Surviving the White Gaze: A Memoir Audiobook, by Rebecca Carroll Play Audiobook Sample

Surviving the White Gaze: A Memoir Audiobook

Surviving the White Gaze: A Memoir Audiobook, by Rebecca Carroll Play Audiobook Sample
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Read By: Rebecca Carroll Publisher: Simon & Schuster Audio Listen Time: at 1.0x Speed 5.00 hours at 1.5x Speed 3.75 hours at 2.0x Speed Release Date: February 2021 Format: Unabridged Audiobook Delivery: Instant Download ISBN: 9781797119380

Quick Stats About this Audiobook

Total Audiobook Chapters:


Longest Chapter Length:

15:48 minutes

Shortest Chapter Length:

04 seconds

Average Chapter Length:

07:14 minutes

Audiobooks by this Author:


Publisher Description

A stirring and powerful memoir from black cultural critic Rebecca Carroll recounting her painful struggle to overcome a completely white childhood in order to forge her identity as a black woman in America.

Rebecca Carroll grew up the only black person in her rural New Hampshire town. Adopted at birth by artistic parents who believed in peace, love, and zero population growth, her early childhood was loving and idyllic—and yet she couldn’t articulate the deep sense of isolation she increasingly felt as she grew older.

Everything changed when she met her birth mother, a young white woman, who consistently undermined Carroll’s sense of her blackness and self-esteem. Carroll’s childhood became harrowing, and her memoir explores the tension between the aching desire for her birth mother’s acceptance, the loyalty she feels toward her adoptive parents, and the search for her racial identity. As an adult, Carroll forged a path from city to city, struggling along the way with difficult boyfriends, depression, eating disorders, and excessive drinking. Ultimately, through the support of her chosen black family, she was able to heal.

Intimate and illuminating, Surviving the White Gaze is a timely examination of racism and racial identity in America today, and an extraordinarily moving portrait of resilience.

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“Carroll shows, page after page, how the journey to, and through, survival, necessitates unrelenting interrogation of the nation’s cauldron of innocence. Carroll has crafted a book as textured, layered and effective as any memoir penned in the 21st century.”

— Kiese Laymon, author of Heavy: An American Memoir 


  • “Carroll’s memoir is intelligent, melancholic, and searching. She reveals that just past survival, it is possible to find peace, and joy.”

    — Roxane Gay, New York Times bestselling author
  • "Surviving the White Gaze is an absolute gift to the reader: unputdownable, edifying, deeply moving.”

    — Jami Attenberg, author of All Grown Up

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About Rebecca Carroll

Rebecca Carroll is the author of several interview-based books about race and blackness in America. She is also host of the podcast Come Through with Rebecca Carroll and a cultural critic at station WNYC, where she also develops and produces a broad array of multi-platform content, and hosts live event series in The Greene Space. She is a former critic at large for the Los Angeles Times, and her personal essays, cultural commentary, profiles and opinion pieces have appeared in The Atlantic, New York Times, London Guardian, Essence, New York magazine, Ebony, and Esquire, among other publications.