In a U.S. national survey conducted for this book, 70% of respondents strongly agreed that friendships across racial lines are essential to making progress toward improving race relations. However, further polling found that most Americans tend to gravitate towards friendships within their own racial category.
Psychologist Deborah L. Plummer tells us why that is so. She examines how factors such as leisure, politics, humor, faith, social media, and education influence the nature and intensity of cross-racial friendships. With engaging stories and inspiring anecdotes drawn from national focus groups, interviews, and analyses of survey results of contemporary patterns of adult friendships, she provides insights into the fears and discomforts associated with cross-racial friendships. Through these narratives and social analyses of friendship patterns, Plummer explores how we make connections to form solid bonds, and why it is so challenging to do so across a racial divide. She discusses how we cross that divide and get beyond the prickly uncomfortable moments and have meaningful, enlightening, empathetic conversations about race.
With the inclusion of personal stories, this book stirs up authentic racial discourse, prompts readers to examine their own friendship patterns, and encourages us all to create a better path toward a more enlightened future by crossing racial lines in friendship and deepening the strength of current cross-racial friends.