Featured, Race & Politics

101 Actual Black Women More Deserving Of Book Deals Than Rachel Dolezal

Yesterday, various news outlets confirmed what post-racial turducken Rachel Dolezal alluded to in her recent interview on the Today show. She did indeed receive a deal to pen a book about race.

From The Guardian

Rachel Dolezal, the civil-rights activist who was accused of misrepresenting herself as black last year, has been signed to write a book about race.

Dolezal told NBC talkshow Today on Tuesday that the book, which Entertainment Weekly reported had been signed by independent publisher BenBella Books, is about “this larger issue of if you don’t fit into one box and if you don’t stay there your whole life, being identified from birth as who you are – what does that look like?

Now, when I wrote about Dolezal earlier this week, I joked I’d read the shit out of any book on race she happened to write. And while I will admit to possessing a curiosity about what the hell she’d say, her receiving a deal speaks to an issue many Black people — particularly many Black women — have been vexed about since the Dolezal story first circulated last year. By pretending to be a Black woman, she took opportunities away from actual Black women. And now this pretend Black woman — who, again, is not a Black woman — will receive actual money to write a book about, presumably, her experience as a pretend Black woman. While many other much, much, much more qualified Black women — Black women who are actually Black women — either go without that type of opportunity or have to put in an exponentially greater amount of work to receive it.

How many much, much, much more qualified Black women, you ask? Well, if I just named the Black female writers I personally know or have one degree of separation from, I can easily name 101. 101 much, much, much more qualified Black women whose words on race and being a Black woman I’d be much more interested in reading than Dolezal’s.

(Some of these women may already have book deals and/or books, but that doesn’t matter. All that does matter is that they’ve put in the work of being an actual Black woman.)

Aliya S. King. Clarece Polke. Danielle Belton. Demetria Lucas-D’Oyley. Maya Francis. Natalie Degraffinried. Shanae Brown. Samantha Irby. Shamira Ibrahim. Tonja Stidhum. Sarah Huny Young. Luvvie Ajayi. Jamilah Lemieux. Brittney Cooper. Akiba Solomon. Dara Mathis. Rahiel Tesfamariam. Kirsten West Savali. Asha Bandele. Tameka Cage Conley. Aisha Harris. Kara Brown. Clover Hope. Rebecca Carroll. Hillary Crosley Coker. Joy KMT. Penny Wrenn. Shenequa Golding. Angela Nissel. Jenée Desmond-Harris. Danielle Moodie-Mills. Melanie Martin. Kim Foster. Demetria Irwin. Kimberly Ellis. Deborah Todd. Tory Parrish. Issa Rae. Ashley Johnson. Zerlina Maxwell. Veronica Marché Jamison. Sakena Washington. Helena Andrews-Dyer. Bassey Ikpi. Josie Pickens. Arienne Thompson Plourde. Lyneka Little. Deesha Philyaw. Britni Danielle. Brandelyn Anderson. Terryn Hall. Brooke Obie. Lola Adesioye. Audra Melix. Kellee Terrell. Morgan DeBaun. Gina Cherelus. Patrice Desirae Alaquiva. Yesha Callahan. Kaneisha Grayson. Mary Pryor. Patrice Grell Yursik. Njaimeh Njie. Zaynab Aden. Robyn Lewis. Akoto Ofori-Atta. Hannah Giorgis. Marguerite Matthews. Maya Rhodan. Tanya Haynes. Rebecca Nuttall. Patrice Peck. Liz Burr. Eve Ewing. Nakia D. Hansen. Tracy Clayton. Charreah K. Jackson. Roxane Gay. Feminista Jones. Sai Grundy. Errin Whack. Soraya McDonald. Kelley Carter. dream hampton. Yona Harvey. Latoya Peterson. Lilly Workneh. Bene Viera. Melissa Harris-Perry. Lyne Pitts. Donna Byrd. Genetta Adams. Nikole Hannah-Jones. Yaba Blay. Meredith Clark. Kierna Mayo. Jamie Broadnax. Jam Donaldson. Christina Greer. Akirah Robinson. Genese Cage. Tressie McMillan Cottom. Janelle Harris. Trudy. Stacia L. Brown.

I know there’s dozens more who could be on this list. If you know any who could — or if you happen to be one of them — let me know in the comments.

Damon Young

Damon Young is the editor-in-chief of VSB. He is also a columnist for GQ.com and EBONY Magazine. And a founding editor for 1839. And he's working on a book of essays to be published by Ecco (HarperCollins). Damon is busy. He lives in Pittsburgh, and he really likes pancakes. Reach him at damon@verysmartbrothas.com. Or don't. Whatever.

  • ChokeOnThisTea

    102) me

    • Baemie St. Patrick

      beat me to it

      • ChokeOnThisTea

        103) Baemie St. Patrick

      • Ha ha

  • Vanity in Peril

    If Luvvie’ s book doesn’t hit NY Bestseller and this hot garbage does…?!?!?#

  • ChokeOnThisTea

    “Now, when I wrote about Dolezal earlier this week, I joked I’d read the sh it out of any book on race she happened to write. And while I will admit to possessing a curiosity about what the he ll she’d say, her receiving a deal speaks to an issue many Black people — particularly many Black women — have been vexed about since the Dolezal story first circulated last year. By pretending to be a Black woman, she took opportunities away from actual Black women. And now this pretend Black woman — who, again, is not a Black woman — will receive actual money to write a book about, presumably, her experience as a pretend Black woman. While many other much, much, much more qualified Black women — Black women who are actually Black women — either go without that type of opportunity or have to put in an exponentially greater amount of work to receive it.”

    This part is so good it bears repeating!

  • TJ

    I thought this was going to be a comedy listicle of some sorts like: 86) The church lady who never wears the same hat twice. Lol. I’m acting up today!

    This lady still brings my blood to a boil. Idk why. Let’s hope the book doesn’t sell.

    • Mzansi Maasai

      Definitely was expecting that sort of article too!

      • Amber

        Lol me too.

    • Haaaas

    • This was just his way to say Fuck Agatha…..cruelly.

  • Norma Jarrett

    Why I love VSB and agree with all of the above and yes, me too http://www.normajarrett.net

    • LadyIbaka

      I think I read Sweet Magnolia some years back!!

  • ChokeOnThisTea

    I just want to know why everyone else is considered a “better” candidate for representing black women than actual black women?—The black woman with “one drop” of “black blood.” The black woman who was really born a black man. The black woman who was really born a white girl. Sh it’s gotta stop.

    • miss t-lee

      “I just want to know why everyone else is considered a “better” candidate for representing black women than actual black women”

      Girl…

    • Tambra

      Why are you still here? I thought you were on a week’s leave.

      • miss t-lee

        We knew it wouldn’t stick.

        • Tambra

          Lol. But I guess a sister can dream.

      • ChokeOnThisTea

        I KNOOOWWW! Good looking out, Tambra.
        I’mma leave though. After two more comments. =) Rachel Dolezal is just a trigger for me. Lol

        • Tambra

          Sure, until a new post drops tomorrow then you are back. You will be missed if you actually go on hiatus.

          • ChokeOnThisTea

            Thanks. But a VSS really has to get some uninterrupted work done.

            • Tambra

              That I can relate to. I log on when I need a break and distraction.

        • See you tomorrow

          • ChokeOnThisTea

            Get back, Satan

        • Mochasister

          Don’t feel badly. I’m addicted to VSB too. I keep saying that I’m going to put them down but it’s hard. Lol, I learn new words for white folk, keep up on current news from a Black person’s perspective, laugh my head off…

    • dmcmillian72

      Yes… And this goes to @disqus_YeG1FUyAV7:disqus’s article yesterday about who should write about Black women’s experiences. People actually arguing why it’s okay that you don’t have to be that…a Black woman…to write about it… *LE PHUQING SIGH*

      • ChokeOnThisTea

        EXACTLY!!!!! It’s sickening.

  • miss t-lee

    I’m pretty sure I could have someone write my life story since book deals are being handed out to just anybody.

    • What’s the title?

      • miss t-lee

        Sweet Tea and Throat Punches: A Memoir

        • *nods

        • RewindingtonMaximus

          S.H.A.D.E can be the title of the next one.

          • miss t-lee

            I’ll take this into consideration for the sequel.

            • RewindingtonMaximus

              *nods*

            • Get a room, you two

        • brothaskeeper

          A page turner!

          • miss t-lee

            Indeed.

          • miss t-lee

            Yes lawd.

        • Tambra

          The men are out for you girl. I guess you have to give them good the next time they engage you.

          • miss t-lee

            Sh*t talking is contagious.

        • Tonja (aka Cheeks)

          Can I pre-order this???

          • miss t-lee

            LMAO.

        • Lea Thrace

          Where can I buy?!

          • miss t-lee

            hahahah. Y’all got me thinking I could really write this.

            • Lea Thrace

              I dont know why you couldnt. You got stories for days. Make it happen lady!

              • miss t-lee

                Hmmmmm.
                Thank you for your vote of confidence. :)

                • fxd8424

                  I’d buy it.

                  • miss t-lee

                    Awww. Thank you. :)

        • This makes me thing of my favorite rap line of the moment “Uppercut a thot like Ryu” which is wrong but I laugh everytime.

          • miss t-lee

            Is that Beat King?
            …and yes I laugh everytime.

            • Yes.

              • miss t-lee

                He’s a certified fool.
                His new album is just as wild.

                • Was he around before Young Dolph?

                  • miss t-lee

                    I’m not sure. He’s been out since 06 or so, mostly underground and club circuit here. He signed a major deal last year.

  • Give the following women a book AND movie deal please: Jacinta Howard, Christina C. Jones, Love Belvin, Faith Simone, Piper Huguley, Danielle Allen, Synithia Williams, Nia Forrester, S.K Hardy and Iris Bolling

  • poewit

    Add: L’Oréal Snell to the list please, Damon.

    Thanks.

  • Alexis Okeowo (who actually has a book dropping next year)
    Warsan Shire
    Wagatwe Wanjuki
    Ameena Mathews

    • I stumbled onto Warsan Shire’s Work. I’m not into poetry like that, but I like her.

More Like This