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Here is the sentence:

Although a native son of Negro descent, Toomer was not physically recognized as black and could pass for white.

What I want to say is Toomer had the freedom to choose his racial identity when at social occasions. Which adverb should I add after the word "pass"? I think "willingly" is improper.

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    Freely? Easily? Breezily? Unnoticed? Often? Alternately? Cheerfully? Slyly? Commented Dec 22, 2023 at 16:01
  • easily sounds best to me but not sure this to "choose his racial identity". You can want to appear as something and have something completely different in your mind.
    – Lambie
    Commented Dec 22, 2023 at 18:19
  • @YosefBaskin None of those suggest the notion of active choice that the OP asks about.
    – Barmar
    Commented Dec 22, 2023 at 18:25
  • I think "pass" in itself might already suggest what you want; less deliberate would be "could be mistaken for white". The adverbs in the above comments then express how easy it is.
    – Barmar
    Commented Dec 22, 2023 at 18:27
  • Thank you all for your answers!!
    – Yuhang Ma
    Commented Dec 23, 2023 at 2:37

1 Answer 1

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Although a native son of Negro descent, Toomer was not physically recognized as black and could pass for white at will.

at will (phrase)

At whatever time or in whatever way one pleases.
Oxford Languages

If you can do something at will, you can do it any time you want.

He can cry at will.
Cambridge

As one wishes: as or when it pleases or suits oneself
M-W


In American are all extremes from the tens of thousands who are only sociologically Negroes and "pass for white" at will to the two million or so who seem miraculously without trace of racial admixture.
Samuel Schmalhousen; Behold America! (1931)

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  • Thanks for your answer! I'm taking your advice :)
    – Yuhang Ma
    Commented Dec 23, 2023 at 0:23

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