In Black and White: A Young Barrister's Story of Race and Class in a Broken Justice System (Hardback)
  • In Black and White: A Young Barrister's Story of Race and Class in a Broken Justice System (Hardback)

In Black and White: A Young Barrister's Story of Race and Class in a Broken Justice System (Hardback)

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Hardback 272 Pages
Published: 13/08/2020
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Waterstones Says

Cogently argued and truly shocking, the institutionalised racism of the justice system laid bare by a brilliant young barrister.

Alexandra Wilson was a teenager when her dear family friend Ayo was stabbed on his way home from football. Ayo's death changed Alexandra. She felt compelled to enter the legal profession in search of answers.

As a junior criminal and family law barrister, Alexandra finds herself navigating a world and a set of rules designed by a privileged few. A world in which fellow barristers sigh with relief when a racist judge retires: 'I've got a black kid today and he would have had no hope'.

In her debut book, In Black and White, Alexandra re-creates the tense courtroom scenes, the heart-breaking meetings with teenage clients, and the moments of frustration and triumph that make up a young barrister's life.

Alexandra shows us how it feels to defend someone who hates the colour of your skin, or someone you suspect is guilty. We see what it is like for children coerced into county line drug deals and the damage that can be caused when we criminalise teenagers.

Alexandra's account of what she has witnessed as a young mixed-race barrister is in equal parts shocking, compelling, confounding and powerful.

Publisher: Octopus Publishing Group
ISBN: 9781913068288
Number of pages: 272
Weight: 425 g
Dimensions: 218 x 144 x 30 mm


'In Black and White is an absolute triumph; a compelling and courageous memoir forcing the legal profession to confront uncomfortable truths about race and class in our justice system. Alexandra Wilson is a bold and vital voice. This is a book that urgently needed to be written, and urgently needs to be read by everybody inside, and outside, the justice system.' - The Secret Barrister, bestselling author of The Secret Barrister

'I would highly recommend In Black and White. The personal narrative of a young female lawyer of mixed heritage who is defying the soft bigotry of low expectations by sharing her journey, inspires us all to do the same in our own way, and this is a powerful message which needs to be shared.' - Dr Tunde Okewale MBE, founder of Urban Lawyers

'An inspirational, clear-eyed account of life as a junior barrister is made all the more exceptional by the determination, passion, humanity and drive of its author. Anyone interested in seeing how the law really works should read it.' - Sarah Langford, bestselling author of In Your Defence

'This is the story of a young woman who overcame all the obstacles a very old profession could throw at her, and she survived, with her integrity intact.' - Benjamin Zephaniah

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“A bitterly honest account of gender,race and class in the British Justice system”

Being mixed race, female and young defies the expectations for being a barrister, even in 2020. Not that it is an easy process to get to that level, especially when, like Alexandra Wilson, that woman grows up in... More

Hardback edition
Helpful? Upvote 26

“Racism at all levels.”

This book clearly sets out how racism still exists in all levels of our society. It sets out clearly how difficult it is for BAME members of our society to progress in the judicial profession. As someone who believes... More

Hardback edition
Helpful? Upvote 24

“An excellent and thought-provoking read”

I must confess I don't read a lot of non-fiction but occasionally a book comes along that captures my imagination. In Black and White certainly did that.

Alexandra Wilson is a young, mixed-race barrister from... More

Hardback edition
Helpful? Upvote 21

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