Maybe I Don't Belong Here: A Memoir of Race, Identity, Breakdown and Recovery
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I'd originally believed Harewood to be American from the roles I'd seen him play in some excellent TV (I didn't know previously of his extensive theatre repertoire). It's a constant dialogue within yourself, but it just takes constant work to make sure that you are at ease with yourself, happy with yourself, content with yourself. And I try to tell this to all young kids that, you know, don't be afraid of failure, or don't be afraid of the hard times, the hard times, make you who you are.
He also starred in British independent film The Hot Potato,  the film also starred Ray Winstone, Colm Meaney and Jack Huston. As a black, working-class man with British and Caribbean heritage, Harewood often feels he doesn’t have a place. In 2022, Harewood voiced Destruction of the Endless in Act III of Audible's full-cast audiobook adaptation of Neil Gaiman's comic, The Sandman. But you know, we're seeing this now in Lord of the Rings, you know, we're seeing people kind of complaining. Thank you, David, for being vulnerable and helping me as a student mental health nurse to develop my understanding of experiencing psychosis.
The portrait's unveiling was accompanied by a temporary exhibition at the house focussing on Harewood's life and career. But in this book, Mr Harewood is able to articulate this experience in a way that I never thought it possible or even permissible to do.
So I, there's no way of getting through this life scrape free, you're gonna need a few bruises to make you who you are. I'm gonna start by saying I loved HomeGirl so I was aware of what David does for a living and familiar with his work but that's as far as it went. It was heartbreaking to read David Harewood’s struggle and the lack of follow up support that was provided to him when he needed it the most.You can change your choices at any time by visiting Cookie preferences, as described in the Cookie notice. I've never simultaneously wanted to cheer for and throw my arms around somebody in the public eye as much as I do David Harewood. The stereotypes and micro aggressions that come with being a black person with ill mental health and how whiteness dominates both the acting industry and the privilege afforded if we are to need mental health support. I'm reading this book somewhere in Africa finally giving up on White UK and loving my life just being me.
This memoir portrayed a very unique and emotional story that will likely stick with me for a long time to come. David deconstructs his own identity and history and, doing so, sheds a light into what it means to be black in Britain and how racism impacted his development and his mental health. I do want to say, that in the cause of defeating racism and beginning the process of healing and understanding, experiences like these need to be discussed more. I will continue to recommend this book to people who I believe to be in need of it's messages, both in terms of race and of mental health- and of both, combined.Poor mental health and racism - Harewood dives deep into the raw symbiotic relationship by laying bare his personal story. Maybe I Don't Belong Here is a groundbreaking account of the impact of everyday racism on Black mental health and a rallying cry to examine the biases that shape our society. But there is another story to Empire, there is another story to British glory which monarchy represents.
After deciding to read fewer memoirs this year because they take me longer to read, I raced through this. In the book you spoke about feeling a sense of not belonging in the white space, but also that when you moved out of Birmingham and to London, out of drama school, you also felt that a little bit in the Black space. You know one has to respect Elizabeth and respect her time on the throne and respect what she's done to the institution.
To calculate the overall star rating and percentage breakdown by star, we don’t use a simple average. So I usually ask this question last - I pretty much only interview Black people on my platform and I always finish with this question. Taking into account your kind of experience growing up not seeing someone like you in entertainment, does the idea that young boys, young girls might see you on screen and not feel a question of can I belong here? Recommended reading, especially for those non-black British who are determined to hide behind their assertion of colour-blindness.