Soul is about human connection. Soul is about deep feeling, about self-knowledge and empathy. As my Songhay friends in West Africa like to say, a soulful quality makes life sweet, which, in turn, sweetens the quality of life in the world. My students remind me that without soul, there is no social contract and no social harmony.
As a Moroccan national who visits the U.S. often, I have grown attached to the American people, their country, and the values they aspire to live by. And so it pains me to hear of incidents of police brutality, which violate the rule-of-law principles America stands for, and it pains me further when looting and assaults on police mar legitimate protests with further criminality.
Strong Inside is the story of Perry Wallace, who was the first African-American basketball player in the Southeastern Conference. It's part sports book and part sociological case study. Maraniss is able to emotionally insert the reader into the middle of the country's civil rights movement of the late 1960s.