The refreshing clarity of what Dabiri is asking of us is grounding, outlined immediately on the contents page. Her chapter titles are presented almost like a manifesto ... The Interrogate Whiteness chapter is a fascinating historical account, exposing the stark power structures in place to pacify exploited workers dating back to the Virginia tobacco plantations of the 1600s ... Although this undoubtedly will be an internationally acclaimed book, we should appreciate that this book is by an Irish writer and from an Irish perspective. There is much about how we as a society have failed to integrate different races and cultures and our guidance should not come from the US or the UK ... There is a lot to digest in this book and I would suggest you take your time with it or return to it regularly. I was buzzing after reading it in a similar way to hearing a fresh song ... should be in the back pocket of every political party member needing guidance with integration and community building. It is a useful guide to every old media organisation that has bumbled their way through apologies that have started with Father Ted levels of 'not racist' exclaims and every new media outlet who think their inclusivity policies immunise them from criticism ... Most importantly, this book is for everyone. We should also appreciate that we have an academic like Emma Dabiri writing as if James Connolly and Audre Lorde had a love child.
For such a heavy subject matter, Dabiri's book is surprisingly lightweight and nonthreatening — a testament to the author's expert grasp of how divided we have all become and the desperate need for gentle guidance toward a better understanding of each other. The future that Dabiri proposes in What White People Can Do Next moves beyond a stale, centuries-old shouting match between what 'white people' have done and what 'Black people' have endured and is able to target our true common enemy — ideas of 'whiteness' that are being used to deceive all of us. What White People Can Do Next is an enlightening and practical essay that offers a new way to talk about racial justice, a new narrative where everyone benefits, and one that offers the tools to 'build on the revolutionary ideas of the past, and forge new connections' ... gives us all the opportunity to abandon guilt in conversations of racial injustice by realizing that however you racially identify, and whichever culture and country you are from, 'capitalism, patriarchy and white supremacy have seduced and press-ganged people into servitude,' including white people ... reading What White People Can Do Next is an essential step toward an objectively healthier society.
There is a plethora of anti-racism texts to choose from at the moment – book deals aplenty followed the Black Lives Matter resurgence in the summer of 2020 – but few pack as big a punch as this ... Emma Dabiri cuts through the regurgitated discourse, providing practical advice and hopeful solutions for a world beyond the banality of the 'Is X racist?' media debates which seem to occur almost weekly ... a thoughtful, nuanced read that is deftly researched and studded with relevant reflections from Dabiri’s own life in Ireland, the UK and the US ... Her takedowns of online activism and allyship, as well as her insights into postcolonialism and collectivism, are suitable for readers of any background ... An academic and presenter, Dabiri is on top form when applying her razor-sharp analysis to the symbiotic relationship between capitalism and racism, and how it harms us all ... Throughout the book Dabiri alludes to the ways in which racism and neoliberalism is a distraction from protecting the Earth; I would have loved a little more on this ... Nevertheless, on finishing I was filled with optimism – not just for Dabiri’s future as a writer and intellectual, but for the ambitious new world order which she imagines for all of us.