Conversation Starters: Race in literature, Race in Britain, Race in “Feminism”

In 2014, journalist Reni Eddo-Lodge wrote a blog post to try and express her frustration with the way race and racism are discussed in Britain. The post, “Why I’m No Longer Talking to White People About Race”, triggered an immediate and intense response from both white and black voices. In her first book, Eddo-Lodge […]

via #43 Why I’m No Longer Talking to White People About Race by Reni Eddo-Lodge (2017) — One Year, One Hundred Books

I was trying to take a mid day’s nap when I spent my time sifting through the many works that are WordPress and I came across this post which sparked something within me to share my thoughts about three different topic areas. Race in literature, race in Britain, and race in “Feminism.” But, before I can begin to blog about those three topics allow me to first share my thoughts about this article.

It is always interesting to read about the way that race and culture is perceived by white people. of course, being an African American girl I have my experiences with the role of integrating myself in a society where I am a minority, but I always wonder what the majority believes.

This article moved me because it was written from the point of view of a white person who appreciates the conversation of race and the way that relations are established between differences.

She was critiquing the work of a journalist, Reni Eddo-Lodge, who wrote about the many justifications as to why she no longer wanted to discuss race with white people. She describes her experiences as being “disinterested, defensive, or deflective” which shocked me seeing as though I attend a predominantly white institution.

Here at Virginia Commonwealth University, in the heart of Richmond, I have found so many scholarly white Americans that are liberal and embrace the idea of culture. They want to see change happen and are not afraid to have discussion about history, policies, and progressive activism in order to reinvent the way we perceive color in the world.

Don’t get me wrong, every once in a blue moon, I do encounter the one professor who still has their biases and stereotypes, but for the most part my predominantly white institution has helped me to not be afraid to speak up about micro-aggressions that occur on a day to day basis in the world of a minority.

And, just as the case has been made that we forget about colorism in other parts of the world I think it’s equally important to add that we forget about the various kinds of white people that exist too.

You see, in a certain areas there are whites who are more open to the discussion than others, there are some who are more or less radical, and then there are others that don’t want anything to do with the topic.

With only having read the title of the book, I would love to dive deeper into her argument to see just how Eddo-Lodge makes a couple of her claims. However, without the insertion of a qualifier it can be viewed as borderline racist against those of Caucasian descent. Not all white people will be disinterested, defensive, or deflective when it comes to racial conversations.

And more than that, colorism is a global issue that we have to talk about. Because yes, race in Britain is a serious issue seeing as though they only reaped the benefits of the work that slaves were doing. Just how the blogger of One Year, One Hundred Books, has made the case about continuing the dialogue, I feel that there needs to be more conversations that include a global audience. Not just what we know of in America.

Overall, it was an amazing review of the book and I enjoyed reading the critical thought. I can’t wait to write my next three posts so stay tuned!

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