Less than two years after leaving her job as head of the Spokane NAACP and causing a national scandal in the process, Rachel Dolezal has released a memoir, In Full Color: Finding My Place in a Black and White World, about her life.
In the nonfiction work, Dolezal discusses her relationship to her perceived blackness. And, according to an in-depth review in the New York Post, Dolezal, who has been mostly silent since the scandal, has a lot to say.
Dolezal, who recently changed her name to Nkechi Amare Diallo because she had difficulty finding work, shared with readers how she feels about her racial identity, which she has defended vehemently in the past, even though she admits she was born white.
Here are some of the most bizarre quotes from Dolezal's memoir.
She pretended to be black by covering herself in mud when she was young
"I'd stir the water from the hose into the earth ... and make thin, soupy mud, which I would then rub on my hands, arms, feet, and legs," Dolezal wrote. "I would pretend to be a dark-skinned princess in the Sahara Desert or one of the Bantu women living in the Congo ... imagining I was a different person living in a different place was one of the few ways ... that I could escape the oppressive environment I was raised in."
She picked a brown crayon to color herself
"I usually picked a brown crayon rather than a peach one. Peach simply didn't resonate with me," Dolezal claims. She said the "feeling that I was somehow different from [my family] persisted. I felt black and saw myself as black."
Rachel Dolezal loves the story of Miss Jane Pittman, a fictional black woman
Dolezal wrote she found "much-needed solace" within the book.
"I could still relate to aspects of her struggle," Dolezal writes. "I certainly wasn't enslaved ... but it wouldn't have been too much of a stretch to call me an indentured servant."
She continued, "Miss Pittman's plight and her perseverance resonated with me. I knew what it was like to be a child and have to work as hard as an adult, and how it felt to be used and abused. I also understood the pain that comes from being treated like less than a full human being ... and the fortitude required to fight this sort of injustice."
As she hung around black people, her appearance became more "Afrocentric"
"As I got more involved with the [Black Student Association], campus activism, and my artwork, the more Afrocentric my appearance became," Dolezal said.
She critiqued white people!
Dolezal said she moved to the "poor black side" of town during college to be a part of the community.
"I would laugh at jokes told at the expense of white people and lodge some pretty fierce critiques about white culture myself," she says.
She allowed the "brown crayon to emerge"
"I felt less like I was adopting a new identity and more like I was unveiling one that had been there all along," Dolezal says. "Finally able to embrace my true self, I allowed the little girl I'd colored with a brown crayon so long ago to emerge."
She became a "woke soul sista"
During her time as a professor at North Idaho College and Eastern Washington University, Dolezal felt more at peace with her racial identity.
"I was a Black-Is-Beautiful, Black liberation movement, fully conscious, woke soul sista."
Dolezal attempts to define blackness
In the book's epilogue, Dolezal dives into how she defines blackness.
"For me, Blackness is more than a set of racialized physical features," she says. "It involves acknowledging our common human ancestry with roots in Africa."
It's just like being transgender
Echoing Michelle Harris-Perry's argument that Dolezal may be "transblack," Dolezal claims her racial identity is not too different from how a transgender person experiences gender.
"Just as a transgender person might be born male but identify as female, I wasn't pretending to be something I wasn't but expressing something I already was," Dolezal says. "I wasn't passing as Black; I was Black, and there was no going back."