Reflecting on local and national events over the past year, this summer I decided to revise and re-issue Rockfish. To a considerable degree, Rockfish is a book exploring how racial identities were formed and originally came into tension in Central Virginia, starting with the British settlement period. The basis of the book is merely history. I wanted to go back and make sure nothing obstructed its original purpose, which is as important now as it ever has been.
Race has meant different things at different times over the last several centuries. Race has never been a fixed concept. Definitions of race have varied from generation to generation for many reasons and we can assume that race, as a concept, will continue to evolve and vary in years to come. Ironically, the characters in Rockfish do not always care very much about race themselves; they are naturally more concerned with life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness—as most people are. But no Virginia community could escape the scars of slavery, civil war, Jim Crow, eugenics and segregation. Race was forced to matter; and people adapted.
For more on this new release, see my Rockfish page, which includes some added photos of Rockfish, then and now.
The new edition of Rockfish is available on amazon in kindle and print.