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Summary

David was the first black Briton to study at Harvard Law School and practised as a barrister before entering politics. He has served as the Member of Parliament for Tottenham since 2000. Today, David is one of Parliament's most prominent and successful campaigners for social justice. 

He led the campaign for Windrush British citizens to be granted British citizenship and has been at the forefront of the fight for justice for the families affected by the Grenfell Tower fire.   

In 2007, inspired by the bicentenary of the Abolition of the Slave Trade Act and looking to explore his own African roots, David Lammy took a DNA test. Ostensibly he was a middle-aged husband and father, MP for Tottenham and a die-hard Spurs fan. But his nucleic acids revealed that he was 25 percent Tuareg tribe (Niger), 25 percent Temne tribe (Sierra Leone), 25 percent Bantu tribe (South Africa), with 5 percent traces of Celtic Scotland and a mishmash of other unidentified groups.   

Both memoir and call to arms, Tribes explores both the benign and malign effects of our need to belong. How this need - genetically programmed and socially acquired - can manifest itself in positive ways, collaboratively achieving great things that individuals alone cannot. And yet how, in recent years, globalisation and digitisation have led to new, more pernicious kinds of tribalism. This book is a fascinating and perceptive analysis of not only the way the world works but also the way we really are.

©2019 David Lammy (P)2019 Hachette Audio UK

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I listened to learn

I have historically felt anger towards David Lammy "ranting about racism ". I have identified my "subtle " racism born out of my lifes journey. I wanted to look at it. Lammy has great insight, is not a racist but an educated decent Englishman. A great listen

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Boring

David Lammy insults the listeners intelligence. Thinks he's African, Ghanaian and as English as anyone.

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An engaging and thought provoking journey through the ideas of belonging

David Lammy is a professional orator and as a result pulls you along in, what some times can be a disparate progression of ideas. Stick with it however and the final chapters reward you with a peak at a utopian ideal that though not compleat (and could be viewed as unachievable) has the kernel of a future that I would want to be part of. It’s refreshing to see a current and active politician being honest about his own views while responding to none partisan evidence and situations. It’s a good book that’s left me with plenty to think about.

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An optimistic, grounded and convincing map for the future

This book is one of the most accessible insights into some of the most divisive issues facing the world today that I have come across. It’s particular focus on UK and English politics, specifically in addressing our lurch to tribal tendencies post Brexit is positive, and seeks permanent change through what appear to be logical and well argued historical and current examples. I would commend it to anyone who wants to understand why we are the way we are, and is not scared of hearing views contrary to their own. It is well written, not overly partisan, and always recognises the other side of the argument, but, crucially, is not afraid of addressing the most topical and contentious issues facing us today. Best book I have read in years. Genuinely - I was surprised.

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Meh

If you have half a brain and aren't hard left or right wing, then you won't learn anything new about politics - though David's own story is interesting in itself. He's a good orator, but the problem is that there's little new to learn from it. Centrism has died on its arse and (I say this as one of the few centrists remaining) perhaps this is why - there's nothing groundbreaking and very little to get passionate about. It's just all so obvious to those who aren't stupid enough to prescribe to divisive party politics.

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Much more than you'd expect

Lammy identifies the root causes of a lot of problems and gives solutions welcoming feedback

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A sorely needed book

This is, at times a bit repetitive and verbose but it is a very well argued book with some good coverage of political and social history. The postscript is by far the best part of the book. Recommended at a difficult time when we were exhausted from the internal fights of Brexit and have now come into a pandemic. This is a book about hope for a better future for us all at a time that we sorely need it.

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A masterful study of contemporary Britain

David Lammy delves deep into identity, race and privilege - essential for anyone interested in how we got to where we are. Also an insight of the life of a high profile politician from the ‘wrong side of the tracks’.. My respect for David already high, is now sky high.