, for instance, the Vikings and Jews made fortunes trading, especially in slaves from Ireland, England, and other places. These slaves were sold even in China. At the same time, the Arabs were trading in Black slaves from the sub-Sahara. There are Black people in the Caribbean and South America, and their ancestors were all slaves. What happened in the Southern States of America was happening all over the world, and was not unique. It was of its times.
It is considered an advance that Black people are now examining their own experience in the United States. They are writing books and making films, and developing a deeper understanding themselves of what happened. More and more, they are developing a pride in themselves, and will be able to place their historic experience into the larger picture of world history.
The Warmth of Other Suns is part of that process. It is a good contribution.