Kenyatta Mathews, the partner to Ta Nehisi Coates, was a student at Howard University when they met. Kenyatta was raised in a white neighborhood. In the beginning, she is referred to as the girl from Chicago. She was raised by her mother, single-handed and did not know the identity of her father, which was common among the people Coates knows. She falls in love with Ta Nehisi Coates whom she meets at Howard. When she was 24, she accidentally gets pregnant with Samori. The two are pressured to marry each other, but they decide on not doing it until later on. Kenyatta is a free-spirited woman who decided to abandon the dream early on. She is enthusiastic, and her life seems to be an adventure. She takes a trip to Paris and convinces the author to go there and experience the change in lifestyle. Kenyatta is portrayed as a strong woman in control of her decisions. She is a source of support to Coates and also their family. Although she is not featured much in the book, she challenges the knowledge that Coates had about the African culture and himself.