Thursday, August 07, 2008

A List of Colorful Memoirs

So, I was googling Kinky Gazpacho the other day, which I admit to doing every now and again, when I came upon this fabulous list of memoirs compiled by Kate Ward for Entertainment The title of the article is "So You Want to Write a Memoir" and is a kind of tongue in cheek warning that since every conceivable life story has already been written about, you might want to reconsider putting pen to paper with yours.

To prove her point, Ward then lists over 100 memoirs, by category. I liked the "Racial Identity Category (where Kinky Gazpacho does appear) and thought I'd share it with you my Meltingpot Readers.

Racial identity
Life as a biracial child: The Color of Water, by James McBride (1996)
Racism abroad: Kinky Gazpacho, by Lori L. Tharps (2008)
Her rigid Chinese family values in suburban New York: Daughter of Heaven, by Leslie Li (2005)
Fighting for Latino civil rights: Memoir of a Visionary, by Antonia Pantoja (2002)
Overcoming racism as the daughter of a Panamanian mother: Mama's Girl, by Veronica Chambers (1996)
Life as a black man in a 99.9% white, racist town: Not a Genuine Black Man, by Brian Copeland (2006)
Racism directed toward her adoptive African-American brother in rural Indiana:Jesus Land, by Julia Scheeres (2005)
Being an African-American who passed as a white woman: The Black Notebooks, by Toi Derricotte (1997)
Being a white man who worked for African-American journalism outlets: Nitty Gritty, by Ben Burns (1996)
Racism in a German orphanage: Invisible Woman, by Ika Hügel-Marshall (2001)
Being biracial in WWII-era China: Things That Must Not Be Forgotten, by Michael David Kwan (2001)
Being gay in Mexican culture: Butterfly Boy, by Rigoberto González (2006)
Rejecting his peers' prejudices as a child to play jazz with veteran black musicians in New Orleans: Song for My Fathers, by Tom Sancton (2006)
Being the only African-American commercial deep-sea diver working in Southeast Asia, the Middle East, and Africa: Black Man Under the Deep Blue Sea, by Tony Wells (2007)

It's not an exhaustive list obviously, but there are some books here I've never heard of and definitely would want to read. What memoirs would you add on to this list? To read the entire article click here.



Antoinette said...

*Secret Daughter: A Mixed-Race Daughter and the Mother Who Gave Her Away* by June Cross.

This one stayed with me for a while: white mother "denies" her black daughter; sends her away to be raised by a black couple.

Me said...


I loved this book too and came away shocked that the mother, even in advanced age, couldn't come clean about her daughter.

Thanks for reading the Meltingpot.