Academic journal article The Qualitative Report

Stories to Be Told: A Qualitative Book Review of How Dare We! Write – A Multicultural Creative Writing Discourse

Academic journal article The Qualitative Report

Stories to Be Told: A Qualitative Book Review of How Dare We! Write – A Multicultural Creative Writing Discourse

Article excerpt

This book is a collection of stories that writers of color and LGBTQAI+ writers have experienced and are still experiencing as writers in a literary world where their voices are silenced, and their experiences are not represented. The 24 stories written in the book are interconnected, and each story shows challenges and possibility that the writers have experienced and have seen as minority writers. The book was written not only to convey the stories of writers of color, to which emerging writers of color can relate, but also to provide a space for many people of color to feel less alone-whether they are writers or academicians in the United States' racialized society.

The book consists of five sections: Literary Keepers (and other myths), The Tyranny of Grammar, Identity(ies), Personal Narratives, Rejection Not an Option, and Healing the Heart. In each part, the authors rewrite and retell stories that have not been read or heard for a long time in White America. The writers share their experiences of being silenced by the White Standard of academia. The writers also write about the process of how they have managed to find who they are as writers of color in a world where their stories are often erased and miswritten by the mainstream American culture.

The authors suggest that the English language impacts the writers of color in so far as the writers may not be able to fully express their cultures through the Standard English sanctioned by the White culture. The writers have broken the rules of English to reach an audience who wants to be touched by their stories. Many writers of color endeavor to write stories with which people of color can resonate, regardless of what their racial backgrounds are.

In the book, the writers also share their personal narratives that show that everyone has a different story to tell, not just stereotyped ones. When the writers of color write the stories that represent their cultures and their races, many writers experience rejections from their publishers, who often ask them to change their stories to fit into the stereotypes created by the mainstream American culture. The book ends by telling the narratives of the writers of color who have used creating writing as a way to heal their experiences of rejection and silence. …

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