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Publisher's Summary

Called "powerful and provocative" by Dr. Ibram X. Kendi, author of the New York Times best-selling How to Be an Antiracist, this explosive book of history and cultural criticism reveals how White feminism has been used as a weapon of white supremacy and patriarchy deployed against Black and Indigenous women and women of color.

Taking us from the slave era, when White women fought in court to keep "ownership" of their slaves, through the centuries of colonialism, when they offered a soft face for brutal tactics, to the modern workplace, White Tears/Brown Scars tells a charged story of White women's active participation in campaigns of oppression. It offers a long overdue validation of the experiences of women of color. 

Discussing subjects as varied as The Hunger Games, Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez, the viral BBQ Becky video, and 19th-century lynchings of Mexicans in the American Southwest, Ruby Hamad undertakes a new investigation of gender and race. She shows how the division between innocent White women and racialized, sexualized women of color was created and why this division is crucial to confront. 

Along the way, there are revelatory responses to questions like: Why are White men not troubled by sexual assault on women? (See Christine Blasey Ford.) With rigor and precision, Hamad builds a powerful argument about the legacy of white superiority that we are socialized within, a reality that we must apprehend in order to fight.

©2020 Ruby Hamad (P)2020 Random House Audio

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What listeners say about White Tears/Brown Scars

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  • Overall
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A Must Read

Ruby Hamad has really challenged everything I thought I knew about race, women, feminism and the privilege I have as a white woman. After listening to the incredible performance of this book I felt immediately that I needed to have the print version.
Diana

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Powerful and eye opening

I listened to this book for the full 7 hours straight. Absorbing each and every word. she has expressed what most brown/black women have thought for years. it is time the world got a view of what we see everyday.

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A must read for anyone who claims intersectional feminism

This book was excellent in every way. As someone who has read a fair number of feminist and anti racist books I thought I would hear a few new ideas or thought provoking concepts. I was amazed by how much I feel I got out of this. It is a must read.

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Excellent, thorough and well-researched

History tied to current day scenario across the world, Ruby Hamad is a master at bringing together contexts and timelines.

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Amazing and thought-provoking

This book was emotionally challenging, deeply insightful, and poignant. Amazing work and essential to read.

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This is what we needed

A powerful book with a tremendous impact. The author's ability to connect the past with the present and personal experiences with systems of power is inspiring. I couldn't stop listening.

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Should be Required Reading....

I listed to this book in a short period and I have some great bookmarks. I will be reviewing the book again for any important topics I may have missed during the first reading. Great voice and cadence of the reader.

I implore others to give this book a read. It will definately be enlightening for many people.

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Fantastic

Well written, succinct and eye opening. If you want to learn about whites women’s complicity in racism, this is a great place to start. (Said as a white woman who is hopefully an ally)

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  • Gabriella Hernandez
  • 2021-05-06

Though provoking and Important

This book is very well constructed and throughout the book the author draws on lots of historical resources and clearly articulated her thought process and conclusions regarding white women’s pivotal role in colonialism and upholding the patriarchy. That being said, the clear and systematic way the author laid out her ideas and sources was key in how she conveys her argument: so I was a bit surprised how in the conclusion of the book the author chooses to focus on environmental colonialism (mostly because it was really not a major point of her book thus far at all and seemed to be newly introduced in the conclusion) amongst other things, and relies mostly on conjecture and doesn’t lay out her argument with the same academic rigor that was present throughout the entire book.

That’s not to say I disagree with most of her statements in the conclusion, it’s just that it was a stark difference from the previous 90% of the book. It was just a very jarring change to bring up topics that were at best tangentially mentioned earlier in the book and then the latter half of the conclusion is devoted to them.

Overall it was a very good book, and the author draws on sources from the United States as well as Australia, amongst other places, and the sources from Australia were very interesting because while they mirror the colonial history of so many different parts of the world, I personally hadn’t read much of Australia’s colonial history and found them insightful. Would definitely recommend this book as a must read for anyone.

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  • Halth ToLon
  • 2021-07-05

Opened my eyes tonso much!

I really enjoyed this. Not from the perspective of entertainment but from a perspective of how my white maleness has blinded me to so many issues experienced by racialized woman. Thank you!

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  • Kimberly
  • 2021-05-23

A must read for all people

This book is eye-opening. It reveals and sheds light on things known to many minorities and POC. Challenge yourself and change the narrative. Please read this book!

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  • JustSayin
  • 2021-01-30

Enlightening

This book is informative and enlightening . st times, it sounded like dissertation. No doubt some will find it as an attack on Anglo women. Stick with it. There are truths here.

2 people found this helpful

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  • emoon
  • 2021-01-26

Excellent in every way!!

This performance and book are excellent in every way. The information and lived experience shared in this novel are a must listen/know for living as a white women in our world. These are the books that should be required reading for anyone who calls themselves “woke” or “ally”. Anti racism is the work of Never stoping learning and being better. Thank you Ruby Hamad for this generosity.

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  • Michelle Daniels
  • 2021-11-27

Enduring questions answered

It’s hard to describe the feeling of learning what what you already knew. But that’s the closest I can get to discovering Hamad’s carefully researched and constructed argument that white women have way more power than we’re all led to believe.

1 person found this helpful

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  • Anonymous User
  • 2021-05-06

Something unique

This book talks about history in a way that is actually interesting and different. Really appreciate hearing about real life experiences in the work place. Helped me think about not just my situation but the entire system itself. Really recommend to anyone who wants to hear about sexism, feminism & white girl tears.

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  • Caitlin Poll
  • 2021-01-11

A must read if you live in a world with women.

As a white woman this was an incredible resource, showing the entire system and my place in it. I’m so incredibly grateful to have found this book.

1 person found this helpful

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  • a-a-ron
  • 2020-12-14

A must read for all while women

Ruby Hamad outlines the violent history of how women have upheld and continue to uphold white supremacy. A must read for all white women. You don’t have to be a Becky or a Karen for this book to be worth your while.

1 person found this helpful

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  • Professor S
  • 2020-11-28

Complex truth

Intricate storyline/history that is eloquently written. Thought provoking and informative. Hope this sparks movement towards liberation.

1 person found this helpful