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Racial Justice Reading List

This reading list is a starting place to find resources that speak to racial justice, racial equity, and anti-racism.

The matter of black lives : writing from the New Yorker

Bringing together reporting, profiles, memoir and criticism from The New Yorker to present a bold and complex portrait of black life in America, told through stories of private triumphs and national tragedies, political vision, and artistic inspiration throughout history

The 1619 Project : a new origin story

"In late August 1619, a ship arrived in the British colony of Virginia bearing a cargo of twenty to thirty enslaved people from Africa. Their arrival led to the barbaric and unprecedented system of American chattel slavery that would last for the next 250 years. This is sometimes referred to as the country’s original sin, but it is more than that: It is the source of so much that still defines the United States. The New York Times Magazine’s...'1619 Project' issue reframed our understanding of American history by placing slavery and its continuing legacy at the center of our national narrative. This new book substantially expands on that work, weaving together eighteen essays that explore the legacy of slavery in present-day America with thirty-six poems and works of fiction that illuminate key moments of oppression, struggle, and resistance. The essays show how the inheritance of 1619 reaches into every part of contemporary American society, from politics, music, diet, traffic, and citizenship to capitalism, religion, and our democracy itself. This is a book that speaks directly to our current moment, contextualizing the systems of race and caste within which we operate today. It reveals long-glossed-over truths around our nation’s founding and construction—and the way that the legacy of slavery did not end with emancipation, but continues to shape contemporary American life."--book jacket

Stay woke : a people's guide to making all Black lives matter by Tehama Lopez Bunyasi

When #BlackLivesMatter went viral in 2013, it shed a light on the urgent, daily struggles of black Americans to combat racial injustice. The message resonated with millions across the country. Yet many of our political, social, and economic institutions are still embedded with racist policies and practices that devalue black lives. Stay Woke directly addresses these stark injustices and builds on the lessons of racial inequality and intersectionality the Black Lives Matter movement has challenged its fellow citizens to learn.

When they call you a terrorist : a story of Black Lives Matter and the power to change the world by Patrisse Khan-Cullors

This is the story of how the movement that started with a hashtag--#BlackLivesMatter--spread across the nation and then across the world and the journey that led one of its co-founders, Patrisse Khan-Cullors, to this moment. Patrisse Khan-Cullors grew up in an over-policed United States where incarceration of Black people runs rampant. Surrounded by police brutality, she gathered the tools and lessons that would lead her on to found one of the most powerful movements in the world. This, her necessary and timely story reminds us that protest in the interest of the most vulnerable comes from love: that love is the push to search for justice for those victimized by the powerful. With journal entries, photos and notes that show the formation of an activist from a very young age, this meaningful, empowering account of survival, strength, and resilience seeks to change the culture that declares innocent Black life expendable

Between the world and me : notes on the first 150 years in America by Ta-Nehisi Coates

In a profound work that pivots from the biggest questions about American history and ideals to the most intimate concerns of a father for his son, Ta-Nehisi Coates offers a powerful new framework for understanding our nation's history and current crisis

Citizen : an American lyric by Claudia Rankine

Claudia Rankine's bold new book recounts mounting racial aggressions in ongoing encounters in twenty-first-century daily life and in the media. Some of these encounters are slights, seeming slips of the tongue, and some are intentional offensives in the classroom, at the supermarket, at home, on the tennis court with Serena Williams and the soccer field with Zinedine Zidane, online, on TV-everywhere, all the time. The accumulative stresses come to bear on a person's ability to speak, perform, and stay alive. Our addressability is tied to the state of our belonging, Rankine argues, as are our assumptions and expectations of citizenship. In essay, image, and poetry, Citizen is a powerful testament to the individual and collective effects of racism in our contemporary, often named "post-race" society.

The fire next time by James Baldwin

At once a powerful evocation of James Baldwin's early life in Harlem and a disturbing examination of the consequences of racial injustice, the book is an intensely personal and provocative document from the iconic author of If Beale Street Could Talk and Go Tell It on the Mountain. It consists of two "letters," written on the occasion of the centennial of the Emancipation Proclamation, that exhort Americans, both black and white, to attack the terrible legacy of racism. Described by The New York Times Book Review as "sermon, ultimatum, confession, deposition, testament, and chronicle...all presented in searing, brilliant prose," The Fire Next Time stands as a classic of literature.

The fire this time : a new generation speaks about race

In this bestselling, widely lauded collection, Jesmyn Ward gathers our most original thinkers and writers to speak on contemporary racism and race, including Carol Anderson, Jericho Brown, Edwidge Danticat, Kevin Young, Claudia Rankine, and Honoree Jeffers. “An absolutely indispensable anthology” (Booklist, starred review), The Fire This Time shines a light on the darkest corners of our history, wrestles with our current predicament, and imagines a better future. Envisioned as a response to The Fire Next Time, James Baldwin’s groundbreaking 1963 essay collection, these contemporary writers reflect on the past, present, and future of race in America. We’ve made significant progress in the fifty-odd years since Baldwin’s essays were published, but America is a long and painful distance away from a “post-racial society”—a truth we must confront if we are to continue to work towards change. Baldwin’s “fire next time” is now upon us, and it needs to be talked about; The Fire This Time “seeks to place the shock of our own times into historical context and, most importantly, to move these times forward” (Vogue).

Freedom is a constant struggle : Ferguson, Palestine, and the foundations of a movement by Angela Y Davis

In these newly collected essays, interviews, and speeches, world-renowned activist and scholar Angela Y. Davis illuminates the connections between struggles against state violence and oppression throughout history and around the world. Reflecting on the importance of black feminism, intersectionality, and prison abolitionism for today's struggles, Davis discusses the legacies of previous liberation struggles, from the Black Freedom Movement to the South African anti-Apartheid movement. She highlights connections and analyzes today's struggles against state terror, from Ferguson to Palestine. Facing a world of outrageous injustice, Davis challenges us to imagine and build the movement for human liberation. And in doing so, she reminds us that "Freedom is a constant struggle."

The new Jim Crow : mass incarceration in the age of colorblindness by Michelle Alexander

As the United States celebrates the nation's "triumph over race" with the election of Barack Obama, the majority of young black men in major American cities are locked behind bars or have been labeled felons for life. Although Jim Crow laws have been wiped off the books, an astounding percentage of the African American community remains trapped in a subordinate status - much like their grandparents before them.

Pushout : the criminalization of black girls in schools by Monique W Morris

"Fifteen-year-old Diamond stopped going to school the day she was expelled for lashing out at peers who constantly harassed and teased her for something everyone on the staff had missed: she was being trafficked for sex. After months on the run, she was arrested and sent to a detention center for violating a court order to attend school. Black girls represent 16 percent of female students but almost half of all girls with a school-related arrest. The first trade book to tell these untold stories, Pushout exposes a world of confined potential and supports the growing movement to address the policies, practices, and cultural illiteracy that push countless students out of school and into unhealthy, unstable, and often unsafe futures. For four years Monique W. Morris, author of Black Stats, chronicled the experiences of black girls across the country whose intricate lives are misunderstood, highly judged-by teachers, administrators, and the justice system-and degraded by the very institutions charged with helping them flourish. Morris shows how, despite obstacles, stigmas, stereotypes, and despair, black girls still find ways to breathe remarkable dignity into their lives in classrooms, juvenile facilities, and beyond. "--

White rage : the unspoken truth of our racial divide by Carol (Carol Elaine) Anderson

From the Civil War to our combustible present, White Rage reframes our continuing conversation about race, chronicling the powerful forces opposed to black progress in America.

Invisible man, got the whole world watching : a young black man's education by Mychal Denzel Smith

An unflinching account of what it means to be a young black man in America today, and how the existing script for black manhood is being rewritten in one of the most fascinating periods of American history.

Uncomfortable conversations with a black man by Emmanuel Acho

"In Uncomfortable Conversations With a Black Man, Acho takes on all the questions, large and small, insensitive and taboo, many white Americans are afraid to ask--yet which all Americans need the answers to, now more than ever. With the same open-hearted generosity that has made his video series a phenomenon, Acho explains the vital core of such fraught concepts as white privilege, cultural appropriation, and "reverse racism." In his own words, he provides a space of compassion and understanding in a discussion that can lack both. He asks only for the reader's curiosity--but along the way, he will galvanize all of us to join the antiracist fight" -- Provided by publisher

Mediocre : the dangerous legacy of white male America by Ijeoma Oluo

"What happens to a country that tells generation after generation of white men that they deserve power? What happens when success is defined by status over women and people of color, instead of by actual accomplishments? Through the last 150 years of American history -- from the post-reconstruction South and the mythic stories of cowboys in the West, to the present-day controversy over NFL protests and the backlash against the rise of women in politics -- Ijeoma Oluo exposes the devastating consequences of white male supremacy on women, people of color, and white men themselves. Mediocre investigates the real costs of this phenomenon in order to imagine a new white male identity, one free from racism and sexism. As provocative as it is essential, this book will upend everything you thought you knew about American identity and offers a bold new vision of American greatness."--Amazon

Begin again : James Baldwin's America and its urgent lessons for our own by Eddie S Glaude

"James Baldwin grew disillusioned by the failure of the Civil Rights movement to force America to confront its lies about race. In the era of Trump, what can we learn from his struggle? "Not everything is lost. Responsibility cannot be lost, it can only be abdicated. If one refuses abdication, one begins again." --James Baldwin We live, according to Eddie S. Glaude, Jr., in the after times, when the promise of Black Lives Matter and the attempt to achieve a new America were challenged by the election of Donald Trump, a racist president whose victory represents yet another failure of America to face the lies it tells itself about race. We have been here before: For James Baldwin, the after times came in the wake of the Civil Rights movement, when a similar attempt to compel a national confrontation with the truth was answered with the murders of Medgar Evers, Malcolm X, and Martin Luther King, Jr. In these years, spanning from the publication of The Fire Next Time in 1963 to that of No Name in the Street in 1972, Baldwin was transformed into a more overtly political writer, a change that came at great professional and personal cost.

Black lives matter at school : an uprising for educational justice

An essential collection of essays, interviews, poems, resolutions, and more from educators, students, and activists who have been building the Black Lives Matter at School movement across the country, including a foreword by Black Lives Matter co-founder Opal Tometi

All the white friends I couldn't keep : hope--and hard pills to swallow--about fighting for black lives by Andre (Musician) Henry

"A leading voice for social justice reveals how he stopped arguing with white people who deny the ongoing legacy of racism-and offers a proven path forward for Black people and people of color based on the history of nonviolent struggle. When the rallyingcry "Black Lives Matter" was heard across the world in 2013, Andre Henry was one of the millions for whom the movement caused a political awakening and a rupture in some of his closest relationships with white people. As he began using his artistic giftsto share his experiences and perspective, Henry was aggrieved to discover that many white Americans-people he called friends and family-were more interested in debating whether racism existed or whether Henry was being polite enough in the way he used his voice. In this personal and thought-provoking book, Henry explores how the historical divides between Black people and non-Black people are expressed through our most mundane interactions, and why this struggle won't be resolved through civil discourse,diversity hires, interracial relationships, or education. What we need is a revolution, one that moves beyond symbolic progress to disrupt systems of racial violence and inequality in tangible, creative ways. Sharing stories from his own path to activism-from studying at seminary to becoming a student of nonviolent social change, from working as a praise leader to singing about social justice-and connecting those experiences to lessons from successful nonviolent struggles in America and around the world,Andre Henry calls on Black people and people of color to divest from whiteness and its false promises, trust what their lived experiences tell them, and practice hope as a discipline as they work for lasting change"--

Race against time : the politics of a darkening America by Keith Boykin

"As the upheaval of 2020 has made clear, America has utterly failed to atone for its original sin of racism. As America turns blacker and browner, the combination of fearful whites, angry and newly empowered blacks, and an inexcusable absence of leadership from Washington has created ideal conditions for conflict. There is a way out of our burning race crisis— but in order to prepare for the future, we first need to learn the lessons of the new age of reckoning. The current racial reckoning is the culmination of two decades of political miscalculations and ongoing organizing. In Race Against Time, national political commentator Keith Boykin offers a nuanced, in-depth account of political maneuverings from Washington to the streets, showing how Republicans, Democrats, and even populist movements have failed to address the dire realities that threaten the nation. Boykin details the effects of the emergence and persistence of the Black Lives Matter movement; Democrats' failed strategies of incrementalism during the Obama era and the legacies of Clinton-era policies; the minority, obstructionist policies of the Republicans; and the Bernie Sanders coalition's well-meaning but race-neutral economic reforms. With few exceptions, Boykin contends, we have refused to learn from the mistakes of these efforts, leaving us utterly unprepared for the future. Drawing on on-the-ground reporting and political analysis based on his years as a Washington insider, Boykin argues that the path forward is a race-based restructuring of the country where equality— not marginal improvement— is the goal. This is what the Black Lives Matter era has demanded of us, and it is the only just future for America"--

Nobody knows the trouble I've seen : the emotional lives of black women by Inger Burnett-Zeigler

A Northwestern University clinical psychologist challenges common cultural misconceptions to reveal the real-world systemic abuse, health traumas, and abandonment that disempower today's Black women and force them to hide behind masks of strength.

Nice racism : how progressive white people perpetuate racial harm by Robin J DiAngelo

"Nice Racism asserts that it is white progressives who are responsible for inflicting the most daily harm on people of color"--

How the word is passed : a reckoning with the history of slavery across America by Clint Smith

"'How the Word is Passed' is Clint Smith's revealing, contemporary portrait of America as a slave owning nation. Beginning in his own hometown of New Orleans, Smith leads the reader through an unforgettable tour of monuments and landmarks— those that are honest about the past and those that are not— that offer an intergenerational story of how slavery has been central in shaping our nations collective history, and ourselves." --

Race for profit : how banks and the real estate industry undermined black homeownership by Keeanga-Yamahtta Taylor

"Keeanga-Yamahtta Taylor offers a ... chronicle of the twilight of redlining and the introduction of conventional real estate practices into the Black urban market, uncovering a transition from racist exclusion to predatory inclusion. Widespread access tomortgages across the United States after World War II cemented homeownership as fundamental to conceptions of citizenship and belonging. African Americans had long faced racist obstacles to homeownership, but the social upheaval of the 1960s forced federal government reforms. In the 1970s, new housing policies encouraged African Americans to become homeowners, and these programs generated unprecedented real estate sales in Black urban communities. However, inclusion in the world of urban real estate wasfraught with new problems. As new housing policies came into effect, the real estate industry abandoned its aversion to African Americans, especially Black women, precisely because they were more likely to fail to keep up their home payments and slip into foreclosure"--

The whiteness of wealth : how the tax system impoverishes Black Americans--and how we can fix it by Dorothy A Brown

"A groundbreaking exposae of racism in the American taxation system from a law professor and expert on tax policy. Dorothy A. Brown became a tax lawyer to get away from race. As a young black girl growing up in the South Bronx, she'd seen how racism limited the lives of her family and neighbors. Her law school classes offered a refreshing contrast: Tax law was about numbers, and the only color that mattered was green. But when Brown sat down to prepare tax returns for her parents, she found something strange: James and Dottie Brown, a plumber and a nurse, seemed to be paying an unusually high percentage of their income in taxes. When Brown became a law professor, she set out to understand why. In The Whiteness of Wealth, Brown draws on decades of cross-disciplinary research to show that tax law isn't as color-blind as she'd once believed. She takes us into her adopted city of Atlanta, introducing us to families across the economic spectrum whose stories demonstrate how American tax law rewards the preferences and practices of white people while pushing black people further behind. From attending college to getting married to buying a home, black Americans find themselves at a financial disadvantage compared to their white peers. The results are an ever-increasing wealth gap and more black families shut out of the American dream. Solving the problem will require a wholesale rethinking of America's tax code. But it will also require both black and white Americans to make different choices. This urgent, actionable book points the way forward"--

A black women's history of the United States by Daina Ramey Berry

"A Black Women's History of the United States is a critical survey of black women's complicated legacy in America, as it takes into account their exploitation and victimization as well as their undeniable and substantial contributions to the country sinceits inception"--

The sum of us : what racism costs everyone and how we can prosper together by Heather C McGhee

"Heather C. McGhee's specialty is the American economy--and the mystery of why it so often fails the American public. As she dug into subject after subject, from the financial crisis to declining wages to collapsing public infrastructure, she found a common problem at the bottom of them all: racism--but not just in the obvious ways that hurt people of color. Racism has costs for white people, too. It's the common denominator in our most vexing public problems, even beyond our economy. It is at the core ofthe dysfunction of our democracy and even the spiritual and moral crises that grip us. Racism is a toxin in the American body and it weakens us all. But how did this happen? And is there a way out? To find the way, McGhee embarks on a deeply personal journey across the country from Mississippi to Maine, tallying up what we lose when we buy into the zero-sum paradigm--the idea that progress for some of us must come at the expense of others. Along the way, she collects the stories of white people who confide in her about losing their homes, their dreams and their shot at a better job to the toxic mix of American racism and greed. This is the story of how public goods in this country--from parks and pools to functioning schools--have become private luxuries; of how unions collapsed, wages stagnated, and inequality increased; and of how this country, unique among the world's advanced economies, has thwarted universal healthcare. It's why we fail to prevent environmental and public health crises that requirecollective action. But in unlikely places of worship and work, McGhee also finds proof of what she calls the Solidarity Dividend: gains that come when people come together across race, to the benefit of all involved"--

How to be an antiracist by Ibram X Kendi

Kendi weaves an electrifying combination of ethics, history, law, and science with his own personal story of awakening to antiracism. This is an essential work for anyone who wants to go beyond the awareness of racism to the next step: contributing to the formation of a just and equitable society

White fragility : why it's so hard for white people to talk about racism by Robin J DiAngelo

In this “vital, necessary, and beautiful book” (Michael Eric Dyson), antiracist educator Robin DiAngelo deftly illuminates the phenomenon of white fragility and “allows us to understand racism as a practice not restricted to ‘bad people’ (Claudia Rankine). Referring to the defensive moves that white people make when challenged racially, white fragility is characterized by emotions such as anger, fear, and guilt, and by behaviors including argumentation and silence. These behaviors, in turn, function to reinstate white racial equilibrium and prevent any meaningful cross-racial dialogue. In this in-depth exploration, DiAngelo examines how white fragility develops, how it protects racial inequality, and what we can do to engage more constructively.

Stamped from the beginning : the definitive history of racist ideas in America by Ibram X Kendi

Some Americans cling desperately to the myth that we are living in a post-racial society, that the election of the first Black president spelled the doom of racism. In fact, racist thought is alive and well in America--more sophisticated and more insidious than ever.

Caste : the origins of our discontents by Isabel Wilkerson

""As we go about our daily lives, caste is the wordless usher in a darkened theater, flashlight cast down in the aisles, guiding us to our assigned seats for a performance. The hierarchy of caste is not about feelings or morality. It is about power--which groups have it and which do not." In this brilliant book, Isabel Wilkerson gives us a masterful portrait of an unseen phenomenon in America as she explores, through an immersive, deeply researched narrative and stories about real people, how America today and throughout its history has been shaped by a hidden caste system, a rigid hierarchy of human rankings. Beyond race, class, or other factors, there is a powerful caste system that influences people's lives and behavior and the nation's fate. Linking the caste systems of America, India, and Nazi Germany, Wilkerson explores eight pillars that underlie caste systems across civilizations, including divine will, bloodlines, stigma, and more. Using riveting stories about people--including Martin Luther King, Jr., baseball's Satchel Paige, a single father and his toddler son, Wilkerson herself, and many others--she shows the ways that the insidious undertow of caste is experienced every day. She documents how the Nazis studied the racial systems in America to plan their out-cast of the Jews; she discusses why the cruel logic of caste requires that there be a bottom rung for those in the middle to measure themselves against; she writes about the surprising health costs of caste, in depression and life expectancy, and the effects of this hierarchy on our culture and politics. Finally, she points forward to ways America can move beyond the artificial and destructive separations of human divisions, toward hope in our common humanity. Beautifully written, original, and revealing, Caste: The Origins of Our Discontents is an eye-opening story of people and history, and a reexamination of what lies under the surface of ordinary lives and of America life today"--

So you want to talk about race by Ijeoma Oluo

"A current, constructive, and actionable exploration of today's racial landscape, offering straightforward clarity that readers of all races need to contribute to the dismantling of the racial divide. In So You Want to Talk About Race, Editor at Largeof The Establishment, Ijeoma Oluo offers a contemporary, accessible take on the racial landscape in America, addressing head-on such issues as privilege, police brutality, intersectionality, micro-aggressions, the Black Lives Matter movement, and the "N"word. Perfectly positioned to bridge the gap between people of color and white Americans struggling with race complexities, Oluo answers the questions readers don't dare ask, and explains the concepts that continue to elude everyday Americans. Oluo is anexceptional writer with a rare ability to be straightforward, funny, and effective in her coverage of sensitive, hyper-charged issues in America. Her messages are passionate but finely tuned, and crystalize ideas that would otherwise be vague by empowering them with aha-moment clarity. Her writing brings to mind voices like Ta-Nehisi Coates and Roxane Gay, and Jessica Valenti in Full Frontal Feminism, and a young Gloria Naylor, particularly in Naylor's seminal essay "The Meaning of a Word.""--

Me and white supremacy : combat racism, change the world, and become a good ancestor by Layla F Saad

"When Layla Saad began an Instagram challenge called #meandwhitesupremacy, she never predicted it would become a cultural movement. She encouraged people to own up and share their racist behaviors, big and small. She was looking for truth, and she got it... Thousands of people participated in the challenge, and over 80,000 people downloaded the supporting work Me and White Supremacy. Updated and expanded from the original edition, Me and White Supremacy teaches readers how to dismantle the privilege within themselves so that they can stop (often unconsciously) inflicting damage on people of color, and in turn, help other white people do better, too"--

They can't kill us all : Ferguson, Baltimore, and a new era in America's racial justice movement by Wesley Lowery

A behind-the-scenes account of the #blacklivesmatter movement shares insights into the young men and women behind it, citing the racially charged controversies that have motivated members and the economic, political, and personal histories that inform its purpose

Reclaiming our space : how black feminists are changing the world from the tweets to the streets by Feminista Jones

"45 years ago, Black American feminists convened as architects for a new revolution that thrives today, finding its home and building its strengths within Black women's online communities and digital spaces"--

Policing the Black man : arrest, prosecution, and imprisonment

"A comprehensive, readable analysis of the key issues of the Black Lives Matter movement, this thought-provoking and compelling anthology features essays by some of the nation's most influential and respected criminal justice experts and legal scholars. Policing the Black Man explores and critiques the many ways the criminal justice system impacts the lives of African American boys and men at every stage of the criminal process, from arrest through sentencing. Essays range from an explication of the historical roots of racism in the criminal justice system to an examination of modern-day police killings of unarmed black men. The contributors discuss and explain racial profiling, the power and discretion of police and prosecutors, the role of implicit bias, the racial impact of police and prosecutorial decisions, the disproportionate imprisonment of black men, the collateral consequences of mass incarceration, and the Supreme Court's failure to provide meaningful remedies for the injustices in the criminal justice system. Policing the Black Man is an enlightening must-read for anyone interested in the critical issues of race and justice in America."--Jacket

I'm still here : Black dignity in a world made for whiteness by Austin Channing Brown

The author's first encounter with a racialized America came at age seven, when her parents told her they named her Austin to deceive future employers into thinking she was a white man. She grew up in majority-white schools, organizations, and churches, and has spent her life navigating America's racial divide as a writer, a speaker, and an expert helping organizations practice genuine inclusion. While so many institutions claim to value diversity in their mission statements, many fall short of matching actions to words. Brown highlights how white middle-class evangelicalism has participated in the rise of racial hostility, and encourages the reader to confront apathy and recognize God's ongoing work in the world.

The color of law : a forgotten history of how our government segregated America by Richard Rothstein

Widely heralded as a “masterful” (Washington Post) and “essential” (Slate) history of the modern American metropolis, Richard Rothstein’s The Color of Law offers “the most forceful argument ever published on how federal, state, and local governments gave rise to and reinforced neighborhood segregation” (William Julius Wilson). Exploding the myth of de facto segregation arising from private prejudice or the unintended consequences of economic forces, Rothstein describes how the American government systematically imposed residential segregation: with undisguised racial zoning; public housing that purposefully segregated previously mixed communities; subsidies for builders to create whites-only suburbs; tax exemptions for institutions that enforced segregation; and support for violent resistance to African Americans in white neighborhoods.

Why I'm no longer talking to white people about race by Reni Eddo-Lodge

In 2014, award-winning journalist Reni Eddo-Lodge wrote on her blog about her frustration with the way that discussions of race and racism in Britain were being led by those who weren't affected by it. Her words hit a nerve. The post went viral and comments flooded in from others desperate to speak up about their own experiences. Galvanised, she decided to dig into the source of these feelings. Exploring issues from eradicated black history to the inextricable link between class and race, Reni Eddo-Lodgehas written a searing, illuminating, absolutely necessary examination of what it is to be a person of colour in Britain today --

This book is anti-racist : 20 lessons on how to wake up, take action, and do the work by Tiffany Jewell

Discusses social identities, describes the history of racism and the resistance against it, and offers guidance on becoming an anti-racist voice to move the world toward equality.

The half has never been told : slavery and the making of american capitalism by Edward E Baptist

Historian Edward Baptist reveals how the expansion of slavery in the first eight decades after American independence drove the evolution and modernization of the United States.

What doesn't kill you makes you blacker : a memoir in essays by Damon Young

The co-founder of VerySmartBrothas.com presents a provocative and humorous memoir-in-essays that explores the direct impact of racism on his life, the shifting definition of black male identity, and the ongoing realities of white supremacy

Locking up our own : crime and punishment in black America by James Forman

"An original and consequential argument about race, crime, and the law. Today, Americans are debating our criminal justice system with new urgency. Mass incarceration and aggressive police tactics -- and their impact on people of color -- are feeding outrage and a consensus that something must be done. But what if we only know half the story? In Locking Up Our Own, the Yale legal scholar and former public defender James Forman Jr. weighs the tragic role that some African Americans themselves played in escalating the war on crime. As Forman shows, the first substantial cohort of black mayors, judges, and police chiefs took office around the country amid a surge in crime. Many came to believe that tough measures -- such as stringent drug and gun laws and "pretext traffic stops" in poor African American neighborhoods -- were needed to secure a stable future for black communities. Some politicians and activists saw criminals as a "cancer" that had to be cut away from the rest of black America. Others supported harsh measures more reluctantly, believing they had no other choice in the face of a public safety emergency. Drawing on his experience as a public defender and focusing on Washington, D.C., Forman writes with compassion for individuals trapped in terrible dilemmas -- from the young men and women he defended to officials struggling to cope with an impossible situation. The result is an original view of our justice system as well as a moving portrait of the human beings caught in its coils. "--

You can't touch my hair and other things I still have to explain by Phoebe Robinson

Being a black woman in America means contending with old prejudices and fresh absurdities every day. Comedian Phoebe Robinson has experienced her fair share over the years: She's been unceremoniously relegated to the role of "the black friend", as if she is somehow the authority on all things racial; she's been questioned about her love of U2 and Billy Joel ("isn't that...white people music?"); she's been called "uppity" for having an opinion in the workplace; she's been followed around stores by security guards; and yes, people do ask her whether they can touch her hair all. The. Time. Now she's ready to take these topics to audio - and she's going to make you laugh as she's doing it.
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