Gil L. Robertson IV is one of America’s foremost authorities on African-American pop culture. As a journalist, author, lecturer and media consultant, he is responsible for literary works and intellectual properties that provide platforms for social change and personal growth.
Robertson is the editor of the best-selling anthologies “Family Affair: What It Means to Be African-American Today,” and “Not in My Family: AIDS in the African American Community,” both nominated for NAACP Image Awards for Outstanding Nonfiction. He is also the author of “Writing as a Tool of Empowerment,” a resource guide for aspiring journalists, and he’s a regular contributor to The African-American Almanac.
And he is a popular lecturer who’s speaks on issues that impact professional growth strategies and personal development. And he is a co-founder and President of the African American Film Critics Association, as well as the founder of the Robertson Treatment’s Media Workshop, an annual journalism initiative presented at the Auburn Avenue Research Library in Atlanta, GA and the Schomburg Center for Research in Black Culture in New York, NY.
Robertson earned a B.A. degree in Political Science from Cal State Los Angeles. He is the founder and editor of the nationally syndicated Arts & Lifestyle column, the Robertson Treatment. Now in its 15th year, the column appears in 30 newspapers across the country boasting a readership in excess of 2 million. He is a professional member of the National Press Club, The National Association of Black Journalists, The National Academy of Recording Arts & Science, The National Academy of Television Arts and Science and The Motion Picture Academy.
Did Our Love Go: Love and Relationships in the African-American Community
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Gil L. Robertson IV (Editor)
Paperback: 400 pages
Publisher: Agate Bolden (February 12, 2013)
Product Dimensions: 5.9 x 0.8 x 8.9 inches
Where Did Our Love Go?, an anthology of essays written by many major public
figures and celebrities, will explore the substantive issues related to
marital problem in the African-American community. From the "my baby's mama"
syndrome to the more serious implications of what a generation of
single-parent households will mean to future generations, this comprehensive
collection will provide an in-depth discourse on the trends and issues that
have caused the problematic behaviors within African-American relationships
to persist with little sign of relief. The book will consist of a total of
40 essays divided equally into 4 lifestyle categories (single, married,
divorced, and widowed), to present a wide cross section of perspectives on
Marriage plays an essential role in maintaining the vitality and character of a community, so it is deeply unsettling for many African Americans to find that the value of this institution has lost its allure. While marriage among African Americans has always fallen below the average of other population segments, the gap today has grown so pronounced that the subject has sparked an intense national dialogue.
A 2006 Washington Post article, “Is Marriage for White People,” created waves of controversy on the issue. In 2010, Nightline dedicated an entire broadcast to this growing crisis. The marriage gap in Black America has become such an open secret that it’s now the source of endless bad jokes and prime time reality shows. The statistics even back this up, as according to the U.S. Census, 43.3% of black men and 41.9% of black women in America have never been married, and the rate of decline is nearly twice the national average.
Marriage is a rite of passage that is fundamental to every culture, which underscores the tremendous need for an active dialogue to take place that will lay a foundation for discovery. With essays from 50 Cent, Viola Davis, Jabari Asim, Darnell Williams, Faith Evans, Mara Brock Akil, and more, Where Did Our Love Go? will ignite the fight for that conversation to begin.
Affair: What It Means to Be African-American Today
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Paperback: 432 pages
Publisher: Agate Bolden (March 20, 2009)
Product Dimensions: 8.9 x 6 x 0.9 inches
"Family Affair is about who we are and how our past has shaped us. It reflects the prism of the individual
and collective black experience in contemporary America, which is just as varied and colorful as the different shades of our skin. Being black in America is not a one size fits all idea."
-Terrie Williams, author of Black Pain
Original essays from Carolyn Kilpatrick, Isaac Hayes, Beverly Johnson, Max Siegel, Cathy Hughes, Bishop Paul S. Morton, Reverend Otis Moss, Ruby Dee, Thurbert Baker and others underscore a new era in American life
Veteran lifestyle journalist/editor Gil Robertson is back with a new anthology that explores 'identity' within the African American community in the new millennium. His new book, Family Affair: What It Means to Be African American Today - the follow up to his bestselling 2006 anthology Not in My Family: AIDS in the African American Community cleaves thought the physical, social, political and historical characteristics that have come to define the African-American community and offers up a multitude of perspectives on how to embrace a more positive future. Through personal stories and essays by contributors representing various elements of the black community, the book delves into an identity that's been thrown off course due to a number of external and internal factors. Family Affair is divided into five sections representing the key features that influence the African American identity: Family, Culture, Relationships, Community and Self. Each section features religious leaders, institutional leaders, elected officials, and celebrities from the worlds of music, film and broadcasting ' as well as plenty of ordinary people with extraordinary stories. Family Affair offers revelations and insights on topics that the majority of African American only talk about in secret. The goal: to stimulate dialogue that supports reflection, healing and understanding.
Family Affair is the most up-to-the-moment book yet on the
Essay highlights from Family Affair: What It Means to Be African American Today
Soul music legend Isaac Hayes:
I eventually dropped out of school out of plain embarrassment. It was very difficult to do, because I really liked school and I loved to learn. I always liked reading and unlike the kids of today, it was anything but an interruption of what I wanted to do. It was what I wanted to do. But the shoes that I wore bore cardboard in their bottoms to cover up gaping holes. It wasn't long before the girls noticed and my self-consciousness outgrew my desire to attend classes. I didn't have any clothes and in an odd sort of way, I literally couldn't afford to go to school. What saved me, ironically, was music. My music teachers took a special interest in me, as I'd taken a special interest in music. It was always my salvation. Even when I was picking cotton in Covington, music was an escape from the scorching sun and the laborious tasks I was up against. I'd sing a song or hum a tune and imagine myself in another place "maybe a juke joint" and all the pain would go away. It was a temporary fix, but it worked every time. But this time, the pain was too deep. It hurt too much.
TV One CEO Cathy Hughes: In order to protect our history and legacy, we have to take ownership of it. It's our images, our news, our chronological story, and our inheritance. We cannot expect other groups, be it intentionally or unintentionally, to accurately describe, portray and empower us. We need to document, preserve and build our own stories, from our own perspectives. A lot of the omission from history books that we classify as racism is actually just ignorance on the part of the writers who do not understand our culture ' so it's just easier for them not to tell the story at all. Completely eliminating us from certain accounts and concentrating on their own is often just plain lack of knowledge. Self-preservation is the first law of nature, so every culture looks out for their 'own' first. That's what we should be about, but whenever Black people practice it, there seems to always be a cry of alarm. Perhaps guilt is the reason for that concern.
in my Family, Aids in the African-American Community
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Publisher: Agate (2006)
long last, the time has come: the time for African American people to face the scourge that has affected it disproportionately for years, and to break through the cultural inhibitions that have prevented them from dealing with it head on. This landmark collection of personal essays, stories, brief memoirs, and polemics from a broad swath of black Americans-whether prominent figures from the worlds of politics, entertainment, or sports, or just ordinary folks with extraordinary -stories whose lives have been touched by HIV/AIDS-will galvanize public attention around this issue.
Author and journalist Gil Robertson first conceived this "gripping and heartfelt patchwork," as he calls it, when his older brother was diagnosed with HIV. As he writes in his introduction, "As I've watched my family move through the various stages of his illness and hear similar stories from others, I began to realize that my family was not alone. There are countless other families waging the same fight with this disease, and I wanted to connect with them so we would feel even more so empowered to wage battle."
Robertson has enlisted a remarkable group of contributors to give voice to their impassioned thoughts and feelings. A partial list includes: from politics, Rep. Jesse Jackson Jr., former US Surgeon General Joycelyn Elders and Al Sharpton; from music, Patti LaBelle; from film and TV, Mo'Nique, Jasmine Guy, Hill Harper, and Sheryl Lee Ralph; and from letters, Randall Robinson and Omar Tyree-among many, many others.
Where Did Our Love Go? - Love and Relationships in the African American Community
May 19, 2011
Dear Perspective Contributor,
In searching for the next hot topic for my African American anthology series, I feel compelled to delve into the growing marriage gag that exists in Black America. According to the 2010 U.S. Census, 43.3 percent of black men and 41.9 percent of black women in America have never been married. While it's true that the overall marriage rate among every population segment in the U.S. has declined, for blacks, it is double the national average. Marriage plays such an essential role in maintaining the vitality and character of a community, so it's deeply unsettling to find that the value of this institution has lost its allure for so many.
Where Did Our Love Go? - Love and Relationships in the African American Community, will explore the substantive issues related to marital relations in the African American community. From the possible repercussions feminist movement, to the 'my baby's mama' syndrome, the goal for this project is to explore the state of love relationships and examine what makes them work. This anthology will provide an in-depth discourse and SOLUTIONS on the trends and issues that surround this issue. To present a wide cross section of perspectives on the subject, the book will consist of a total of 40 essays divided equally into 3 lifestyle categories (single, married, and divorced). Select subjects will also be asked to participate in a cable network documentary that will be released alongside the book
I would like for you to share your thoughts and feeling on this
provocative subject as a contributor to this project. Your essay
should be anywhere between 1200 ' 2500 words in length and would
need to be delivered no later than Friday, September 16, 2011.
I look forward to work with you to create an organized and constructive dialogue on this issue. Please take a minute to consider this opportunity and get back to me with your thoughts.
Gil Robertson, IV