Provides four centuries of racist ideas throughout American history. Focusing exclusively on anti-black racism, Kendi separates racial discourse in the U.S. into segregationist, assimilationist and antiracist. The book centers around five intellectuals—Cotton Mather, Thomas Jefferson, William Lloyd Garrison, W. E. B. Du Bois, and Angela Davis. These thinkers are the historical anchors the author uses to guide the reader through each century of racist thinking in America.