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Speaking Treason Fluently: Anti-Racist Reflections From an Angry White Male
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Speaking Treason Fluently: Anti-Racist Reflections From an Angry White Male

4.1 of 5 stars 4.10  ·  rating details  ·  183 ratings  ·  25 reviews
In this highly anticipated follow-up to White Like Me: Reflections on Race from a Privileged Son, activist Tim Wise examines the way in which institutional racism continues to shape the contours of daily life in the United States, and the ways in which white Americans reap enormous privileges from it. The essays included in this collection span the last ten years of Wise’s...more
Paperback, 352 pages
Published September 1st 2008 by Soft Skull Press
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Lauren
So it took me a few weeks to get through Tim Wise's latest book. While I generally hang on every word he types, I found that 359 pages of anti-racist essays can become heavy on one's heart. He maintain a tone of righteous indignation for all 359 pages, which is both a credit to his passion for the subject and a little grating on the nerves. I closed the book very glad that I had read it, however - he writes on topics as diverse as the presidential race, steroid use in baseball and the unwise ado...more
Faith
This is a collection of Wise's speeches/essays from 2000 to May 2008. I was able to read only a few in the 14 days the library allowed me, but I've read enough to know I'm going to buy the book and read more. And keep it on the shelf as a reference. It helped me articulate what bothers me about the surge of support of the youngish senator from Illinois: "Obama's rise has owed almost everything to his ability ...... to 'transcend' race, which is really a way of saying his ability to carve out an...more
Ben
I thought this book was amazing, which both thrills and troubles me.

My initial AND ultimate reactions to Wise's passionate assessments of racism in American culture is ultimately pride and inspiration. As a man married to a black woman with two mixed children, I find a comfort knowing that these sentiments are being viciously and vigorously sounded.

What most impressed me was Wise's ability to use statistical analysis of sociological surveys and polls to lay the indestructible foundation of his...more
Sarah
while reading:

i'm not super into the way that he ridicules people who hold (admittedly) ignorant points of view. it's not constructive. there's no call to be rude. i mean, of course, rudeness is totally provoked, but it's not ultimately constructive. what would be more constructive would be some discussion of anti-racist education so that such ignorance cannot continue.

later:

oh my god i get it already. racism is a problem. i get it. it's illogical. true words. but you're not going to convince an...more
Beth
More great stuff from Wise. Essays written from 2000 to 2008, all relevant right now and into the future. His humor makes the hard, bitter facts easier to face up to somehow. He wants white people to face racism and then do something about it, and he won't take any excuses. He lives his values, so it's hard to dismiss anything he says (not that I would want to) as hyperbole or idealistic or too demanding. Lots of food for thought here, as well as motivation for action.
Tim
I will keep my first review below for posterity, but I feel compelled to re-write my review in the light of recent circumstances.

Sometimes you never know how much a book wil impact you upon first reading. Sometimes you don't even know how much it has changed you until you've given it's message time to worm its way into your heart and mind. Sometimes even then you don't know it's impact until you find yourself defending the book's prinicples, using the book's arguments and earnestly beleiving th...more
Chris
great book of essays on racism. style was debunking common white arguments against racism - thnks like "why dont we have a national association for advancement of white people?" Answer: we do- it is called ocngress- then he backs up the response- as a white man who has benefited from white privilege it was nice to have a primer where I could find out what that really means. he did have one or two knee jerk pieces that were unsupported and or not well thought out- his brief diatribe against chris...more
Robin Diangelo
Well, by now anyone reading these will have figured out I read books on racism. Not just becuase this is my area of study, but also becuase they keep me on my toes and help challenge my white complacency that I "already know" what I need to know. They also reinforce me and help "prop me up" against the daily resistance I get from other whites. These books are a kind of "I am not crazy" remedy. Plus, they make me smarter and then I am more effective.

So, Tim Wise. I love his anger. And he has an...more
rachel  misfiticus
I would like to preface this by saying: I like Time Wise, but one should space it out a bit with these essays. Also this deserves a half star.

I would also like to say that I have no idea how to articulate how I felt about this book! Basically, Wise's book is a collection of essays and blogs from the past 10 years or so. As a result, the book can get a bit redundant in terms of statistics etc.. It seems as though every two pages Wise is telling me "Racism exists!" And I am thinking "No shit!" Am...more
Jennifer
Only just beginning this powerful look at a book that covers both white denial and complacency.

Particulary relevant at this time in our country's history when so many view the election of a black/bi-racial man as "transcending race" by which we really mean transcending his blackness, as if blackness is something negative, something from which one ought to seek escape, and quickly.
Pam
Feb 10, 2009 Pam rated it 4 of 5 stars
Recommends it for: everyone
I really like his writing style and ideas.

This book can be a little repetative, since it's from essays written over a period of time, and certain themes reemerge frequentlly. He might have written them five years apart, but they're only 5 pages apart in the book, but other than that, it's a great book, lots to think about.
Elyssa
This book of essays about racism and the role of white privilege in perpetuating unjust political and power structures is potent. My only criticism is that the essasy become repetitive after awhile. This book might have worked better if the editing was stronger or if Wise opted to blend the essays into one narrative.
kristyn
I didn't finish every single essay, though I wanted to, b/c I think I had checked this out double time already, and still hadn't gotten there. I really appreciate Tim's incisiveness, though, and I felt this was more argument and less anger (in a helpful way) then some of his other ones.
ms byrd
tim wise has some sharp anti-racist-inspired critiques, which i appreciated. however, the way he reports delivering them to others--with condescension and without compassion--smacks of the kind of privilege and disdain he purports to want to unearth and eradicate.
Marta
Because this is a collection of (mostly) previously published essays, it gets a little repetitive at times - he's citing some of the same statistics over and over again and I think there's even a repeat story or two.
Courtney Ali
A very weak three stars. I loved his memoir but this book lacked. I understand that it is compiled essays but it was A LOT of repetitive info over and over again. I was really disappointed.
Erin
Dec 12, 2008 Erin rated it 2 of 5 stars
Recommends it for: the patient activist willing to read between the insults
I will finish this because it is my reading group's pick this month. Otherwise, Mr. Wise would have left my house a while ago. Disappointing, as I expected a bit better of him.
Liz S
highly important, powerful prose....but it's a collection of previously written essays, so it gets really repetitive towards the end.
Katrinka
Accessible, logical (if such a dry term can be used), and compassionate. Should be required reading, in schools and beyond.
TC Jones
Stunning collection of essays. Why this isn't required reading in every high school is beyond me.
Kevin
Great book! Summarizes wonderfully the state of race and systemic racism in the US.
Ally Pye
I got this book from the anti-racism summit last week! Awesome speaker!
Weavre
Sep 30, 2008 Weavre marked it as to-read
ILL only; as of Sept. 30, neither Luzerne nor Lackawanna systems have this yet.
Nfrma'at
Sep 08, 2012 Nfrma'at is currently reading it
Very insightful and truthful...A must read...
Mireille Hernandez
Love how he tells it like it is.
Susan
Susan marked it as to-read
Oct 16, 2014
Sila Sayan
Sila Sayan marked it as to-read
Sep 30, 2014
qtasha
qtasha marked it as to-read
Sep 27, 2014
Erin
Erin marked it as to-read
Sep 27, 2014
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Tim Wise is among the most prominent anti-racist writers and activists in the U.S., and has been called the foremost white anti-racist intellectual in the nation, having spoken in 46 states, and on over 300 college campuses, including Harvard, Stanford, Cal Tech and the Law Schools at Yale, Columbia, Michigan, and Vanderbilt.

From 1999 to 2003, Wise served as an advisor to the Fisk University Race...more
More about Tim Wise...
White Like Me: Reflections on Race from a Privileged Son Between Barack and a Hard Place: Racism and White Denial in the Age of Obama Colorblind: The Rise of Post-Racial Politics and the Retreat from Racial Equity Dear White America: Letter to a New Minority Affirmative Action: Racial Preference in Black and White

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