Oh dear. I read a decent amount this month but only managed to write one review. And with all those bank holidays too! I really do want to write more about all of this month’s books, but I am in danger of forgetting any interesting critical thoughts I had about them. Ah well. There have been things on my mind.
Speaking of things on my mind, racism is – rightly – a major point of discussion right now. As a white woman, I need to educate myself as well as call it out when I see it. My school education was sorely lacking in this department. In history (which I studied up to A-level) the coverage of slavery was limited to the trade triangle and maybe one or two accounts of slave ships. Colonialism was an even briefer footnote, limited to a few maps of the world showing the extent of different empires, but no examination of how they came to be, how they operated, the long-lasting effect they had on all countries involved. Even when studying Othello at university, we didn’t really look at historical race issues, which I now see as a shocking omission.
So I have switched up my June reading plans from finishing my EU list to some titles that address race and racism head-on. I’m starting with Reni Eddo-Lodge’s Why I’m No Longer Talking to White People About Race, and I plan to follow it up with Superior: the Return of Race Science by Angela Saini. After that, I’m thinking maybe The Underground Railroad by Colson Whitehead, perhaps Toni Morrison’s Playing in the Dark: Whiteness and the Literary Imagination.