ISBN 10: 1491576855 / ISBN 13: 9781491576854
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Inhaltsangabe: Emily Raboteau’s Searching for Zion takes listeners around the world on an unexpected adventure of faith. Both one woman’s quest for a place to call “home” and an investigation into a people’s search for the Promised Land, this landmark work is a trenchant inquiry into contemporary and historical ethnic displacement. At twenty-three, Raboteau traveled to Israel to visit her childhood best friend. While her friend appeared to have found a place to belong, Raboteau couldn’t say the same for herself. As a biracial woman from a country still divided along racial lines, she’d never felt at home in America. But as a reggae fan and the daughter of a historian of African-American religion, Raboteau knew of Zion as a place black people yearned to be. She’d heard about it on Bob Marley’s Exodus and in the speeches of Martin Luther King. She understood it as a metaphor for freedom, a spiritual realm rather than a geographical one. In Israel, the Jewish Zion, she was surprised to discover black Jews. Inspired by their exodus, Raboteau sought out other black communities that had left home in search of a Promised Land. Her question for them is the same she asks herself: have you found the home you’re looking for? On her ten-year journey back in time and across the globe, through the Bush years and into the age of Obama, Raboteau wanders through Jamaica, Ethiopia, Ghana, and the Southern United States to explore the complex and contradictory perspectives of “black Zionists.” She talks to Rastafarians and African Hebrew Israelites, Evangelicals and Ethiopian Jews, and Hurricane Katrina transplants from her own family — people who have risked everything in search of territory that is hard to define and harder to inhabit. In Searching for Zion, Raboteau overturns our ideas of place and patriotism, displacement and dispossession, citizenship and country in a disarmingly honest and refreshingly brave take on the pull of the story of exodus.

From the Back Cover: "This is a beautifully written and thought-provoking book. MY HEAD GETS BLOWN OFF EVERY PAGE. Though it describes Raboteau's very unique journey for her spiritual Zion, it's somehow wholly universal, too. Everywhere she goes, she hopes to find some straight and golden thread that would draw a line in the direction home, but instead she finds a tangle of humanity that refuses to adhere to any tidy narrative. An African-American named Robert E. Lee who lives in Ghana. Ethiopian Jews who find Jerusalem but not acceptance. And yet everyone she meets she renders with great deftness and empathy--a novelistic level of detail and understanding. I doubt there will be a more important work of nonfiction this year."
--Dave Eggers, author of A Hologram for the King and Zeitoun

"An EXCEPTIONALLY BEAUTIFUL and well researched book about a search for the kind of home for which there is no straight route, the kind of home in which the journey itself is as revelatory as the destination. Go on this timely and poignant journey with Emily Raboteau and you will never think of home in the same way again."
--Edwidge Danticat, author of Brother I'm Dying and Create Dangerously

"Emily Raboteau has written a POIGNANT, PASSIONATE, human-scale memoir about the biggest things: identity, faith, and the search for a place to call home in the world. Searching for Zion is as reaching as it is intimate, as original as it is old soul. I didn't want to put this beautiful book down."
--Cheryl Strayed, author of Wild

"I burned through this EYE-OPENING book, utterly engaged with Raboteau's search--which is, after all, everyone's search. Raboteau presents a self full of contradictions, SMOLDERING energy, and the willingness to lay it all bare. Searching for Zion is a GLORIOUS meditation on what it is to be alive."
--Nick Flynn, author of Another Bullshit Night in Suck City

"Searching for Zion is both an ENORMOUSLY MOVING journey and a profound reflection on an important topic. I was hooked and could not put it down. Emily Raboteau is a gifted and POWERFUL writer."
--James H. Cone, author of Black Liberation Theology and The Cross and the Lynching Tree


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