Well, That Escalated Quickly: Memoirs and Mistakes of an Accidental Activistby Franchesca Ramsey Published 22 May 2018
|Well, That Escalated Quickly: Memoirs and Mistakes of an Accidental Activist.pdf|
|Publisher||Grand Central Publishing|
In this sharp, funny, and incredibly timely collection of personal essays, veteran video blogger and star of MTV's Decoded Franchesca Ramsey explores race, identity, online activism, and the downfall of real communication in the age of social media rants, trolls, and call-out wars.
Franchesca Ramsey didn't set out to be an activist. Or a comedian. Or a commentator on identity, race, and culture, really. But then her YouTube video "What White Girls Say. . . to Black Girls" went viral. Twelve million views viral. Faced with an avalanche of media requests, fan letters, and hate mail, she had two choices: Jump in and make her voice heard or step back and let others frame the conversation. After a crash course in social justice and more than a few foot-in-mouth moments, she realized she had a unique talent and passion for breaking down injustice in America in ways that could make people listen and engage.
In her first book, Ramsey uses her own experiences as an accidental activist to explore the many ways we communicate with each other--from the highs of bridging gaps and making connections to the many pitfalls that accompany talking about race, power, sexuality, and gender in an unpredictable public space...the internet.
WELL, THAT ESCALATED QUICKLY includes Ramsey's advice on dealing with internet trolls and low-key racists, confessions about being a former online hater herself, and her personal hits and misses in activist debates with everyone from bigoted Facebook friends and misguided relatives to mainstream celebrities and YouTube influencers. With sharp humor and her trademark candor, Ramsey shows readers we can have tough conversations that move the dialogue forward, rather than backward, if we just approach them in the right way.
"Well, That Escalated Quickly: Memoirs and Mistakes of an Accidental Activist" Reviews
Engaging and likable -- with complete patience and lots of self-disclosure -- Ramsey teaches us how to be higher-minded while reassuring us that it's an ongoing process for her too.
This book is less memoir and more guide to how to critique and be critiqued, told through her own mistakes and experiences. I have somewhat followed Fran's career (i.e. I followed her on Snapchat and tried to remember to watch The Nightly Show) so was somewhat familiar with lots of the stories she shares but appreciated being reintroduced to them from her current perspective. A really fast, enjoyable read and a good reminder that we can all do better.
Franchesca Ramsey has been an Internet personality I've enjoyed watching since she joined MTV's Decoded. She's smart, open, and willing to learn just as much as she's willing to guide & teach. This book was basically activism 101, and is absolutely something I would have enjoyed deeper if It had come up a few years ago. As I am further into my activism journey, this felt redundant. That being said, just because it wasn't applicable for me, doesn't mean it's not relevant. I think this is a fine book for folks just starting their journey, but can be passed up by folks a little more well-seasoned in the activism world.
I learned a whole lot. The internet is mean, people can be hateful and we live in the era of call out culture. I also learned that it's important to respect the culture and sensitivities of others, to stand solidly in my own truth while keeping an empathetic mindset and that it's useless to argue with internet trolls.
Francesca moved my needle on a particular topic: interracial dating and marriage. It's already hard for them and their families to navigate and it's none of my business. To each his own, love and respect to everyone. You can be woke and socially conscious and still be in an interracial relationship. I have a ways to go to be on the pro side of the argument but the needle has moved closer to the middle.
The book delves into all the pitfalls of the social media era, call out culture, call-in culture, hash tags, and social justice. I'm more internet savvy for having read it and also considerably more woke than before. I finally get intersectionality. Thanks Francesca.
I received this book for free through Goodreads Giveaways. As always, an honest review.
Well That Escalated Quickly: Memoirs and Mistakes of an Accidental Activist tells the story of Francesca Ramsey’s journey into activism. She starts as a YouTuber with a moderate following and still works her normal daytime job. When her video, Shit White Girls Say to Black Girls, goes viral her life changes. While it’s not immediate stardom, a lot of people have seen her videos and her voice reaches many more people than before. While she didn’t set out to be an activist, she was calling out racism, sexism, and overall not so great behavior. The book takes us through her journey into activism including all the struggles along the way.
I enjoyed the book for it’s serious yet light hearted approach to activism. Sometimes I was cringing along with the author’s stories. I would suggest this memoir to anyone who wants a, dare I say fun, easy approach to learning more about activism and social justice.
There were very few aspects of this memoir that I didn’t enjoy. Some of Franchesca’s past behavior made me cringe. She admits that she was wrong and how she remedied the situations, but they weren’t my favorite parts to read. Also, some of the detail oriented aspects about a career online weren’t the most intriguing parts to me. If you’re interested in that career field, then you might feel differently.
The biggest appeal for me was the honest way the author tells her story. She doesn’t sugar coat or dumb down things, nor does she try to make people feel ignorant. She’s inclusive. She wants to invite people to hear her story and learn along the way. I especially enjoyed the list of offensive words that people don’t realize they’re using and why they’re problematic. Such examples include spirit animal, spas, and lame. I also loved the eulogies for cringe worthy comments; a list of ignorant offensive things that people say and good intelligent comebacks to them. Franchesca also mentions the importance of self care for activists. I especially appreciated this.
Well That Escalated Quickly is a serious informative but fun book that shows the author’s quirky personality. I definitely recommend this approachable memoir.