Today's Recommended Reading

Here is a very interesting post over at Racialicious by the very brilliant Thea Lim, on how to read and respond to literature of color. She concludes with this (YES EXACTLY THANK YOU, says the Rejectionist, who is getting a little tired of (white) industry professionals exhorting would-be writers to refrain from having opinions that are 'political'):

The bottom line for me, is to just be conscious of the fact that you’re white. And that white writers are white. And that all writers that write about humans are writing ethnic concerns. And I think it’s very important for writers and teachers of writing to be able to fess up to that: all writing is racial, all writing is political. All choices on a reading list are political.

Also reproduced therein is this quote from Junot Díaz OMG CAN WE HAVE A DAY WHERE WE ALL JUST TALK ABOUT HOW AMAZING JUNOT DIAZ IS:

We’re in a country where white is considered normative; it’s a country where white writers are simply writers, and writers of Latino descent are Latino writers. This is an issue whose roots are deeper than just the publishing community or how an artist wants to self-designate. It’s about the way the U.S. wants to view itself and how it engineers otherness in people of color and, by doing so, props up white privilege. I try to battle the forces that seek to “other” people of color and promote white supremacy. But I also have no interest in being a “writer,” either, shorn from all my connections and communities. I’m a Dominican writer, a writer of African descent, and whether or not anyone else wants to admit it, I know also that Stephen King and Jonathan Franzen are white writers. The problem isn’t in labeling writers by their color or their ethnic group; the problem is that one group organizes things so that everyone else gets these labels but not it. No, not it. -- Interview with Slate, 2008