"There is No Secret to Writing About People Who Do Not Look Like You" (Brandon Taylor)

Courtesy of #LitHub

Just read this incredible article over at lithub.com. Published on August 25th, it's titled, "There is No Secret to Writing About People Who Do Not Look Like You ." In it, writer Brandon Taylor criticizes the trend of having "Writing the Other" type lit classes and workshops. He insists that it is inherently problematic to "other" folks based on race and offer narrow representations of them in literature. I love his final argument: the key to writing about folks outside of your racial group is simply empathy. This article is so important! In my writing, I always state if the character is white. I don't do it for any other race. It's my subtle, subversive "fuck you" to the trend of assuming whiteness in literature. Here's my favorite quote from the article: "I admit that I am perplexed by the absence of classes meant to instruct us in writing white middle-class ennui. No special roundtables to discuss how best to write about straight people or cis people or able-bodied people. There is no special secret to writing about people who do not look like you. There is no technique that you need that is different from writing about self. If you can write self, you can write other."💕

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