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Motherhood So White : A Memoir of Race, Gender, and Parenting in America
by Nefertiti Austin




Overview -

The story every mother in America needs to read. As featured on NPR and the TODAY Show. All moms have to deal with choosing baby names, potty training, finding your village, and answering your kid's tough questions, but if you are raising a Black child, you have to deal with a lot more than that. Especially if you're a single Black mom... and adopting.

Nefertiti Austin shares her story of starting a family through adoption as a single Black woman. In this unflinching account of her parenting journey, Nefertiti examines the history of adoption in the African American community, faces off against stereotypes of single Black moms, and confronts the reality of what it looks like to raise children of color and answer their questions about racism in modern-day America.

Honest, vulnerable, and uplifting, Motherhood So White is a fantastic book for mothers who have read White Fragility by Robin DiAngelo, Stamped from the Beginning by Ibram X. Kendi, Why Are All The Black Kids Sitting Together in the Cafeteria? by Beverly Daniel Tatum, or other books about racism and want to see how these social issues play out in a very personal way for a single mom and her Black son.

This great book club read explores social and cultural bias, gives a new perspective on a familiar experience, and sparks meaningful conversations about what it looks like for Black families in white America today.

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More About Motherhood So White by Nefertiti Austin

 
 
 

Overview

The story every mother in America needs to read. As featured on NPR and the TODAY Show. All moms have to deal with choosing baby names, potty training, finding your village, and answering your kid's tough questions, but if you are raising a Black child, you have to deal with a lot more than that. Especially if you're a single Black mom... and adopting.

Nefertiti Austin shares her story of starting a family through adoption as a single Black woman. In this unflinching account of her parenting journey, Nefertiti examines the history of adoption in the African American community, faces off against stereotypes of single Black moms, and confronts the reality of what it looks like to raise children of color and answer their questions about racism in modern-day America.

Honest, vulnerable, and uplifting, Motherhood So White is a fantastic book for mothers who have read White Fragility by Robin DiAngelo, Stamped from the Beginning by Ibram X. Kendi, Why Are All The Black Kids Sitting Together in the Cafeteria? by Beverly Daniel Tatum, or other books about racism and want to see how these social issues play out in a very personal way for a single mom and her Black son.

This great book club read explores social and cultural bias, gives a new perspective on a familiar experience, and sparks meaningful conversations about what it looks like for Black families in white America today.


 

Details

  • ISBN-13: 9781492679011
  • ISBN-10: 1492679011
  • Publisher: Sourcebooks
  • Publish Date: September 2019
  • Page Count: 304
  • Dimensions: 9.1 x 6.2 x 1.2 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 1.01 pounds


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BookPage Reviews

Motherhood So White

In her memoir, Motherhood So White, Nefertiti Austin provides valuable firsthand insight into what it means to be a black single mother and to reject the constraints of societal expectations.

When Austin decided to adopt her son, August, a black boy placed in the California foster care system, she was met with criticism and disbelief, especially from her own family. They couldn’t understand why she wanted to legally adopt a stranger, an outsider. For many black people, adoption is a cultural custom reserved for white people, unless you had “a connection with that child, even a tenuous one.”

As a child, Austin’s grandparents provided stability and guidance while her parents drifted in and out of her life. Her own adoptive experience had shown her that families, especially black families, didn’t need to be limited to the traditional expectations of one mother and one father, or to the demands of the white gaze.

When she decided to become a mother at 36, Austin had to first become a foster parent, as decreed by California state law. This journey, which eventually resulted in adoption, was not without trials and tribulations. Not only did she face the daily challenges of newfound motherhood, she also had to contend with America’s legacy of systemic racism and discrimination, which renders black mothers either as invisible or as tropes in a dehumanizing narrative.

Austin’s memoir is a natural response to both the erasure of black mothers and the dismissive and demeaning misrepresentation of black motherhood. She relays her experiences with equal parts candor and consideration, careful not to paint communities or motherhood with broad brushstrokes as she dismantles the notion that all “real” families must look and act alike. Motherhood So White is a testament to the power of love as a radical act and an urgent call to reclaim motherhood from institutionalized whiteness.

 

ALSO IN BOOKPAGE: Read our interview with Nefertiti Austin, author of Motherhood So White.

 

BAM Customer Reviews