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Reni Eddo-Lodge is a London-based, award-winning journalist. She has written for the New York Times, the Voice, Daily Telegraph, Guardian, Independent, Stylist, Inside Housing, the Pool, Dazed and Confused, and the New Humanist. She is the winner of a Women of the World Bold Moves Award, an MHP 30 to Watch Award and was chosen as one of the Top 30 Young People in Digital Media by the Guardian in 2014. She has also been listed in Elle's 100 Inspirational Women list, and The Root's 30 Black Viral Voices Under 30. She contributed to The Good Immigrant. Why I'm No Longer Talking to White People about Race is her first book. It won the 2018 British Book Awards Non-Fiction Narrative Book of the Year, the 2018 Jhalak Prize, was chosen as Foyles Non-Fiction Book of the Year and Blackwell's Non-Fiction Book of the Year, was longlisted for the Baillie Gifford Prize and the Orwell Prize and shortlisted for the Books Are My Bag Readers Award for Non-Fiction. renieddolodge.co.uk / @renireni
I’m really not sure where to start. A book has never held my attention so much, nor has one made me think so hard. In a good, good way, but in an uncomfortable way. About being white, about white privilege, about how white is the default, how white is neutral. Having always seen myself as an anti-racist, I am embarrassed by how little I knew about black British history until I read this book. How little I knew about things that happened on my doorstep in my home town of Liverpool, originally Britain’s biggest slave port and where I live now in multicultural London. How I thought I understood but realised that unless you have experienced racism, you can never really understand. Unless we acknowledge that as white people we enjoy systemic privilege, how can we ever make a difference? As a white mother of mixed race children, the section talking about colour blindness was frighteningly enlightening and it has really made me consider what my children’s needs might be as mixed race kids. Everyone should read this book. It’s so well-researched, so powerfully written, so personal and yet so eloquent and poignant. It’s an enlightening and essential book about race that gets you thinking about the inherent racism in our nation: the fear of the black planet, feminism and class and race all intertwined. In February 2014 Reni Eddo-Lodge published a post on her blog on the topic of race, about the vast majority of white people refusing to accept the legitimacy of structural racism and its symptoms. As Reni states, it wasn’t a cry for help or a plea for white people’s understanding, it was about self-preservation. This book is the result of five years’ worth of awkward conversations following the publication on that blog. Within the pages Remi quotes the late Terry Pratchett who once said: “There’s no justice. Just us.” This book is a tool, it’s an education, it’s a call to action. Please read it.