Michael Eric Dyson

Is Bill Cosby Right?

Or Has the Black Middle Class Lost Its Mind?

Winner of the NAACP Image Award for Outstanding Literary Work—Nonfiction!

Now available to take on Bill Cosby's infamous assault on the black poor during his NAACP Awards speech on May 17, 2004, Is Bill Cosby Right? by Michael Eric Dyson is sure to incite debate and ignite controversy.

Nothing exposed the ever-increasing divide in black America today more starkly than Bill Cosby, the comedian-cum-social critic, when he lamented what he sees as a lack of parenting, poor academic performance, sexual promiscuity, and criminal behavior amongst what he called the "knuckleheads" of the African-American community. Even more surprising than his own comments, however, was the fact that the audience laughed and applauded. Michael Eric Dyson deconstructs Cosby's speech and offers a critical and much needed reassessment of the social and cultural issues facing America's black poor. Displaying the critical prowess and commitment to struggling African Americans that have made Dyson the nation's preeminent spokesman for the hip-hop generation, Is Bill Cosby Right? challenges us all—black and white—to confront the social problems that the civil rights movement failed to solve.

About the Author

Dr. Michael Eric Dyson is the author of The Michael Eric Dyson Reader, Open Mike; Holler If You Hear Me: Searching for Tupac Shakur; Why I Love Black Women; I May Not Get There With You: The True Martin Luther King, Jr.; Race Rules: Navigating the Color Line; Between God and Gangsta Rap; Making Malcolm: The Myth and Meaning of Malcolm X; and Reflecting Black. He is the Avalon Foundation Professor in the Humanities at the University of Pennsylvania and lives in Philadelphia.

Photograph by Matt Carr
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Michael Eric Dyson, photo by Matt Carr
Is Bill Cosby Right?
New York Times Interview
MSNBC: Excerpt & Video
NPR Radio: Interview
Newsweek Online Review
AOL BlackVoices Interview
Read Submitted Opinions
April 4, 1968
Debating Race
Come Hell or High Water
The Michael Eric Dyson Reader
Open Mike
Know What I Mean?
Mercy, Mercy Me
Why I Love Black Women
Holler If You Hear Me