megwrites: Reading girl by Renoir.  (Default)
[personal profile] megwrites
This powerful, powerful post in response to Charles Tan's essay by Ephemere entitled No Country For Strangers is something I think everyone, and I mean everyone, who is a writer, a reader, a fan, or just a human being should be reading and re-reading. Bookmark this and return to it frequently.

And I quote:

So (and I address this now to the theoretical audience of those on the other, privileged end of the inequality) if you, as a white person, are afraid of writing about us: then be afraid. Carry in your heart the fear of doing further injustice to a people into whose blood oppression has become so incorporated that our institutions and our media echo with the dual strains of self-loathing and adulation for those who are not us. Live with the anxiety of questioning your assumptions about a people that is not more American than America, not a race composed only of tourist guides and call-center agents and overseas foreign workers and shoe-crazy society matrons and celebrity politicians, not your "little brown brothers and sisters"; whose richness and diversity and pursuit of individual identity all too often escape the surface view to which most observers are confined. Confront your blind spots and your privilege in having the luxury of overlooking this inequality because you aren't disenfranchised by it.

I cannot begin to express how righteously right that essay is, how it is a deeply spoken truth. It is something that we privileged writers (including and especially me) need to listen very, very carefully to. Because that listening thing? This is the time to sit down and do it.
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