Published by Bloomsbury Circus on June 1st 2017
Genres: Non-Fiction, Political
'One of the most important books of 2017' Nikesh Shukla, editor of The Good ImmigrantA powerful and provocative argument on the role that race and racism play in modern Britain, by award-winning journalist Reni Eddo-Lodge
In 2014, award-winning journalist Reni Eddo-Lodge wrote about her frustration with the way that discussions of race and racism in Britain were being led by those who weren't affected by it. She posted a piece on her blog, entitled: 'Why I'm No Longer Talking to White People About Race'.
Her words hit a nerve. The post went viral and comments flooded in from others desperate to speak up about their own experiences. Galvanised by this clear hunger for open discussion, she decided to dig into the source of these feelings.
Exploring issues from eradicated black history to the political purpose of white dominance, whitewashed feminism to the inextricable link between class and race, Reni Eddo-Lodge offers a timely and essential new framework for how to see, acknowledge and counter racism. It is a searing, illuminating, absolutely necessary exploration of what it is to be a person of colour in Britain today.
This book is important for many reasons, and while it is written very much from the perspective of Reni Eddo-Lodge’s experience as a black woman growing up in the UK, there is much about it that I recognise. Particularly pertinent in the book is her presentation of white privilege and the way in which discussions that step outside of what is considered to be acceptable by liberals results in demonisation. I have a great deal of both sympathy and empathy for what she has been through as she has sought to assert the truth of herself – sometimes a thing that is too difficult for others to hear:
“Some white people, all white people, or none – it wouldn’t have mattered in the end. The aim of these commentators – whether they knew it or not – wasn’t to have an honest conversation about racism. It was to obscure, to derail, and to ardently avoid the wider issue.”3