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Stuff White People Like [Paperback]

Christian Lander
3.3 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (61 customer reviews)

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Book Description

1 Oct 2009
They love nothing better than sipping free trade gourmet coffee, leafing through the Sunday papers, and riding their bikes to the local farmer's market. Apple products, indie music, food co-ops and vintage T-shirts make them weak at the knees.

Product details

  • Paperback: 224 pages
  • Publisher: Hardie Grant Books (1 Oct 2009)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1740667026
  • ISBN-13: 978-1740667029
  • Product Dimensions: 23 x 15.4 x 2.2 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 3.3 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (61 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 446,708 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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Product Description

About the Author

CHRISTIAN LANDER is the creator of the website Stuff White People Like. He is a Ph.D. dropout who was the 2006 public speaking instructor of the year at Indiana University. He has lived in Toronto, Montreal, Copenhagen, Tucson, Indiana, and now Los Angeles, where he lives with his wife, Jess, a photographer who contributed many of the photos in the book.

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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews
5 of 5 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars I laughed until I passed out 28 Nov 2010
By Kali
I got this book on a whim. The title intrigued me, "Stuff White People Like", what was that all about? Well I soon found out and though it is very American you can very much relate it to any white middle class life all OVER the world. From the very first page I found myself laughing out loud. I couldn't help myself. Not only that I REALLY tried to feel guilty but I just couldn't because when all was said and done all Mr Lander was doing was showing us what was in front of our eyes, we just haven't realised it. Until now.

Diversity made me fall out of my wheelchair chuckling with mirth, so VERY true. And as for the page titled "having Black friends" well my friend had to practically resusitate me. I smiled when I read about Dogs, guilty as charged, I love dogs, I get that I suspect from my English (and white) mother, my Indian father has grown to tolerate us having dogs in our house but he isn't a fan the way we are. The "How White Are You?" at the end of the book sounds offensive, but actually it isn't. It makes a point that I think a lot of people don't get. Having read some of the other reviews I can see that a lot of people are offended by this book.

Would they be offended by a book called Stuff Black People Like? Somehow I doubt it. It would probably be looked at as some sort of seminal book on ethnicity that needed to be read from cover to cover and discussed in coffee shops, whilst contemplating a change of religion and looking at diversity as the new "way forward" but only if it means a change of menu.

Mr Lander you have opened a can of worms. I trust you will open another can and write another book, possibly titled, "More Stuff White People Like."
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17 of 19 people found the following review helpful
By russki
Moleskin Notebooks, Expensive Baby Buggies, Never Used Kitchen Aid Mixers, Yoga and Apple Computers. Middle Class consumers of these items get it in the neck in this fantastic book.
In a desperate bid to appear ecologically worldly wise and creatively individual, white upper middle class people all buy the exact same expensive stuff. It makes for a unsettling read as it lists all the stuff I love. I know the middle class are an easy target for satire but this book does it in a funny and thought provoking way.
Self congratulation, gentrification, white assimilation and division, and middle class guilt are all touched upon by the excellent choice of items.
Many of the reviews on the American web site claim this book is racist and devisive but they are really overeacting and miss the point (plus any book that can devide opinion and create debate is fine by me)
This is an American book so some of the brand names and companies will be unfamiliar but you can easily substitute English versions, plus everything is becoming Americanised anyway thanks to globalization.
For me this book punctures pomposity, piousness and elitism in a deadly accurate but ironically light hearted way. If you're looking for a present for the gently self loathing, irony loving person in your life, this is the book to buy (just make sure they read it on full view whilst drinking ultra expensive fair trade coffee in a Shoreditch coffee shop!)
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars Like being told the same joke 150 times 24 Nov 2011
Format:Paperback|Vine Customer Review of Free Product (What's this?)
Having read this book, I'm left somewhat confused as to who the intended audience is. Presumably, being one of the `smug white people' I should recognise and have a good hard laugh at how ridiculous/ smug/ uncool I am in that I like many of the same things that others do, and to a point that's what I did. It was quite amusing to be mocked for having gay friends or liking The Wire and there were some characteristics that it felt right to poke fun at.

However, the difficulty is that this material does not lend itself well to a book format. The content is heavily biased towards American culture and the constant repetition, which might have been amusing on a website (which is where the concept originated) comes across as boring when you read too much at once.

I'm sorry I wasted my money on what is at best a book for the smallest room.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Hilarious and painfully true 23 Jan 2012
No wonder this blog / book caused such a sensation. The people it describes are the very ones who think themselves the most unique, creative and original. Like hell they are - a quick walk around Stoke Newington and Hackney Village will expose to even the most casual observer how predictable they all are. The realisation is simultaneously crushing and reassuring.

My favourite entries:
* Black Music that Black People Don't Listen to Anymore
* Self Aware Hip Hop References
* Bad Memories of High School
* Hating Corporations
* Knowing What's Best for Poor People
* Making you feel bad about not going outside
* Gentrification

I saw Christian Lander give a talk about this at LSE a couple of years ago and he was very engaging. Brilliant stuff!

A few of the reviewers have mentioned that it is very American-centric. There is a British version of the website, which is very good too (with entries on The Guardian, misanthropy, Stewart Lee, etc):
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Entertaining, if flawed 8 Dec 2009
By J. P. Ellison VINE VOICE
Format:Paperback|Vine Customer Review of Free Product (What's this?)
Like the website before it, "Stuff White People White" is an amusingly written collection of all of the sterotypical things you might associate with your average, white-collar, white-faced middle-American. Some are very much on the mark (Expensive sandwiches, Apple products), some are a little too broad to fit the book (Dogs), and many are very american-centric (The Ivy League), but for the most part the book captures the essence of what it is to be white.

You can probably add this book to itself, as it's pretty much aimed at the kind of self-depricating, average white person who will snicker at thesmelves in a smug and self-aware way. Go ahead and add "Writing reviews on Amazon" to the book too, in fact.

It's not amazingly funny, and the version I received was entirely black and white (There are plenty of pictures), but it's not bad. Overall, it's overly american, overly pretentious, but not without it's merits.
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Most Recent Customer Reviews
5.0 out of 5 stars great gift
gave this to my mate as a joke and she loved it - some good laughs in it
came in perfect condition also, great gift idea
Published 1 month ago by Sekinat
5.0 out of 5 stars Really funny book!
It is a really funny book. You should search for the video from the author in case you have any questions about buying this book.
Some items hit too close to home!
Published 10 months ago by F. Vieira
5.0 out of 5 stars Great book!
Funny and insightful, although some parts of it are irrelevant to me as a non-American. Also, I realised that I am not 'white' enough for the amount of white parentage I have, must... Read more
Published 14 months ago by Naomi Anderson Whittaker
1.0 out of 5 stars Hate it!
I detest this book. I ordered it thinking it would be an amusing commentary on "white folk" (a bit like Kate Fox's wonderful book 'Watching the English' Watching the English: The... Read more
Published on 18 Dec 2010 by C. Robson
3.0 out of 5 stars Nearly there but not quite!!
My first fear when reading this book was it was a throw back to the 50's and this was going to be some horrible redneck racist handguide. Its not raceist.......... Read more
Published on 9 Nov 2010 by Jason Gaston
4.0 out of 5 stars Just the once
A very perceptive book in that you can really recognise the type of person being described here. It's very accurate in its portayal of a certain type of middle-class white person... Read more
Published on 24 Mar 2010 by Ponytail
2.0 out of 5 stars Pretty Smug. Not sure I get the Joke...
I'd heard a lot about Stuff White People Like, but I'm not really sure I get the joke. It's pretty smug and self-satisfied as far as humour goes. Read more
Published on 19 Mar 2010 by Particular Press
3.0 out of 5 stars Just stick to the blog
As you will know, this book is based on the author's blog. The book is as hit-and-miss as the blog, though with the blog, it was all free. Read more
Published on 14 Mar 2010 by Prashant Rao
4.0 out of 5 stars Enjoyable
Stuff White People Like (5 CD set) is enjoyable but probably best listened to in small doses.
Published on 9 Mar 2010 by Mr. Timothy P. P. Neill
1.0 out of 5 stars Naff
Banal observations...should be just called stuff people like. Deliberately framed contentiously and not very well written.
Published on 8 Mar 2010 by Current
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