Synopses & Reviews
Wise offers a highly personal examination of the ways in which racial privilege shapes the lives of most white Americans, overtly racist or not, to the detriment of people of color, themselves, and society. Using stories instead of stale statistics, Wise weaves a narrative that is at once readable yet scholarly, analytical, and accessible.
"Activist, lecturer and director of the new Association for White Anti-Racist Education (AWARE), Wise works from anecdote rather than academic argument to recount his path to greater cultural awareness in a colloquial, matter-of-fact quasi-memoir that urges white people to fight racism 'for our own sake.' Sparing neither family nor self, Wise recalls a racist rant his antiracist mother once delivered, racial epithets uttered by his Alzheimer's-afflicted grandmother and the 'conditioning' that leads him to wonder, for a split-second, if people of color are truly qualified for their jobs. He considers how the deck has always been stacked in his and other white people's favor: his grandmother's house, which served as collateral for a loan he needed for college, for instance, was in a neighborhood that had formerly barred blacks. Resistance to racism, Wise declares, requires support (it's better for a group to speak out against racial tracking than for one 'crazy radical' to do it), and that's presumably part of what this volume means to provide. And while Wise sometimes falls victim to sweeping judgments the act of debating racial profiling, he declares, is 'white-identified,' because only whites have the luxury to look at life or death issues as a battle of wits his candor is invigorating." Publishers Weekly (Copyright 2004 Reed Business Information, Inc.)
In White Like Me, Tim Wise offers a highly personal examination of the ways in which racial privilege shapes the lives of most white Americans, overtly racist or not, to the detriment of people of color, themselves, and society. The book shows the breadth and depth of the phenomenon within institutions such as education, employment, housing, criminal justice, and healthcare. By critically assessing the magnitude of racial privilege and its enormous costs, Wise provides a rich memoir that will inspire activists, educators, or anyone interested in understanding the way that race continues to shape the experiences of people in the U.S. Using stories instead of stale statistics, Wise weaves a narrative that is at once readable and scholarly, analytical and accessible.