Interest in Reni Eddo-Lodge’s incredible book Why I’m No Longer Talking To White People About Race has skyrocketed this week in the wake of George Floyd’s murder.
In a push for justice for the 46-year-old African American man, who was killed by a white police officer earlier this week, people have taken to social media in their thousands to urge white people to educate themselves about the problem of systemic racism both in America and across the world.
As a result, people on social media have been sharing lists of books, films, TV shows and essays people can turn to learn more about this incredibly widespread problem. And one of the authors at the top of all these lists is, of course, Reni Eddo-Lodge.
This is, of course, fantastic. Eddo-Lodge’s book is a brilliant exploration of issues including systemic racism and the eradication of black history, which shines a light on what it’s like to be a person of colour in Britain today. But if you’re coming to the book for the first time – or considering buying a new copy to lend to a friend – Eddo-Lodge has an important message for you.
Taking to Twitter to respond to the increased interest in her book, Eddo-Lodge wrote: “Hello all. Monday is the third anniversary of the publication of Why I’m No Longer Talking To White People About Race. I was going to save saying something until then, as I’m on a social media hiatus, but urgent circumstances have drawn me back.
“Because of the past week’s horrible and tragic events, I’ve noticed a marked uptick in people recommending my book. I’m asking everyone who buys a copy to please match however much you bought it with a donation to the Minnesota Freedom Fund.
“Better yet, borrow a copy from a friend/your local library and donate what you would have spent to the Minnesota Freedom Fund. This book financially transformed my life and I really don’t like the idea of personally profiting every time a video of a black person’s death goes viral.”
Eddo-Lodge also went on to reveal that she is donating to the Minnesota Freedom Fund and will be doing so again when she receives her royalty payment for this quarter.
She added: “If you’re going to buy a copy, please order from your local independent bookshop (let’s keep them going during this pandemic) and also donate to your local and national racial justice organisations, if you can spare the funds. Thanks everyone.”
Image: Mark Harrison