No author writes a book without the support of others. First, I wish to thank my friend and literary agent Jacqueline Hackett for pushing me to take my casual thoughts on black conservatives more seriously. I also wish to thank the fine staff of editors and assistants at Beacon Press, especially Gayatri Patnaik and Tracy Ahlquist, and authors Cornel West, Debra Dickerson, Peniel Joseph, and Ira Katznelson for their gracious contributions to this project.
Beyond these individuals, there were a wide range of folks who contributed substantively to this project, provided crucial motivation, or otherwise enabled its completion. They include Paul Butler, Spencer Overton, Fred Lawrence, Roger Trangsrud, Cynthia Lee, Bob Cottrol, Dan Solove, Roger Fairfax, Shavar Jeffries, Kent Syverud, Randall Kennedy, Gerald Early, John Baugh, Tomiko Brown-Nagin, F. Scott Kieff, Troy Paredes, David Konig, John Haley, Dan Ellis, Kimberly Jade Norwood, Peter Joy, Bob Pollack, Phil Berwick, Prashant Kolluri, and those members of the law faculty of Washington University in St. Louis who participated in the faculty workshop where I first presented my ideas on black conservatism for public consumption.
I also wish to thank a special group of friends and neighbors who, in some way or another, ensured that I remained focused on this project, despite a multitude of distractions. They include Diana Embrey, Gretchen and Alex Placzek, Tracey Johnson, Elif and Murat Bilgin, Melvin Davis, Reuben Charles, and Hugh and Linda Weisenstein.
In addition, I wish to thank my parents, Alfred and Mary Bracey, for their ongoing support and patience. And I am grateful to longtime (notice