You Can’t Touch My Hair by Phoebe Robinson
I was lucky enough to learn about Phoebe Robinson when a friend recommended I listen to Two Dope Queens, the comedy podcast she hosts with Jessica Williams (of The Daily Show fame). She is a stand-up comedian and writer, and You Can’t Touch My Hair is her first book. It’s a collection of essays that take on topics as varied as black hair, guilty pleasures, and advice for her niece.
I write in my books, and I found myself underlining a lot in this one. I wasn’t just underlining the funny one-liners that had me chuckling out loud; mostly I was marking up her social commentary. Her chapter on “The Angry Black Woman Myth” should be required reading for white people. She also weighs in on the challenges people of color face in the entertainment industry, illustrating that section with sample composite casting calls that are both hilarious and deeply fucked up.
I could probably sit with this so I can provide a more thorough review, but I want to get this up there in case someone is looking for their next good read. If you like good writing, and serious issues discussed with a clever, strong voice, I think you’ll enjoy this one.
Also, check out the 2 Dope Queens podcast.