Brown White Black
Intimate and honest essays on motherhood, marriage, love, and acceptanceBrown, White, Black is a portrait of Nishta J. Mehra's family: her wife, who is white; her adopted son, who is black; and their experiences dealing with America's rigid ideas of race, gender, and sexuality. Her clear-eyed and incisive writing on her family's daily struggle to make space for themselves amid racial intolerance and stereotypes personalizes some of America's most fraught issues. Mehra writes candidly about her efforts to protect and shelter her young son from racial slurs on the playground and from intrusive questions by strangers while educating him on the realities and dangers of being a black male in America. In other essays, she discusses her childhood living in the racially polarized city of Memphis; coming out as queer; being an adoptive mother who is brown; and what it's like to be constantly confronted by people's confusion, concern, and expectations about her child and her family. Above all, Mehra argues passionately for a more nuanced and compassionate understanding of identity and family.Both poignant and challenging, Brown, White, Black is a remarkable portrait of a loving family on the front lines of some of the most highly charged conversations in our culture.

Brown White Black Details

TitleBrown White Black
Author
ReleaseFeb 5th, 2019
PublisherPicador
ISBN-139781250133564
Rating
GenreWriting, Essays, Nonfiction, Autobiography, Memoir, Race, Lgbt

Brown White Black Review

  • Valerie
    January 1, 1970
    This is a beautifully written but also highly accessible glimpse into the life of a modern American family that doesn't quite fit the definition of what many think an "American family" should look like and act like. It is important reading for anyone who wants an understanding of the daily questions, topics, and issues that family's like Mehra's must address as they navigate life, friendships, and parenting.
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  • Tim Mazurek
    January 1, 1970
    It’s so beautifully written. Clear and direct and manages to talk about big important things through the lens of one family. A thoroughly engaging read.
  • Kristine
    January 1, 1970
    A beautiful, thoughtful essay collection that will probe you to consider your own identity, whatever that may be, and its impact on how you move through the world. Mehra's family may "check all the boxes," but their experiences are surprisingly universal. With each essay I messaged another friend and said, "You really have to read this book!" knowing they would find some touchstone of common experience. From navigating the highs and lows of parenting a toddler, to experiencing grief after the lo A beautiful, thoughtful essay collection that will probe you to consider your own identity, whatever that may be, and its impact on how you move through the world. Mehra's family may "check all the boxes," but their experiences are surprisingly universal. With each essay I messaged another friend and said, "You really have to read this book!" knowing they would find some touchstone of common experience. From navigating the highs and lows of parenting a toddler, to experiencing grief after the loss of a loved one, to confronting one's own deeply flawed notions of race, to bucking against mom and dad's stifling expectations as a teen, to growing up the child of immigrants--there's something here for everyone! Mehra's honesty is refreshing--she is not perfect, nor has she navigated every challenge perfectly, yet she brings deep insight in reflecting on these experiences now. Funny, sweet, poignant, and thought-provoking, this is a worthwhile read no matter what boxes you check.
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  • Mei
    January 1, 1970
    A collection of essays by Nishta Mehra, an Indian American queer whose wife is white. Together, they adopted a black son who is currently exploring her gender identity. I really enjoyed this - I related to a lot of her first generation immigrant upbringing in a mostly white area and to her views on parenthood. She writes clearly about her family's struggles to make a space for themselves in a world that doesn't tolerate who they are as a family unit. The essays aren't chronological but they flow A collection of essays by Nishta Mehra, an Indian American queer whose wife is white. Together, they adopted a black son who is currently exploring her gender identity. I really enjoyed this - I related to a lot of her first generation immigrant upbringing in a mostly white area and to her views on parenthood. She writes clearly about her family's struggles to make a space for themselves in a world that doesn't tolerate who they are as a family unit. The essays aren't chronological but they flowed seamlessly between her upbringing in a racially divided Memphis, coming out as queer, adopting a black child, etc. It's clear she has thought about identity a lot and this would be a recommended read for anyone trying to understand race and identity in America.
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  • Jeimy
    January 1, 1970
    I read this one in one day because it was brief, not because I was riveted. While the author’s family is not what most picture when they think of a family, her contributions to the discussion about identity politics is nothing we haven’t heard before.
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  • Senshin
    January 1, 1970
    Would have loved for it to be much longer! Will read again.
  • A. D. Paventi
    January 1, 1970
    Brown, White, Black was a very interesting read for me. I am Caucasian, straight, with biological children. I have never suffered racial discrimination or sexual discrimination, so it was tought to emphasize with Nishta; however, I could sympathize with her as a woman and mother trying to do the best she can for her son. The writing is excellent, the storyline e poignant and engaging, and the character's were beautifully developed. Thank you to Netgalley and the author for allowing to read the a Brown, White, Black was a very interesting read for me. I am Caucasian, straight, with biological children. I have never suffered racial discrimination or sexual discrimination, so it was tought to emphasize with Nishta; however, I could sympathize with her as a woman and mother trying to do the best she can for her son. The writing is excellent, the storyline e poignant and engaging, and the character's were beautifully developed. Thank you to Netgalley and the author for allowing to read the advanced copy.
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