Running Head: WHITE LIKE HER
White Like Her
WHITE LIKE HER
The book "White like her" by Gail Lukasik centers on the Black community and the story
of the writer's mother, Alvera Frederic Kalina, who changed her racial identity from black to
white when she wedded in 1944 and moved to Cleveland. With that move, she relinquished her
ethnic identity and black family and in her mind, became white like her new husband (Lukasik,
2017). Lukasik explores her investigation about her mother's choice to shroud her African
American background and pass for white. Set against the Jim Crow South's historical backdrop,
the book explores Lukasik's adventure to reveal the reality of her mother's ethnicity and to
comprehend her mother's choice to pass for white.
The writer tells the story of her mother's passing for white, how she concealed her racial
background from her white father, and how Lukasik uncovered her secret which led her to
discover her 'lost' family members. With the increase of racist incidents in the U.S., this story is
particularly relevant, as it uncovers the shrouded history of racial mixing. Haunted by her
mother's shame and fear, Gail sets out on a mission to reveal her mother's racial heredity, tracing
her kin back to eighteenth-century colonial Louisiana.
Lukasik's mother concealed her truth from the world until her daughter uncovered the
mystery when she was tracing her family tree. The birth certificate of her mother and that of her...
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