Internet slams Canadian writer who “disguised” himself as a Black man for new book

A Canadian journalist’s book announcement has received a ton of reaction on social media, and not because it seems like a good read.

Samuel Forster, who has written for the National Post, announced his new book on X titled Seven Shoulders on Tuesday. His post was quickly flooded with comments criticizing the author and calling him out for the premise of his work.

That’s because Forster — who appears to be a white man — said he dressed up as a Black person to write the book.

“Last summer, I disguised myself as a Black man and travelled throughout the United States to document how racism persists in American society,” wrote Forster on X, noting the book will be out on May 30.

The writer said it was “one of the hardest things I’ve ever done as a journalist.”

In the time since being posted earlier today, Forster’s announcement has generated a lot of reaction with much of the internet asking why he thought disguising himself as a Black person was okay.

“You could have easily just believed Black people about their own experiences,” wrote one X user.

Others were very suspicious about just how Forster had “disguised” himself, questioning if he used Blackface.

Others pointed out that Forster was essentially profiting off of racism.

“Instead of buying this book from a white author who travelled the country in Black face, read and listen to actual Black people about our lived experience,” wrote another commenter. “Profiting off of Black face and racism is nasty work.”

Others got their hands on the overview of Seven Shoulders that is currently available on Amazon and Google, which describes the book “as the most important book on American race relations that has ever been written.”

A social media user said the book “should never see the light of day.”

“This book overview has to be satire,” said another X user.

Another person shared a clip from the ’90s TV show Boy Meets World that touched on the 1961-published book Black Like Me.

The book’s author, a white man named John Howard Griffin, temporarily darkened his skin to document what life was like for Black people in the American South during the time of segregation.

The clip manages to perfectly sum up what many felt about Forster and his book.

Forster has not yet publicly commented on the backlash he has received from his book announcement.

According to his biography, the Canadian-American journalist was born and raised in Edmonton and has reported on happenings in Ukraine and the Middle East.