From the writer crowned one of the smartest, funniest voices in modern America, this hotly anticipated debut collection of essays offers “a precious glimpse into how Ziwe’s uniquely fearless mind functions” (New York Magazine)
Ziwe made a name for herself by asking guests like Alyssa Milano, Fran Lebowitz, and Chet Hanks direct questions. In Black Friend, she turns her incisive perspective on both herself and the culture at large. Throughout the book, Ziwe combines pop-culture commentary and personal stories, which grapple with her own (mis)understanding of identity. From a hilarious case of mistaken identity via a jumbotron to a terrifying fight-or-flight encounter in the woods, Ziwe raises difficult questions for comedic relief.
From Black Friend’s Introduction:
“Today, I learned that my book is ranked as the #1 new release in ‘Discrimination and Racism’ on Amazon. Wow. This is a huge honor, especially considering my stiff competition in the selfpublished manifestos space. Unfortunately, this victory is bittersweet. I worry that people may get the wrong idea and think that I am pro-racism when in actuality, I am indifferent. Still, I’d love to thank everyone who made this possible. I solemnly swear to write the most discriminatory book in American history. I hope I can make you proud.
“Just kidding . . . I will not marginalize you . . . unless that’s your kink. This book of essays offers moments of extreme discomfort (and the subsequent growth) in my life around the role of ‘black friend.’ Black friends come in all shapes and sizes. Yet the archetype is often a two-dimensional character meant to support the non-black protagonists’ more complex humanity. Some black friends exist as the comic relief, like Donkey in any of the Shrek movies. Some are the sassy friend, like Louise from St. Louis in Sex and the City. Still others are the inexplicably sagacious companion, like Morpheus in The Matrix. It’s impossible for these individual portraits to reflect my complicated reality. To start, they are fictional. One of them is a talking ass. I do not exist just to move plot. While I am a supportive friend, I am not a supporting character. I am the protagonist of my perfectly imperfect story.”
“One of the smartest, funniest voices in modern America.”
“The intimate selections offer a rare look beneath Ziwe’s comedic persona, and the humor amuses . . . .energetic mix of comedy and personal reflection”
“It’s got a light touch but sharp nails.”
“a precious glimpse into how Ziwe’s uniquely fearless mind functions”
—Vulture, New York Magazine