The Books that are Cluttering up My Desk
There are two books out this spring that deal with race and passing. I have been meaning to read them but this damn J&K+8 fiasco is just sucking up my time. Did he cheat on her? Did she cheat on him? And what about the chil-dren?! Please will someone think of the children?
The first book isn’t the usual passing story about a tragic mulatto trying to get into white society. Actually it’s the opposite; a white male who lives his personal life as a black man.
And it doesn’t help that the white man looked like this:
Clarence King was an American Geologist who was the first director of the United States Geological Survey. But in his personal life his African American wife knew him as James Todd a Pullman porter. It wasn’t until he was on his death bed that King revealed the true identity of his race to his wife.
Martha Sandweiss’ book, “Passing Strange: A Gilded Age Tale of Love and Deception Across the Colorline” recounts King’s life from the beginning and his double life. Unfortunately Ada’s life is not as documented.
The second book is about the history of whites passing as blacks in the U.S. Baz Dreisinger’s book “Near Black: White to Black Passing in American Culture” looks at the fragility of whiteness and racial appropriation.
But then I readily admit they are books I’ve been trying to read but haven’t had a chance to yet. They are definitely on my short list of books to read, right after the season premiere of J&K+8; I am so sure he’s going to get his gonads back this season.