Emotional Justice - Esther Armah: AMAZING BOOK!


EMOTIONAL JUSTICE: A Roadmap for Racial Healing – Esther A Armah – is an incredible, amazing book which I would highly recommend for most people who are open to working on racism issues.   For white men, The Best; for white women – quite, quite valuable; for others I would imagine equally valuable.

The Author kindly posing with me – White Privilege Conference – Tulsa – 2024

When Esther Armah spoke at the Privilege Institute’s 2024 Conference in Tulsa three months ago, everyone I talked with was amazed at what she said!   Robin DiAngelo (“White Fragility”) one of two Foreward writer in the book, as well as one interviewed in the book, was a facilitator and attendee at this Conference.   Many other notable people like Peggy McIntosh, as well as many incredible BIPOC, were also greatly impressed!   I’d never heard of Armah, and now I share her name with a lot of others!

Lena Dunham shows how a woman upholds, through intimacy, this narrative of whiteness manifest in white masculinity. … Murray Miller was a white male writer on the show.   Dunham describes him as a dear, supportive friend, who had affirmed her, her work, and the show.  Aurora Perrineau was a Black actress on the show.  She alleges that Murray Miller raped her when she was seventeen. (p.49) … Dunham intimated that Aurora was a liar and released a public statement defending Miller on Twitter. (p.50)  … Dunham went on to pen an apology in the Hollywood Reporter.  She wrote: “It’s painful to realize that, while I thought I was self-aware, I had actually internalized the dominant white male agenda that asks us to defend it no matter what.” … What Dunham describes is how intimacy allows the language of whiteness to flourish. … Lena is upholding the white masculinity narrative that requires white women to believe, bolster, and be there.

(p.57) Toxic Masculinity …

The truth, though – and it is not one we have been willing to wrestle with – is that shedding that toxic masculinity doesn’t necessarily include relinquishing the emotional relationship to power and race, which is about being dominant, superior and the single authority.  I mean, if you’re asking white men to tweak a li’l, that’s one thing.  We have a multimillion industry of tweaking, it’s called “diversity.”  But if you’re asking white men to transform – which is what racial repair and healing  require – that’s world changing, for all of us.  For white men, that is soul changing.

Too many white men are willing to make change as long as that change doesn’t change them.  The language of whiteness teaches and enshrines that ehy – white men – are by default the solution, and therefore never the problem, never the issue.   So they’re not the ones needing changing.


Let’s talk about emotional mammies.  It’s an Emotional Justice term.  It’s when women of the global majority are expected to take carae of the feelings of white people – white women – all men – no matter the cost or consequences to their being, their body, no matter the harm. (p.97)

White progressives use political arguments to engage what is actually emotional.  The reason there will always be a disconnect is that they have nothing to do with each other.   You can be an ideologically sound, philosophically pure, and a politically progressive as a person can be, but that has noting to do with who you are in the world and a human being when it comes to your connection to race and whiteness, because that has to do with soul and essence and fear – and how much white supremacy is rooted in ideas of subjugation and exploitation and domination.   (p.106-7)

The emotional connection to whiteness protects itself whenever it feels threatened. 

The Emotional Justice Template

Work through your feelings.  Flee, deny, being defensive, white tears, anger.  Wanting to run, being triggered, manufacturing threat, resorting to white tears.  Uncertainty, insecurity, frustration, resentment, reward, change.  (p. 114-5)

Blackness is about deficit and whiteness about world building and people saving.  That is the language of rerimagining history to serve injustice, entrench inequity, and feed white supremacy.   This is the politics of whiteness, millions of global folk get this.  That they get this politically doesn’t always mean that they get it emotionally, and it is in the emotional that harm is perpetrated … (p.121)


This is an amazing 147 page book!   I have no idea if the quotes above can help clear readers vision of Esther Armah’s amazing, heart, spirit, insights, writing, and so much more!

I highly recommend that potential readers go to Esther Armah’s website at: https://www.theaiej.com/ - and see herself in her own words!   Her book is an excellent additional potential source of so much!



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