Good political news is few and far between these days, so the announcement that Sen. Kamala Harris will be publishing her first memoir, The Truths We Hold: An American Journey, with Penguin Press in January 2019 is certainly a bright spot. Harris has emerged as one of the biggest (and undoubtedly most inspiring) players in U.S. politics post-Trump election, using her own Twitter account to speak out against the administration's policies, from the separation of families at the border under the Zero-Tolerance immigration policy to the attempts to sabotage the Affordable Care Act, and to encourage political engagement among her over one million followers. According to The New York Times, Harris's upcoming memoir may strongly suggest her intent to run in the 2020 presidential election — though the senator has not made any official announcement.
According to Penguin, the book will be a mixture of memoir and current-events primer, and it will include stories both from Harris's upbringing in Oakland, and from her political life, and it will touch on her own guiding principles. The daughter of immigrants, Harris was raised in a community that cared deeply about social justice; her parents — an esteemed economist from Jamaica and an admired cancer researcher from India — met as activists in the civil rights movement when they were graduate students at Berkeley. Readers will follow Harris from her childhood, revealing her early passion for justice, through her journey to becoming a prosecutor, deputy district attorney, and eventually a U.S. senator.
Scott Moyers, the vice president and publisher of Penguin Press, is quoted in The New York Times saying that Harris's back story was especially compelling, including her “fascinating and formidable” mother, the first person in her family to leave India. With the current conversation surrounding immigrants and immigration in the U.S., Harris's story could not have come at a better time.
In an era when many of our current political memoirs are either looking back at the Obama years or are attempting to grapple with our current state of government unrest, it is exciting to see a highly respected and powerful woman of color and daughter of immigrants tell her own story and offer some hope for the future of our country — whether she runs for President or not. Though The Truths We Hold won't be out until Jan. 2019, you can pre-order it now.