Date of review: July 6, 2022
A few years before writing this book, Reni Eddo-Lodge vowed never to speak to white people about race again because of the denial, defensiveness and disconnection she faced when doing so — she felt it was emotionally exhausting and dangerous. Despite this vow, she decided to re-engage with the subject, and that’s why she wrote this book. I am extremely grateful that she did it, as I feel it has been profoundly educational.
Eddo-Lodge’s work was the first book that completely opened my eyes to the reality of racism. I had always considered myself knowledgeable about race: I was passionate about anti-racism, and I was convinced that I was, by no means, racist. Thanks to her book, I discovered concepts that I’d never learned before, such as white fragility, implicit bias, the realities of Black British history, and all the various ways in which race intersects with categories such as class and gender. Without this book, I would be much more ignorant than I am now. It has made me see that the work I need to do in order to be an active anti-racist is never over: I can never consider myself ‘done’ with this work, it is a continuous process one has to commit to.
I highly recommend this challenging work: it is edifying for anyone seeking further education about the complexities of race, but is also instructive about how those seeking to be empathetic allies can and must do better.
Why I’m No Longer Talking to White People About Race by Reni Eddo-Lodge is available to purchase on Amazon UK