In Caucasia—Danzy Senna’s extraordinary debut novel and national bestseller— Birdie and Cole are the daughters of a black father and a white mother. Look out for Danzy Senna’s latest book, New People, on sale in August! Birdie and Cole are the daughters of a black father and a white mother, intellectuals. Maya Jaggi on Danzy Senna’s parable of race, From Caucasia, With Love.

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A compelling look at being black and being white, Caucasia deserves to be read all over.

Caucasia: A Novel: Danzy Senna: : Books

That said, the writing in the book was hard to get past at times, showy and redundant and full of cliches. She is the daughter of two Boston based writers: For it to have been her very first book the writing was brilliant and the storytelling was captivating. Wanted to give it 3. Sandy Lee says he’s an over cauucasia ass who needs to get his nose out sennw his books and get his hands dirty for the cause. Danzy Senna is an American novelist and essayist. About daucasia all being constructed.

When Birdie starts to dress and mimic the white girls in her New Hampshire class she does so to be accepted and a part of the white community. Near the end of the school year, Birdie’s parents divorce. I would read more by this author.

CAUCASIA by Danzy Senna | Kirkus Reviews

But now it seemed clear: Not my favorite book I must honestly say, because of the strong resemblence between the tentativeness of the relationship between mother and daughter; it was very real and down to earth, which is okay, no problem with that, just Growing up in a racially tense decade of the ’70s is rough when you’re bi-racial.

Paraphrasing Walter Mosley in Devil in the Blue Dress, race in America runs both ways, it harms us all socially, financially and most of all spiritually. I was a spy in enemy territory. My father grew up in a section of Philadelphia in an Irish neighborhood bounded by the Italians, Polish and Jewish neighborhoods, with the black neighborhood on the edges, where going to Northeast Catholic meant fighting your way through the Italian, Polish and black neighborhoods both on the way to and back from school.


Byrd the youngest has difficulty at school because she is too light to be accepted by her black schoolmates. All the above are reasons why a book becomes a classic, it stands out as not just a good read but an important piece of art with something to say about the human experience. Carmen, Penelope, her classmates, and later on even Sandy deny Birdie’s blackness and expect her to behave as if she was white.

The first time I read this book was on a a rainy bus ride in the San Francisco bay area, and I surprised myself by finding myself crying, for it in many ways spoke of my sennx multiracial experience, albeit in highly fictionalized form.

She rebels against white America even as she becomes a part of it. She rejects the person she has become and throws out as “Victorian crap” her grandmother’s mantel of the “tragic mulatto”, declaring: Until I stumbled upon this beautiful novel I used to tell people “The only time you see a mixed person in literature we are not characters, we are the evidence” I still hold to that but as I discover more books like those by Danzy Senna I know that one day talking about the biracial experience will be second nature, just as talking about the Black experience is becoming more mainstream.

I fell in love with Birdie’s innocence, her voice, her crest into becoming a young woman, her racial self-discovery, her astounding sensibility, her linguistic charms, her struggles in self-definition. Nov 06, Julie rated it really liked it Recommended to Julie by: They were ver active in politics and the Black Power movement. ComiXology Thousands of Digital Comics. Does Sandy treat her two daughters differently based on their appearances? Birdie is the daughter of black Deck, an academic revolutionary, and white Sandy, the blonde, “blue-blooded” daughter of a Harvard professor, who is an activist for a black power cell.

It is worth so much dissection.

Caucasia Reader’s Guide

wenna The title, that of an imaginary Caucasia that race boxes have depicted, speaks achingly across the void the Lee family experiences, and continues throughout the entirety of the novel.

The sisters are so close that they speak their own language, yet Birdie, with her light skin and straight hair, is often mistaken for white, while Cole is dark enough to fit in with the other kids at school. But her wry, self-protecting edge sharpens as she comes of age in this familiar-but-foreign land.


At once a powerful coming-of-age story and faucasia groundbreaking work on identity and race in America, ” Caucasia deserves to be read all czucasia Glamour. Birdie can pass as white, and she feels like she doesn’t fit in anywhere or in any race. I’m white and grew up in a small town in the South in the late 70s and 80s and the portrayal of small town white culture in that era is painfully accurate: Passing is a term associated to someone who is not legally White but passes as White, facilitating their ability to assimilate in White culture.

There was a problem filtering reviews right now. Senna uses the time backdrop expertly in conveying the tension and the give and take of racial dynamics in America. I definitely recommend reading this: Sennw mother, a radical activist who is involved in some sort of dangerous activity we are never fully informed about, ends up having to leave, and she takes Birdie with caucaisa.

The canaries, he said, were used by coal miners to gauge how poisonous the air caycasia was. These were not overturned until the Supreme Court ruling Loving v. I found this to be an interesting book because Denzy Senna does a superb job of flavoring her story with an interesting combination of culture, politics and race relationships in a believable manner.

Dec 05, Tarina rated it it was amazing Recommends it for: The parents split and the father takes the dark-skinned daughter, Cole, and the mother takes the light-skinne It turns out that I am a sucker for books about biracial girls working out caucssia identities. The novel is set in Boston, Massachusetts during the turbulent mids. Eventually, her father tells her caicasia Cole is and Birdie reunites with her long lost sister.

The story follows the emotional journey of young Birdie as she struggles to identify herself without any constant role models in her life.

In the woods one night in New Hampshire, Caucasa says to Birdie: A compelling look at being black and being white, Caucasia deserves to be read all over.