Brando Skyhorse

Author • Speaker • Educator

We wear the mask book cover

We Wear The Mask: 15 True Stories of Passing in America

Published by: Beacon Press
Release Date: October 10, 2017
Contributors: Brando Skyhorse, Lisa Page
216 Pages
ISBN13: 978-0807078983

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About We Wear The Mask

Why do people pass? Fifteen writers reveal their experiences with passing.

For some, “passing” means opportunity, access, or safety. Others don’t willingly pass but are “passed” in specific situations by someone else. We Wear the Mask, edited by Brando Skyhorse and Lisa Page, is an illuminating and timely anthology that examines the complex reality of passing in America.

Skyhorse, a Mexican American, writes about how his mother passed him as an American Indian before he learned who he really is. Page shares how her white mother didn’t tell friends about her black ex-husband or that her children were, in fact, biracial.

The anthology includes writing from Gabrielle Bellot, who shares the disquieting truths of passing as a woman after coming out as trans, and MG Lord, who, after the murder of her female lover, embraced heterosexuality. Patrick Rosal writes of how he “accidentally” passes as a waiter at the National Book Awards ceremony, and Rafia Zakaria agonizes over her Muslim American identity while traveling through domestic and international airports. Other writers include Trey Ellis, Marc Fitten, Susan Golomb, Margo Jefferson, Achy Obejas, Clarence Page, Sergio Troncoso, Dolen Perkins-Valdez, and Teresa Wiltz.

Praise for We Wear The Mask

“In presenting these insightful, provocative life experiences, the editors give inquisitive readers (some of whom may be passing themselves) nutritious food for thought…Sharply drawn reflections on identity fluidity, stereotypes, marginalization, and cultural assumption.”
—Kirkus Reviews

“Includes deeply personal stories of passing by 15 writers, reflecting how wide-ranging and prevalent passing is in the United States. The experiences of passing chronicled offer a prism through which to understand the numerous ways we all pass in our personal and professional lives.”
—LA Review of Books