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Light brown skinned woman with dark brown, shoulder-length, curly hair in a black sweater and holding an open brown book. She stands in front of a light blue background.

Resources on Black-White
Racial Passing

Books on Passing

  • An Imperative Duty by William Dean Howells (1891)

  • Désirée’s Baby by Kate Chopin (1893)

  • Pudd'nhead Wilson by Mark Twain (1894)

  • The Wife of His Youth and Other Stories of the Color-Line by Charles W. Chesnutt (1899)

  • The House Behind the Cedars by Charles W. Chesnutt (1900)

  • The Autobiography of an Ex-Colored Man by James Weldon Johnson (1912)

  • Flight by Walter White (1926)

  • Show Boat by Edna Ferber (1926)

  • Plum Bun by Jessie Redmon Fauset (1928)

  • Quicksand by Nella Larsen (1928) 

  • Passing by Nella Larsen (1929)

  • Black No More by George S. Schuyler (1931)

  • Light in August by William Faulkner (1932)

  • The Ways of White Folk by Langston Hughes (1934)

  • Caucasia by Danzy Senna (1998)

  • The Human Stain by Philip Roth (2000)

  • Passing by Nella Larsen, Carla Kaplan (Editor) Norton Critical Edition (2007)

  • Boy, Snow, Bird by Helen Oyeyemi (2014)

  • The Gilded Years by Karin Tanabe (2016) - Anita Hemmings Hist. Fic.

  • We Cast a Shadow by Maurice Carlos Ruffin (2019)

  • The Vanishing Half by Brit Bennett (2020)

  • The Personal Librarian by Marie Benedict & Victoria Christopher Murray (June 2021)

  • Running a Thousand Miles for Freedom by Ellen and William Craft (1860)

  • Who is Black? By James F. Davis (1991)

  • Passing and the Fictions of Identity, edited by Elaine K. Ginsberg (1996)

  • Neither Black Nor White Yet Both by Werner Sollors (1997)

  • Shades of Citizenship by Melissa Nobles (2000)

  • Crossing the Line: Racial Passing in Twentieth-Century U.S. Literature and Culture by Gayle Wald (2000) 

  • Black Puritan, Black Republican: the life and thoughts of Lemuel Haynes, 1753-1833 by John Saillant (2002)

  • Passing for White: Race, Religion, and the Healy Family, 1820-1920 by James O’Toole (2002)

  • Race Passing and American Individualism by Kathleen Pfeiffer (2003)

  • The Mulatta and the Politics of Race by Teresa C. Zakodnik (2004)

  • One Drop: My Father's Hidden Life - A Story of Race and Family Secrets by Bliss Broyard (2007)

  • What Comes Naturally: Miscegenation Law and The Making if Race In America by Peggy Pascoe (2009)

  • Property Rites: The Rhinelander Trial, Passing, and the Protection of Whiteness by Elizabeth M. Smith-Pryor (2009)

  • What Is "your" Race?: The Census and Our Flawed Efforts to Classify Americans by Kenneth Prewitt (2013)

  • Light, Bright and Damn Near White: Black Leaders Created by the One-Drop Rule by Michelle Gordon Jackson (2014)

  • A Chosen Exile: A History of Racial Passing in America by Allyson Hobbs (2014)

  • Neo-Passing: Performing Identity after Jim Crow edited by Millie Godfrey and Vershawn Ashanti Young (2018)

  • Girl in Black and White: The Story of Mary Mildred Williams and the Abolition Movement by Jessie Morgan-Owens (2019)

Other Books

  • History of Racism in the U.S.

    • Stamped from the Beginning by Ibram X. Kendi

    • Caste by Isabel Wilkerson

  • Immigration & Legality

    • Impossible Subjects by Mae M. Ngai

    • Imaginary Lines by Patrick Ettinger

  • Chinese Exclusion

    • At America's Gates by Erika Lee

  • Race, Wealth, and Power

    • The Address Book by Deidre Mask


  • Veiled Aristocrats, 1932

  • Imitation of Life, 1934 & 1959

  • Lost Boundaries, 1949

  • Pinky, 1949

  • Show Boat (1951)

  • The Human Stain (2003)

  • Passing (2021) based on Nella Larsen’s novel

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