Posted on: July 2, 2024 Posted by: Christina Bronner Comments: 1
Kamala Harris, The Motherland, and Me by Dr. Nii-Quartelai Quartey
Dr. Nii-Quartelai Quartey, a political journalist, had an opportunity of a lifetime as he was able to gain a fresh perspective on global politics, while traveling alongside Vice President Kamala Harris. After traveling to the Motherland of Africa, he has taken us on a journey of self-discovery and political revelation through his new book, “Kamala, The Motherland, and Me.” Upscale had the opportunity to gain insight on his journey. 
What inspired you to become an author?
Dr. Quartey: When I was six years old, my parents took me and my brothers to hear the newly freed Nelson Mandela speak at the Oakland Coliseum in the Bay Area. My young mind could not understand the fullness of what I was witnessing but I did understand this man decided to turn injustice into a call for unity in pursuit of something better. Mandela lived a life of consequence and on that day he inspired me to find a way to do the same. Writing Kamala, The Motherland, and Me is my way of sharing a consequential journey in hopes of elevating the conversation about the Vice President, Africa, and the interconnectedness of the future of Black people across the diaspora. 
Over the years, reading the works of great authors like Toni Morrison, James Baldwin, Maya Angelou, Keith Boykin, bell hooks, and Ta-Nehisi Coates helped me to find my voice and build my confidence as an author. My gratitude to each of them abounds. 
Tell us about your book.
Dr. Quartey: Kamala, The Motherland, and Me is both a personal and professional memoir that invites you on a journey of self-discovery and political revelation. You are invited to join me aboard Air Force Two, where I accompany Vice President Kamala Harris and U.S. Press Corp. on a historic voyage to Africa, the homeland of my father. I did not expect to write a book but when I returned from the trip and reviewed my notes, I felt a duty to offer the world a fresh perspective on Vice President Harris’s leadership and challenge assumptions about Africa’s place in global politics.

Through personal anecdotes, political analysis, and expert interviews I delve into Vice President Harris’s visit to Ghana, Tanzania, and Zambia, offering insights through the lens of race, gender, and sexuality. Toni Morrison once said, “Write the book you want to read.” Kamala, The Motherland, and Me is that book I’ve been waiting to read. I’m thrilled to share it with the world. 

Tell us about “A More Perfect Union”.
Dr. Quartey: I can hardly believe I’ve hosted and produced over 260 episodes of “A More Perfect Union” KBLA Talk Radio Show and Podcast in collaboration with my mentor and Executive Producer, the legendary Tavis Smiley. From the White House to your house, weekdays we offer our community of leaders, learners, and listeners a daily national political news digest, amplify the work of changemakers on the frontlines, while so-called leaders go out of their way to ban book we uplift the work of authors, and pass the mic to industry leaders saying the quiet part out loud. In the age of deep fakes, misinformation, and disinformation campaigns targeting Black and other communities of color, I consider my show a valiant effort to push back with news, information, and expert analysis our audience can trust while we all valiantly do our part to build a more perfect union. 
How did you know what to do with your voice?
Dr. Quartey: Over the years, reading the works of great authors like Toni Morrison, James Baldwin, Maya Angelou, Keith Boykin, bell hooks, and Ta-Nehisi Coates helped me to find my voice and build my confidence as an author.  Each of them are historians, teachers, sociologists, communitarian, and compassionate in their craft. Ingesting their work helped me to better understand the range of my voice as a scholar, advocate, and journalist in the public square. They freed me from what might otherwise be the invisible confines of authorship. My gratitude to each of them abounds. 
What advice do you have for someone who seeks to become an advocate?
Dr. Quartey: Hurt people, hurt people. Healed people, heal people. Make it your highest priority to begin to heal the wounds that keep you from understanding the fullness of who you are and your capacity to overcome. We have far too many unhealed leaders limiting their ability to show up in the world. I often tell my students before you change anything, you must understand who you are as an agent of change. This is not a simple homework assignment and not for the faint of heart but instead the work of a lifetime. Love for humanity starts with loving thy self and loving thy neighbor, no skipping ahead.
Share one of your favorite memories in traveling to Africa with Vice President Kamala Harris.
Dr. Quartey: One of my favorite memories is traveling with Vice President Harris and the press corp. was in my father’s homeland of Ghana. It wasn’t lost on me that I was among descendants of enslaved Africans who were on a US marine helicopter leaving Accra en route to Cape Coast Castle to pay our respect. Talk about our ancestors’ wildest dreams! Those ancestors include my father Joseph K. Quartey, grandfather Rev. Prophet James Quartey, and grandmother Helena Baidoo.  In fact, I could feel the presence of my father on that helicopter as I reflected on the fact that I had the opportunity to see his homeland from a perch he likely never imagined for himself let alone his youngest son.  
Given the climate of our country, how do you stay motivated?
Dr. Quartey: The history of our country and the history of the world are filled with plenty of examples of progression and regression. I don’t let the regression take my eye off the prize – leaving the world better than I found it. I believe resilience is our inheritance and passing resilience stories to future generations through my work and deeds, keeps me motivated to keep on, keepin’ on! 
Where can we find your book?
Dr. Quartey: Kamala, The Motherland, and Me is available for pre-order now on Amazon and Barnes & Noble. The book will be released on July 23, 2024 and available at most book retailers. Purchase it today, take the journey, follow me @DrNiiQuartelai and stay tuned for book tour details so we can talk about it in a city near you. 
We hope this inspires you to take your own journey of self-discovery and revelation in your field of passion. Heal, find your voice, and become an advocate of change in your own way.
Leave your comment and let us know what you think.

1 people reacted on this

Leave a Comment