An unflinching look at the challenges and misunderstandings mixed-race people face in family spaces and intimate relationships across their varying cultural backgrounds

Product Code: 9318
ISBN: 9780807013366
Format: Paperback / softback
Publisher: Beacon Press
Pages: 200
Published Date: 01/09/2024
Availability:In stock
Price: $18.95

In this emotionally powerful and intellectually provocative blend of memoir, cultural criticism, and theory, scholar and essayist Samira Mehta reflects on many facets of being multiracial.

Born to a white American and a South Asian immigrant, Mehta grew up feeling more comfortable with her mother’s family than her father’s—they never carried on conversations in languages she couldn’t understand or blamed her for finding the food was too spicy. In adulthood, she realized that some of her Indian family’s assumptions about the world had become an indelible part of her—and that her well-intentioned parents had not known how to prepare her for a world that would see her as a person of color.

Popular belief assumes that mixedness gives you the ability to feel at home in more than one culture, but the flipside shows you can feel just as alienated in those spaces. In 7 essays that dissect her own experiences with a frankness tempered by generosity, Mehta confronts questions about:

  • authenticity and belonging;
  • conscious and unconscious cultural inheritance;
  • appropriate mentorship;
  • the racism of people who love you.
    • The Racism of People Who Love You invites people of mixed race into the conversation on race in America and the melding of found and inherited cultures of hybrid identity.

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Author’s Note

Where Are You Really From? A Triptych
Meat Is Murder
Failing the Authenticity Test
American Racism
The Racism of People Who Love You


“Thoughtful meditations on identity.” —Kirkus Reviews

“Samira Mehta interweaves laugh-out-loud personal vignettes with piercing reflections on life as a biracial person. Drawing also on her multireligious upbringing, she conveys moments of joy and pain in ways that let us all in on the experience. The Racism Of People Who Love You is relatable for all kinds of readers, with especially important insights for all of us who have people of mixed racial and religious backgrounds in our families and social circles.” —Khyati Y. Joshi, author of White Christian Privilege

The Racism of People Who Love You is by turns gripping, challenging, funny, and compassionate, effortlessly entwining personal experience with global, religious, and literary histories. Samira Mehta is an important new voice grappling with the complexity of American identities.” —Peter Manseau, author of One Nation Under Gods: A New American History

“Samira Mehta’s The Racism of People Who Love You has the qualities of my favorite writing: insightful, provocative, and revealing. Her unique story provides a window into the common yet underrepresented experience of mixed belonging, and she displays the unique ability to share these stories in ways that welcome the reader to see the world afresh.” —Simran Jeet Singh, author of The Light We Give

“We are finally, thankfully, seeing more books that delve into the personal experience of race. Now, with The Racism of People Who Love You, Mehta offers us her perspective on the complexities of experiencing race as a person of mixed race—part white, part South Asian. This work is an important addition to our on-going discussions about race in America.” —Kavita Das, author of Craft and Conscience: How to Write About Social Issues

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