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'Racial Impostor Syndrome': Here Are Your Stories

We got more than 100 letters from our listeners about how y'all feel like fakes. Here are some of our favorites.
"Racial impostor syndrome" is definitely a thing for many people. We hear from biracial and multi-ethnic listeners who connect with feeling "fake" or inauthentic in some part of their racial or ethnic heritage. Source: Kristen Uroda for NPR

It's tricky to nail down exactly what makes someone feel like a "racial impostor." For one Code Switch follower, it's the feeling she gets from whipping out "broken but strangely colloquial Arabic" in front of other Middle Easterners.

For another — a white-passing, Native American woman — it's being treated like "just another tourist" when she shows up at powwows. And one woman described watching her white, black and Korean-American toddler bump along to the new Kendrick and wondering, "Is this allowed?"

In this week's podcast, we go deep into what we're calling Racial Impostor Syndrome — the feeling, the science and a giant festival this weekend in Los Angeles that's, in some ways, all about this.

Here's how we got started down this track. A couple months ago, listener Kristina Ogilvie wrote in to

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