On Wednesday, various news outlets confirmed what post-racial turducken Rachel Dolezal alluded to in her recent interview on the Today show. She did indeed receive a deal to pen a book about race.
From The Guardian:
Rachel Dolezal, the civil-rights activist who was accused of misrepresenting herself as black last year, has been signed to write a book about race.
Dolezal told NBC talk show Today on Tuesday that the book, which Entertainment Weekly reported had been signed by independent publisher BenBella Books, is about “this larger issue of if you don’t fit into one box and if you don’t stay there your whole life, being identified from birth as who you are—what does that look like?”
Now, when I wrote about Dolezal earlier this week, I joked that I’d read the s—t out of any book on race that she happened to write. And while I will admit to possessing a curiosity about what the hell she’d say, her receiving a deal speaks to an issue many black people—particularly many black women—have been vexed about since the Dolezal story first circulated last year. By pretending to be a black woman, she took opportunities away from actual black women. And now this pretend black woman—who, again, is not a black woman—will receive actual money to write a book about, presumably, her experience as a pretend black woman. While many other much, much, much more qualified black women—black women who are actually black women—either go without that type of opportunity or have to put in an exponentially greater amount of work to receive it.
How many much, much, much more qualified black women, you ask? Well, if I just named the black female writers I personally know or have one degree of separation from, I could easily name 105. One hundred and five much, much, much more qualified black women whose words on race and being a black woman I’d be much more interested in reading than Dolezal’s.
(Some of these women may already have book deals and/or books, but that doesn’t matter. All that does matter is that they’ve put in the work of being an actual black woman.)
Aliya S. King. Clarece Polke. Danielle Belton. Demetria Lucas-D’Oyley. Maya Francis. Natalie Degraffinried. Shanae Brown. Samantha Irby. Shamira Ibrahim. Tonja Stidhum. Sarah Huny Young. Luvvie Ajayi. Jamilah Lemieux. Brittney Cooper. Akiba Soloman. Dara Mathis. Rahiel Tesfamariam. Kirsten West Savali. Asha Bandele. Tameka Cage Conley. Aisha Harris. Kara Brown. Clover Hope. Rebecca Carroll. Hillary Crosley Coker. Joy KMT. Penny Wrenn. Shenequa Golding. Angela Nissel. Jenée Desmond-Harris. Danielle Moodie-Mills. Melanie Martin. Kim Foster. Demetria Irwin. Kimberly Ellis. Deborah Todd. Tory Parrish. Issa Rae. Ashley Johnson. Zerlina Maxwell. Veronica Marché Jamison. Sakena Washington. Helena Andrews-Dyer. Bassey Ikpi. Josie Pickens. Arienne Thompson Plourde. Lyneka Little. Deesha Philyaw. Britni Danielle. Brandelyn Anderson. Terryn Hall. Brooke Obie. Lola Adesioye. Audra Melix. Kellee Terrell. Morgan DeBaun. Gina Cherelus. Patrice Desirae Alaquiva. Yesha Callahan. Kaneisha Grayson. Mary Pryor. Patrice Grell Yursik. Njaimeh Njie. Zaynab Aden. Robyn Lewis. Akoto Ofori-Atta. Hannah Giorgis. Marguerite Matthews. Maya Rhodan. Tanya Haynes. Rebecca Nuttall. Patrice Peck. Liz Burr. Eve Ewing. Nakia D. Hansen. Tracy Clayton. Charreah K. Jackson. Roxane Gay. Feminista Jones. Sai Grundy. Errin Whack. Soraya McDonald. Kelley Carter. dream hampton. Yona Harvey. Latoya Peterson. Lilly Workneh. Bené Viera. Melissa Harris-Perry. Lyne Pitts. Donna Byrd. Genetta Adams. Nikole Hannah-Jones. Yaba Blay. Meredith Clark. Kierna Mayo. Jamie Broadnax. Jam Donaldson. Christina Greer. Akirah Robinson. Genese Cage. Tressie McMillan Cottom. Janelle Harris. Trudy Hamilton. Stacia L. Brown.
I know there are dozens more who could be on this list. If you know any who could—or if you happen to be one of them—let me know in the comments.
Damon Young is the editor-in-chief of VerySmartBrothas.com. He is also a contributing editor at Ebony.com. He lives in Pittsburgh and he really likes pancakes. You can reach him at email@example.com.