May 16, 2023
We’ve spoken about cross-racial solidarity a few times, but never with quite the beautifully illustrative stories and historical references and personally motivating oomph that we did today. And I think it’s important to note that this conversation is one that happened between the three of us, all identifying as Asian and American, about topics that involve not only our shared Japanese American and Asian American history but included a focus on how we collectively combat White supremacy.
We get to speak with David Mura, author of The Stories Whiteness Tells Itself - yes, it’s quite the title - and if you have any desire to make any change in this country whatsoever, you’ll want to commit to listening to this conversation in its entirety. We absolutely loved it.
What to listen for:
David’s personal upbringing as a third-generation Japanese American, whose American parents were incarcerated in the internment camps on US soil - and therefore raised him to “want to be white”
How his lens changed, and importantly, why the lens we tell stories through matters so, so much
Stories about Thomas Jefferson, Abraham Lincoln, and how we need to include “AND” in their narratives - they were great AND they were racist slaveowners
The actions white people need to take - knowledge and social interactions, a spiritual journey, and a political commitment
Cross-racial, Asian-Black solidarity
About David Mura:
David Mura is an essayist, memoirist, poet, and fiction writer who brings a unique perspective to our multi-racial and multi-cultural society. A third-generation Japanese-American, he has written intimately about his life as a man of color and the connections between race, culture, and history. In public appearances interweaving poetry, performance, and personal testament, he provides powerful insights into the racial issues facing America today.
Mura's memoirs, poems, essays, plays, and performances have won wide critical praise and numerous awards. Their topics range from contemporary Japan to the legacy of the internment camps and the history of Japanese Americans to critical explorations of an increasingly diverse America. He gives presentations at educational institutions, businesses, and other organizations throughout the country.
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