Anyway, do you want a signed copy of The Disordered Cosmos? Because Loyalty Books is Black, queer, and not going anywhere. And all of their copies are signed. I’m about to make the case for why you should buy the paperback, but I will be honest and say that the hardcover is prettier and may actually be better? You decide. Anyway, an outline of what’s below:
Details about the paperback
Book events over the next few weeks (virtual and in-person)
Things I’ve published; please read!
I’m excited to announce that the paperback of The Disordered Cosmos is coming out tomorrow! You can grab a copy wherever books are sold. And why should you?
I updated “The Physics of Melanin” which now opens differently, and I think it reads better. There are a few other key changes throughout the text, including explicitly referencing Sylvia Wynter’s work, which I clearly was influenced by but was not explicitly reading extensively until after the hardcover had gone to print. (Maybe something I shouldn’t confess in public, but look, we’re always growing.) I also moved away from a “human rights” framework where I could, because I prefer thinking about liberation.
There’s a new note to readers at the end of the book. It talks about what I understood going into publication, what I learned from how readers received the book, and also why I refuse to accept the categorization of “memoir” but with an asterisk.
We also included a Q&A with me and a reading guide done by Shirley Ngozi Nwangwa, a stunning, relative-to-my-age young voice whose body of work already includes a phenomenal interview with THE Lorna Simpson for the NYT. Note, this was an especially thrilling interview in my opinion because not only am I a Lorna Simpson stan but also she said the following in the interview:
She talks about agency as a young Black woman in this field, about not being asked what she thinks in discussions, while watching her white counterparts be asked what they think. I’ve been reading it and thinking of our bodies as Black folk. Hundreds of years of white supremacy. Still, we don’t begin there, our bodies don’t begin there, our history doesn’t begin there. Not to say that that inflection point isn’t important, but we didn’t begin there. This has been freeing to think about because there has been so much denial about the reality of the relative present of the past hundreds of years. I texted my daughter for the title — it’s on my bedside: It’s Chanda Prescod-Weinstein’s “The Disordered Cosmos: A Journey Into Dark Matter, Spacetime & Dreams Deferred” (2021).
Tuesday May 10, 7 PM pacific: I will kick off The Disordered Cosmos Paperback Tour with a public lecture at Stanford University, hosted by the Kavli Institute for Particle Astrophysics and Cosmology. This will be FREE99, in person, and virtual. I will be signing books, and all registrants get a 10% discount on the book from the Stanford Bookstore.
THIS Wednesday May 11, 7 PM pacific: I will be in person at my old stomping grounds, Bookshop Santa Cruz, in conversation with my former graduate adviser Anthony Aguirre, author of Cosmological Koans, which is a quite beautiful book. Come get your book(s) signed. I expect this will be a delightful conversation. Again, it’s FREE99. Proof of vaccination and wearing a mask are both required.
NEXT WEEK, Thursday May 19, 8 PM eastern: I will be the least funny person on the Lovett or Leave It Tour, joining ACTUAL comedian who knows what he is doing John Hodgman on stage at the State Theatre in Portland, ME. I literally have no idea what’s going to happen, but if you’re in the area, grab a ticket (no I don’t get a cut afaik) and check us out.
Tuesday May 24, 6 PM central: Virtual conversation with fellow Black Jewish gawwwdess Camonghne Felix, once longlisted for the National Book Award in poetry, political maven, speech writer extraordinarie, for Tubby & Coos Bookshop in New Orleans. Check out Camonghne’s poetry collection Build Yourself a Boat and join us.
Thursday May 26, 7 PM eastern: Boston area! I will be joined in person at Brookline Booksmith by fellow Bold Type Books author Frankie de la Cretaz. We’ll almost certainly be talking genderqueer shit, in addition to The Disordered Cosmos and their new book Hail Mary: The Rise and Fall of the National Women’s Football League. We will be signing books!! Buy both. Masks are required and pre-registration is strongly encouraged.
Tuesday May 31, 7 PM central: I will be virtually visiting Women & Children First in Chicago and having a conversation with the brilliant Dr. Moya Bailey, who among her many accomplishments and contributions is the person who coined the term “misogynoir” and recently published the book Misogynoir Transformed: Black Women’s Digital Resistance. Since it’s all virtual, no mask required!! Register.
Wednesday June 1, 7 PM eastern: Anyone who has read the intro to TDC’s reading list knows that I think librarians fucking rock, which is why I’m excited to be in virtual conversation with folks at the Brooklyn Public Library, which shortlisted me last year for the Brooklyn Public Library Literary Prize. Register.
Back in January, I published what may be my finest piece of writing, Becoming Martian. Please read it. I wrote the shit out of it. It’s a Black ass think piece about space. And Nikki Giovanni and space.
I interviewed the fucking brilliant Imani Perry for Public Books, where we talked about the different American Souths plural, how the Caribbean fits in, how Blackness in America is constructed, and what it means to be allowed to speak confidently in your voice.
I have a new piece out today about Edward A. Bouchet: the first Black American to earn a PhD in the United States, one of the first twenty people to earn a PhD in the United States, the first Black American to earn a PhD in physics and probably the first Black person in the world to earn a PhD in physics. A Yalie, but I digress. I am here, writing to you, because he did the work. I am proud to have received the 2021 Edward A. Bouchet Award from the American Physical Society, and I hope he can become more of a household name.
Keep an eye out for future pieces about Carolyn Beatrice Parker and Ann Nelson. And as always, I’ve got my monthly column in New Scientist. The newest one comes out this week, and it’s about my gripes with how television popular science happens.
Finally, remember that you don’t know what someone is going through so try not to assume the worst but also fuck the theocrats on SCOTUS.