Rising out of Hatred

The Awakening of a Former White Nationalist
Narrated by: Scott Brick, Eli Saslow
Length: 9 hrs and 2 mins
4.5 out of 5 stars (880 ratings)

$14.95/month after 30 days. Cancel anytime.

OR
In cart

Publisher's Summary

From a Pulitzer Prize-winning reporter, the powerful story of how a prominent white supremacist changed his heart and mind

Derek Black grew up at the epicenter of white nationalism. His father founded Stormfront, the largest racist community on the Internet. His godfather, David Duke, was a KKK Grand Wizard. By the time Derek turned 19, he had become an elected politician with his own daily radio show - already regarded as the "the leading light" of the burgeoning white nationalist movement. "We can infiltrate," Derek once told a crowd of white nationalists. "We can take the country back." 

Then he went to college. Derek had been homeschooled by his parents, steeped in the culture of white supremacy, and he had rarely encountered diverse perspectives or direct outrage against his beliefs. At New College of Florida, he continued to broadcast his radio show in secret each morning, living a double life until a classmate uncovered his identity and sent an email to the entire school: "Derek Black...white supremacist, radio host...New College student???" 

The ensuing uproar overtook one of the most liberal colleges in the country. Some students protested Derek's presence on campus, forcing him to reconcile for the first time with the ugliness his beliefs. Other students found the courage to reach out to him, including an Orthodox Jew who invited Derek to attend weekly Shabbat dinners. It was because of those dinners - and the wide-ranging relationships formed at that table - that Derek started to question the science, history, and prejudices behind his worldview. As white nationalism infiltrated the political mainstream, Derek decided to confront the damage he had done. 

Rising out of Hatred tells the story of how white-supremacist ideas migrated from the far-right fringe to the White House through the intensely personal saga of one man who eventually disavowed everything he was taught to believe, at tremendous personal cost. With great empathy and narrative verve, Eli Saslow asks what Derek's story can tell us about America's increasingly divided nature. This is a book to help us understand the American moment and to help us better understand one another.

©2018 Eli Saslow (P)2018 Random House Audio

Critic Reviews

Rising Out of Hatred is a disturbing look at the spread of that extremism - and how it is planted and cultivated in the fertile soil of American bigotry. And yet, Saslow’s vivid storytelling also conveys that during this period of deepening racial division, there is the possibility of redemption." (Washington Post)

“The story of Derek Black is the human being at his gutsy, self-reflecting, revolutionary best, told by one of America’s best storytellers at his very best. Rising out of Hatred proclaims if the successor to the white nationalist movement can forsake his ideological upbringing, can rebirth himself in antiracism, then we can too no matter the personal cost. This book is an inspiration.” (Ibram X. Kendi, National Book Award-winning author of Stamped from the Beginning: The Definitive History of Racist Ideas in America)

“This is a double portrait: of a worse America, and of a better one. Neither of them has yet come to pass, but each of them might. Thanks to reporting that is both truthful and humane, we see in one young man's decision a guide to the choices that face a generation and a country." (Timothy Snyder, New York Times best-selling author of On Tyranny and The Road to Unfreedom)

Editor's Pick

A personal look at the evolution of white nationalism
"From the rise of David Duke in the '80s and '90s to the "All Lives Matter" protests of today, Rising Out of Hatred covers the history (and spectrum) of white nationalism in the United States. With a magnifying glass on Derek Black’s personal relationship to the movement, Saslow’s writing doesn’t necessarily encourage sympathy. But it does try to humanize, offering a powerful lesson in empathy and change. As the heir-apparent to Stormfront and white supremacist politics, Derek’s situation is by no means a one-size-fits-all example. Even so, given the current political climate and news cycle, it feels more than relevant to any listener. "
Michael C., Audible Editor

More from the same

What members say
Average Customer Ratings
Overall
  • 4.5 out of 5 stars
  • 5 Stars
    691
  • 4 Stars
    148
  • 3 Stars
    30
  • 2 Stars
    8
  • 1 Stars
    3
Performance
  • 4.5 out of 5 stars
  • 5 Stars
    593
  • 4 Stars
    162
  • 3 Stars
    44
  • 2 Stars
    6
  • 1 Stars
    2
Story
  • 4.5 out of 5 stars
  • 5 Stars
    642
  • 4 Stars
    118
  • 3 Stars
    32
  • 2 Stars
    10
  • 1 Stars
    2

Reviews - Please select the tabs below to change the source of reviews.

Sort by:
Filter by:
  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars

Great book. Very relatable as a former racist southerner.

I can relate, somewhat, to Derek’s story. I was never a white-nationalist, but I did hold a common southern cultural attitude against minorities and homosexuals. I remember being angry when Obama was elected, playing racist Johnny Rebel and old David Alan Coe songs, following the Tea Party movement, defending the Confederacy, and listening exclusively to Fox News and conservative talk radio. It really wasn’t until I begrudgingly watched a documentary called The Brainwashing of My Dad and began reading books not written by Dinesh D’Souza, Ann Coulter, or Jerome Corsi, that my racist armor began to chip away. Now, just a few years later, I am also ashamed of my past. I can’t imagine what it must be like for Derek after listening to his story, but I’m proud of him and I hope he inspires more people to leave that hateful ideology. Sorry to ramble, but this book really hit home for me and I can recommend it enough, especially if you’re from the South.

40 people found this helpful

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars

Listened in 1 day

This was one of those books that I honestly felt like I could not stop listening to. The narrator was awesome and did the book justice. It is terrifying to see the rise of the alt right and their views becoming more acceptable/mainstream.

I wouldn’t consider myself a liberal, but after listening to this book and thinking of our current president, I want to distance myself from the “right” as much as possible. This book has also motivated me to start digging deeper and learning what I can to counter arguments like “white genocide” (even typing that phrase makes me cringe) with facts. I applaud the friends in this book for teaching him a perspective through tolerance, friendship, patience and love.

6 people found this helpful

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars

Essential reading in this time

What were the neo-nazis in Charlottesville thinking? What’s their, and the current administration’s, endgame? White nationalism is scarier and more influential now than ever. This window into the paranoid mass delusion of white nationalists is essential reading given their friends in the White house and their rising power. Derek Black’s awakening from the pseudoscientific trance fueling fears of “white genocide” provides important lessons for fighting back against a movement that seeks nothing short of total white dominance that spares the suffering of no one.

7 people found this helpful

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars

Such an important book of the era

This, imo, will be one of the most important texts of this era. The heir apparent to the white supremacist movement in America, through exposure, changed his beliefs and renounced WS. The book concisely and effectively weaves into the narrative, how President Trump co-oped the same rhetoric and used the same fears of white Americans, to ascend to the top of the Republican ticket and into the White House. It explains how your family members came to be sharing coded WS propaganda on FB. Most importantly though it is a story of hope. If the God son of David Duke can come to see the world in a different light, there's a chance for us all.

13 people found this helpful

  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars

Amazing hopeful story

I first heard this story on Terry Gross fresh air. The book was every bit as good as it seemed. In many ways it’s given me hope that I did not expect .
At moments it was predictable but overall totally compelling and riveting I couldn’t stop listening to it.

2 people found this helpful

  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    4 out of 5 stars
  • D
  • 02-05-19

Interesting journey

This is a really interesting book. What I like about the story is that Derek Black's evolution was thoughtful and slow, which makes it feel genuine. But, by far, the most remarkable person in this story is Derek's college friend who invited him to Sabbath dinners every week after he found out that he was a white nationalist. His patience and persistence, along with his belief that his friend could change, is truly something to behold. Even when Derek remained a white nationalist for years after he started attending these weekly dinners, his friend never gave up on him. I don't know if I could have been that open and loving.

2 people found this helpful

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars

One of the best nonfiction books of the year

Important, well-told story. Narrator was excellent as well. My only complaint is that the book wasn't longer.

5 people found this helpful

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    3 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars

Evil and the Damage Done

A nearly perfect must-read, this book is both thought-provoking and enlightening on the racist, anti-Semitic, xenophobic, homophobic, backwards ideas of white supremacy and its propaganda in the U.S.A., its preachers and flock--these perpetrators of hate, perpetuators of evil--as well as on how some of these elemental myths and bullshit were appropriated and continue to be used by a U.S. president as a means of fueling hatred among his base and playing on the many whites' fears of those who aren't like them (in their skin color, nationality, religion, sexuality).

Much more importantly though, this outstanding book reminded me of the benefits and blessing of a higher education that includes the liberal arts. Further, it stands as a tribute to those college classmates of a young white nationalist leader, who are Jewish, gay, or of another race, courageous, kind and selfless enough to befriend this enemy and help to slowly and eventually transform his mind, via friendship and the art of gentle, subtle and patient persuasion.

4 people found this helpful

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars

Fascinating story reads like a "cant put down" fic

the story is shocking and then hopeful and right now we need hope! I usually don't understand how this political situation could have happened two years later still dumbfounded this book at least helped me to understand a little of the current history. The writing is awesome and just hope the best for the characters.

4 people found this helpful

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars

I Never finish books this quickly!

This story was intriguing, shocking, and enlightening in so many ways. I highly recommend it!

1 person found this helpful