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Welcome to the United States of Race

A publication about experiencing race by DB Crema

Original Artwork by Aly Creative Co. produced for United States of Race

Join our new Publication: United States of Race

I want to share this new publication with you, my dear fellow ILLUMINATION readers, as part of our mutual pursuit of literary excellence, constant inquiry, and shared dedication to storytelling. I present this to you in the spirit of collaboration, and I’m thankful to Dr Mehmet Yildiz for always advancing the pursuit of diverse stories and opinions.

Over the summer of 2020, at the height of racial justice protests in the U.S. and across the globe, I took the lead in several race conversations within my professional networks.

They were not easy conversations, and I could tell my colleagues were simultaneously concerned about saying the wrong thing and cautious about forming negative opinions of others.

The fear of being misconstrued made the conversations feel jolted and tense. I searched for the perfect facilitation guide to help us open a productive conversation. Then I found the following question that changed the face of our discussions.

What is an early and powerful memory of race (not necessarily racism) that still informs how you navigate relationships where race is a factor?

I asked each participant to reflect on this and share as much or as little as they wanted. What ensued was one of the most powerful conversations I have experienced. Sharing those early memories built better understanding among each other, creating a stronger sense of community, irrespective of our individual social and political beliefs.

By sharing the stories of when we first learned we are all different, we find the common thread that shows us how much we are all the same.

From that experience, I realized not only the power of personal storytelling but also the desperate need for creating space to listen and learn from each other.

As a society, we are becoming increasingly polarized — politically, socially, economically, and racially. While we all have strong opinions about the topic of race, it is notable that we seem to be getting caught within our own echo chambers, primarily sharing our views and experiences with like-minded people. This makes it increasingly difficult to foster understanding across different-minded people. Empathy is in short supply.

About United States of Race

United States of Race is a publication dedicated to exploring race in our society — from our earliest childhood memories to navigating the social constructs we live and operate in today.

The publication is for and about anyone who believes in the power of personal storytelling.

We use stories to build connections and create empathy through shared experiences. With this publication, by centering the personal experience, we find stories unique to the individual yet universal to the human experience.

Write for United States of Race

Do you have a compelling story to share about your earliest memories of race?

We welcome deeply personal and poignant stories from people of all races, ethnicities, ages, genders, political and social beliefs, and geographic locations.

Think back to when you were a child, navigating social interactions for the first time, and learning about the world around you. How did you learn about race? What were you told, who were you with, how did it feel, what understanding did you take away, and how did it influence your future interactions related to race? How do you navigate the topic of race today?

This publication is not about endorsing or discrediting anyone’s views. We leave it up to the reader to draw their own conclusions. Rather, in a respectful and non-judgmental way, the aim is to broaden perspectives on race through the power of personal storytelling.

Review our submission guidelines:

Read Recent Stories from United States of Race:

We look forward to hearing from you!

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