Citizen: An American Lyric Book summary by Claudia Rankine (download pdf)


“Citizen: An American Lyric” by Claudia Rankine is a groundbreaking work that blends poetry, essay, and visual art to explore the complex and pervasive issue of racial prejudice and discrimination in contemporary America. 

It’s a powerful and thought-provoking reflection on what it means to be a citizen in a racially divided society.

TitleCitizen: An American Lyric
AuthorClaudia Rankine
PublisherGraywolf Press; 1st edition (October 7, 2014)
File Formatpdf
Number of pages160 pages
Customer Reviews4.6 out of 5 stars 3,201 Reviews
information about citizen by claudia rankine

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Citizen: An American Lyric Book summary by Claudia Rankine

“Citizen: An American Lyric” is a collection of prose poems and essays that examines the daily experiences of racism and microaggressions faced by Black individuals in the United States. 

Rankine artfully weaves together personal anecdotes, historical references, and cultural observations to create a vivid portrayal of the emotional toll that systemic racism takes on individuals and communities.

Through a series of vignettes and narratives, Rankine addresses a wide range of topics, from overt acts of racial bias to subtle, everyday incidents that can erode a person’s sense of self-worth. 

The book also explores the role of the media and popular culture in perpetuating racial stereotypes and inequalities.

Rankine’s use of second-person narration invites readers to step into the shoes of those who experience racism, fostering empathy and understanding. 

The book’s inclusion of visual art and photography enhances its impact, creating a multi-dimensional narrative.

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Citizen: An American Lyric Book summary by Claudia Rankine: download pdf


“Citizen: An American Lyric” is a profoundly important work that challenges readers to confront the realities of racism in contemporary America. 

Claudia Rankine’s blend of poetry and prose, along with her unflinching examination of racial prejudice, makes this book a critical contribution to the ongoing conversation about race and identity in the United States.


Who is the intended audience for “Citizen: An American Lyric”?

 This book is intended for a broad audience interested in issues of race, identity, and social justice. 

How does the book incorporate visual art into its narrative?

“Citizen: An American Lyric” includes visual art and photography that complement the text, providing a visual dimension to the themes explored in the book.

What impact has “Citizen” had on discussions about race and racism in the United States?

 “Citizen” has had a significant impact on public discourse about race and racism.

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