Born in London to Guyanese parents, David Lammy was the first black Briton to study at Harvard Law School and he practised as a barrister before entering politics. He is the Labour MP for Tottenham and the former minister for Higher Education, Health, Justice, and Culture respectively. Now, in his own words, Lammy is “on the backbenches telling it like it is” in particular raising issues of race, identity and belonging.To truly examine these issues further, David Lammy is writing a new book entitled Tribes. The MP explained, “At this time of unprecedented polarisation both within and beyond politics, I am excited to be writing a book which confronts the questions of belonging which lie behind it. With the global resurgence of a toxic ethnic nationalism on the right, and exclusionary politics on the far left, the early 2020s will be a crucial turning point in this century. By starting with an honest look at the tribes of which I am personally a member, I explore both the good and the bad of tribalism, before asking how different groups – within towns, countries and beyond – can come together.”’
The inspiration for this book he explains comes from the current pre-Brexit stage of the UK. “As our country enters into a crisis like never before, we are retreating into a new kind of tribalism. [I’m] so pleased that I am finally in the last stages of writing my book this summer, Tribes” tweeted Lammy.
Tribes is a combination of memoir and call-to-arms. The book tells some of David’s story; his campaigning for the Windrush British Citizens, his support for the families affected by the Grenfell Tower fire and even the results of his ethnic makeup from a DNA test David decided to take. At the same time, the writing examines our human need to belong and the positive collaborations that can come from that. However, Lammy also challenges the socially constructed tribalism of a digital and global modern world such as the dangers that can be caused by a sense of belonging.
Andreas Campomar, non-fiction publisher for Constable (and imprint of publisher Little, Brown) said; “David’s book is a timely one: a fascinating and perceptive analysis of not only the way the world works but also the way we are. Moreover, it will demonstrate how we can channel our need to belong into inclusive civic identities that work across classes, ethnicities and geographical boundaries.”
David Lammy’s Tribes: How Our Need to Belong Can Make or Break the Good Society will be published by Constable on 10th October this year and is available to pre-order now! Plus, Lammy’s first book Out of the Ashes: Britain After the Riots, published by Cornerstone in 2011, is available to buy and read now.