GENRE: Non Fiction
TOPICS: Black History, Essays, Society

The Good Immigrant

The book is a selection of short essays written by men and women from across the African and Asian diasporas each sharing their experiences of life in the UK. Each account is only ten to twelve pages long, which makes the book ideal for multiple readings, dipping in and picking a different piece each time.

The subjects covered include, amongst others: the appropriation of language; the anglicisation of names; being scrutinised at airports (despite being a well-known actor); the importing of American ideas of blackness and black history over the myriad examples available from within our own country; and children from diverse backgrounds not seeing people like themselves in books. There are some well known names amongst the authors (Reni Eddo-Lodge makes an appearance a year before her book was released and made her a household name) – some are known for their work in the field of equalities whilst others are from other areas of the arts.

There is a power to this anthology because every essay is personal and heartfelt – this is not some abstract concept or theory; these are real people sharing real lives. Michael Kimmel said that privilege is invisible to those who have it – read this book and that will no longer be the case.

REVIEWED BY: David Bartlett