Book review: How America’s hope of racial harmony died in a hail of bullets

American Whitelash is a sobering, intelligent and timely examination of how the election of Obama as the country’s first black president sparked a vicious backlash of white supremacism

Black Lives Matter protesters in New York’s Times Square. Picture Getty Images

Barack Obama’s famous 2008 campaign ‘Hope’ poster was designed by Shepard Fairey in less than a day. After Obama’s victory, the iconic image was acquired by the Smithsonian Institution for its National Portrait Gallery.

Other versions of the poster incorporated the words ‘change’ and ‘progress’, but it was hope that Wesley Lowery and millions of other Americans felt on election night. Revisiting it, he writes, is like venturing “into a world that feels foreign . ...