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Anti-Racism Resources: Home
What is racism?
Racism is prejudice + power; anyone of any race can have/exhibit racial prejudice, but in North America, white people have the institutional power, therefore racism is a systematized discrimination or antagonism directed against people of color based on the belief that whiteness is superior. It is insidious, systemic, devastating, and integral to understanding both the history of the United States and the everyday experiences of those of us living in this country.
What does it mean to be anti-racist?
Anti-racism is made up of strategies, theories, actions, and practices that challenge and counter racism, inequalities, prejudices, and discrimination based on race. You do not have to dismantle your own internalized racism in order to be anti-racist, though that is part of the work.
"No one becomes “not racist,” despite a tendency by Americans to identify themselves that way. We can only strive to be “anti-racist” on a daily basis, to continually rededicate ourselves to the lifelong task of overcoming our country’s racist heritage.
We learn early the racist notion that white people have more because they are more; that people of color have less because they are less. I had internalized this worldview by my high school graduation, seeing myself and my race as less than other people and blaming other blacks for racial inequities.
To build a nation of equal opportunity for everyone, we need to dismantle this spurious legacy of our common upbringing."
The journey towards anti-racism does not, and should not, feel like homework. Enjoy fiction from Black authors, watch movies from Black creators/directors/actors. Some of these resources fall into a more educational vein and some do not. Choose the resources right for where you are now.
Below are just some of the resources available as you begin or continue your journey in learning about anti-racism. The ebook and print book sections are limited to titles that the Transy Library has access to; however, we are committed to expanding this collection as we're able. This guide will be updated as more resources are identified and become available to us. If you have suggestions on additions, please email firstname.lastname@example.org
Tasha Ryals put together a detailed anti-racism resource guide that includes suggested pre-reading, how to start your journey, and the several different studies and subjects that touch upon the human experience of BIPOC. If you want a detailed look at the literature, videos, and podcasts available, this is a great guide.
This document is intended to serve as a resource to white people and parents to deepen our anti-racism work. If you haven’t engaged in anti-racism work in the past, start now. Feel free to circulate this document on social media and with your friends, family, and colleagues.
The reading list below is composed of...a combination of classics, relatively obscure works and a few of recent vintage. Think of it as a stepladder to antiracism, each step addressing a different stage of the journey toward destroying racism’s insidious hold on all of us. (The books on this list that the library owns appear in the eBooks or Print Books tab)
This website is a web-based version of a workbook designed originally to support the Dismantling Racism workshop offered by Dismantling Racism Works. Workbooks and resources have been expanded and are freely available on their website.
The Equal Justice Initiative is committed to ending mass incarceration and excessive punishment in the United States, to challenging racial and economic injustice, and to protecting basic human rights for the most vulnerable people in American society.
Institutional racism—a term coined by Stokely Carmichael (later known as Kwame Ture) and Charles V. Hamilton in their 1967 book Black Power: The Politics of Liberation in America—is what connects George Floyd and Ahmaud Arbery with Philando Castile, Eric Garner, Emmett Till, and the thousands of other people of color who have been killed because they were black in America. This context seems vital for discussions both inside and outside the classroom. The following articles, published over the course of JSTOR Daily’s five years try to provide such context. We will be updating this page with more stories and are working to acquire a reading list about institutionalized racism in the near future.
The lists of written resources (books, articles) and videos and films provided here come from a number of organizations. Please use them to learn more about racial equity concepts, issues and strategies. They include materials that can be accessed for free, plus materials to purchase. Please observe all copyright laws and restrictions indicated by the authors. As a matter of equity, please be sure to cite sources.
The definition of racism offered here is grounded in Critical Race Theory a movement started in the 1970s by activists and scholars committed to the study and transformation of traditional relationships of race to racism and power.
In the words of University of Southern Carolina library, Dr. Nicole A. Cook, "This project emerged out of the pain and frustration associated with the back-to-back deaths of #GeorgeFloyd #BreonnaTaylor and #AhmaudArbery in 2020. We must do better as a global society! #BlackLivesMatter. This list is not a panacea. This compilation of resources is JUST A STARTING POINT to encourage people to do their own work and have their own hard conversations.
Asian Americans Advancing Justice advocates for an America in which all Americans can benefit equally from, and contribute to, the American dream. Their mission is to advance the civil and human rights for Asian Americans and to build and promote a fair and equitable society for all.
In response to the alarming escalation in xenophobia and bigotry resulting from the COVID-19 pandemic, the Asian Pacific Planning and Policy Council (A3PCON), Chinese for Affirmative Action (CAA), and the Asian American Studies Department of San Francisco State University launched the Stop AAPI Hate reporting center on March 19, 2020. The center tracks and responds to incidents of hate, violence, harassment, discrimination, shunning, and child bullying against Asian Americans and Pacific Islanders in the United States.
"In this volatile moment, racial justice advocates face an urgent mandate to inspire visions of a future America based on inclusion and interdependence, rather than on division and domination. This future requires building mass consciousness to see race not as the classification of human difference, but as a mythology created in service to broadly damaging systems of plunder and control. It requires engaging in rigorous political imagination and struggle to forge new ways of seeing our humanity in one another across race and national borders. Building this consciousness is as much a cultural project as it is a political one. As Brazilian educator Paulo Freire reminds us, “hope needs practice in order to become historical concreteness.” It is in this spirit that we offer this toolkit, as a popular education resource to grow the ranks of those who can turn hope into reality."
To access the eBooks, you need to be logged in with your Transy credentials, or using campus wifi. To access print books, please email email@example.com to arrange pick-up.
In this charged collection of fifteen essays and speeches, Lorde takes on sexism, racism, ageism, homophobia, and class, and propounds social difference as a vehicle for action and change. Her prose is incisive, unflinching, and lyrical, reflecting struggle but ultimately offering messages of hope. This commemorative edition includes a new foreword by Lorde scholar and poet Cheryl Clarke, who celebrates the ways in which Lorde's philosophies resonate more than twenty years after they were first published. These landmark writings are, in Lorde's own words, a call to "never close our eyes to the terror, to the chaos which is Black which is creative which is female which is dark which is rejected which is messy which is."
These essays, by one of America's leading black intellectuals, face squarely the problems of teachers who do not want to teach, of students who do not want to learn, of racism and sexism in the classroom, and of the gift of freedom that is, for Hooks, the teacher's most important goal.
The classic, bestselling book on the psychology of racism-now fully revised and updated Walk into any racially mixed high school and you will see Black, White, and Latino youth clustered in their own groups. Is this self-segregation a problem to address or a coping strategy? Beverly Daniel Tatum, a renowned authority on the psychology of racism, argues that straight talk about our racial identities is essential if we are serious about enabling communication across racial and ethnic divides. These topics have only become more urgent as the national conversation about race is increasingly acrimonious. This fully revised edition is essential reading for anyone seeking to understand the dynamics of race in America. "An unusually sensitive work about the racial barriers that still divide us in so many areas of life."-Jonathan Kozol
In this ambitious work, first published in 1983, Cedric Robinson demonstrates that efforts to understand black people's history of resistance solely through the prism of Marxist theory are incomplete and inaccurate. Marxist analyses tend to presuppose European models of history and experience that downplay the significance of black people and black communities as agents of change and resistance. Black radicalism must be linked to the traditions of Africa and the unique experiences of blacks on western continents, Robinson argues, and any analyses of African American history need to acknowledge this.
Are antisemitism and white supremacy manifestations of a general phenomenon? Why didn't racism appear in Europe before the fourteenth century, and why did it flourish as never before in the eighteenth and nineteenth centuries? Why did the twentieth century see institutionalized racism in its most extreme forms? Why are egalitarian societies particularly susceptible to virulent racism? What do apartheid South Africa, Nazi Germany, and the American South under Jim Crow have in common? How did the Holocaust advance civil rights in the United States?
A People's History of the United States by Howard Zinn
Call Number: E178 .Z75 2001
Publication Date: 2001-08-21
Known for its lively, clear prose as well as its scholarly research, A People's History of the United States is the only volume to tell America's story from the point of view of -- and in the words of -- America's women, factory workers, African Americans, Native Americans, working poor, and immigrant laborers. Covering Christopher Columbus's arrival through President Clinton's first term, A People's History of the United States features insightful analysis of the most important events in our history. Revised, updated, and featuring a new afterword by the author, this is "a brilliant and moving history of the American people" (Library Journal).
How to Be an Antiracist by Ibram X. Kendi
Call Number: E184.A1 K344 2019
Publication Date: 2019-08-13
Antiracism is a transformative concept that reorients and reenergizes the conversation about racism--and, even more fundamentally, points us toward liberating new ways of thinking about ourselves and each other. At it's core, racism is a powerful system that creates false hierarchies of human value; its warped logic extends beyond race, from the way we regard people of different ethnicities or skin colors to the way we treat people of different sexes, gender identities, and body types. Racism intersects with class and culture and geography and even changes the way we see and value ourselves.
So You Want to Talk about Race by Ijeoma Oluo
Call Number: E184.A1 O454 2018
In this New York Times bestseller, Ijeoma Oluo offers a hard-hitting but user-friendly examination of race in America Widespread reporting on aspects of white supremacy--from police brutality to the mass incarceration of Black Americans--has put a media spotlight on racism in our society. Still, it is a difficult subject to talk about. How do you tell your roommate her jokes are racist? Why did your sister-in-law take umbrage when you asked to touch her hair--and how do you make it right? How do you explain white privilege to your white, privileged friend?
Dying of Whiteness by Jonathan M. Metzl
Call Number: RA563.M56 M489 2019
Publication Date: 2019-03-05
A physician reveals how right-wing backlash policies have mortal consequences -- even for the white voters they promise to help Named one of the most anticipated books of 2019 by Esquire and the Boston Globe In the era of Donald Trump, many lower- and middle-class white Americans are drawn to politicians who pledge to make their lives great again. But as Dying of Whiteness shows, the policies that result actually place white Americans at ever-greater risk of sickness and death.
This comprehensive text thoroughly reviews the theories and history of racism, the sociology of and the psychology of racism, intergroup relations and intergroup conflict, and how racism is manifested institutionally, between groups, and between people, providing a unique view of the connections between these multiple perspectives.
Chronicling the emergence of deeply embedded notions of black people as a dangerous race of criminals by explicit contrast to working-class whites and European immigrants, this fascinating book reveals the influence such ideas have had on urban development and social policies.
The Autobiography of Malcolm X by Malcolm X
Call Number: E185.97 .L5 A3 1965 (Project One)
Publication Date: 1987-10-12
In the searing pages of this classic autobiography, originally published in 1964, Malcolm X, the Muslim leader, firebrand, and anti-integrationist, tells the extraordinary story of his life and the growth of the Black Muslim movement. His fascinating perspective on the lies and limitations of the American Dream, and the inherent racism in a society that denies its nonwhite citizens the opportunity to dream, gives extraordinary insight into the most urgent issues of our own time. The Autobiography of Malcolm X stands as the definitive statement of a movement and a man whose work was never completed but whose message is timeless. It is essential reading for anyone who wants to understand America.
Well-Read Black Girl by Glory Edim
Remember that moment when you first encountered a character who seemed to be written just for you? That feeling of belonging remains with readers the rest of their lives--but not everyone regularly sees themselves in the pages of a book. In this timely anthology, Glory Edim brings together original essays by some of our best black women writers to shine a light on how important it is that we all--regardless of gender, race, religion, or ability--have the opportunity to find ourselves in literature. Contributors include Jesmyn Ward (Sing, Unburied, Sing), Lynn Nottage (Sweat), Jacqueline Woodson (Another Brooklyn), Gabourey Sidibe (This Is Just My Face), Morgan Jerkins (This Will Be My Undoing), Tayari Jones (An American Marriage), Rebecca Walker (Black, White and Jewish), and Barbara Smith (Home Girls: A Black Feminist Anthology) [Purchase through Indiebound]
This book directly challenges the notion that the election of Barack Obama signals a new era of colorblindness. With dazzling candor, legal scholar Michelle Alexander argues that'we have not ended racial caste in America; we have merely redesigned it.'By targeting black men through the War on Drugs and decimating communities of color, the U.S. criminal justice system functions as a contemporary system of racial control—relegating millions to a permanent second-class status—even as it formally adheres to the principle of colorblindness.
The book traces the legacy of racism across three continents, from its origins to the present day, bringing a sophisticated neo-Marxist analysis to bear on a muti-faceted and endemic topic.Mike Cole takes us through the racial histories of the United Kingdom, the United States and Australia. In the UK, he focuses on the effects of colonialism, anti-Gipsy, Roma and Traveller and xeno-racism. Turning to the United States, he charts the legacies of indigenous genocide and slavery, as well as exploring anti-Latina/o racism. Finally, in Australia, he interrogates the idea of 'Terra Nullius' and its ongoing impact on the indigenous peoples, as well as racism experienced by South Sea Islanders and Asians.International forms are also covered, including Islamophobia, antisemitism and anti-Irish racism.
West Indian immigrants to the United States fare better than native-born African Americans on a wide array of economic measures, including labor force participation, earnings, and occupational prestige. Some researchers argue that the root of this difference lies in differing cultural attitudes toward work, while others maintain that white Americans favor West Indian blacks over African Americans, giving them an edge in the workforce. Still others hold that West Indians who emigrate to this country are more ambitious and talented than those they left behind. In West Indian Immigrants, sociologist Suzanne Model subjects these theories to close historical and empirical scrutiny to unravel the mystery of West Indian success. West Indian Immigrants draws on four decades
Between the World and Me by Ta-Nehisi Coates
Call Number: E185.615 .C6335 2015
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. Americans have built an empire on the idea of "race," a falsehood that damages us all but falls most heavily on the bodies of black women and men--bodies exploited through slavery and segregation, and, today, threatened, locked up, and murdered out of all proportion. What is it like to inhabit a black body and find a way to live within it? And how can we all honestly reckon with this fraught history and free ourselves from its burden? Between the World and Me is Ta-Nehisi Coates's attempt to answer these questions in a letter to his adolescent son. Coates shares with his son--and readers--the story of his awakening to the truth about his place in the world through a series of revelatory experiences, from Howard University to Civil War battlefields, from the South Side of Chicago to Paris, from his childhood home to the living rooms of mothers whose children's lives were taken as American plunder. Beautifully woven from personal narrative, reimagined history, and fresh, emotionally charged reportage, Between the World and Me clearly illuminates the past, bracingly confronts our present, and offers a transcendent vision for a way forward.
Sixteen-year-old Starr Carter moves between two worlds: the poor neighborhood where she lives and the fancy suburban prep school she attends. The uneasy balance between these worlds is shattered when Starr witnesses the fatal shooting of her childhood best friend Khalil at the hands of a police officer. Khalil was unarmed. Soon afterward, his death is a national headline. Some are calling him a thug, maybe even a drug dealer and a gangbanger. Protesters are taking to the streets in Khalil's name. Some cops and the local drug lord try to intimidate Starr and her family. What everyone wants to know is: what really went down that night? And the only person alive who can answer that is Starr. But what Starr does--or does not--say could upend her community. It could also endanger her life.
Queenie by Candice Carty-Williams
Bridget Jones's Diary meets Americanah in this disarmingly honest, boldly political, and truly inclusive novel that will speak to anyone who has gone looking for love and found something very different in its place. Queenie Jenkins is a twenty-five-year-old Jamaican British woman living in London, straddling two cultures and slotting neatly into neither. She works at a national newspaper, where she's constantly forced to compare herself to her white middle class peers. After a messy break up from her long-term white boyfriend, Queenie seeks comfort in all the wrong places...including several hazardous men who do a good job of occupying brain space and a bad job of affirming self-worth. As Queenie careens from one questionable decision to another, she finds herself wondering, "What are you doing? Why are you doing it? Who do you want to be?"--all of the questions today's woman must face in a world trying to answer them for her. [Purchase through Indiebound]
The Underground Railroad by Colson Whitehead
Call Number: PS3573.H4768 U53 2016
Publication Date: 2016-08-02
Cora is a slave on a cotton plantation in Georgia. Life is hell for all the slaves, but especially bad for Cora; an outcast even among her fellow Africans, she is coming into womanhood--where even greater pain awaits. When Caesar, a recent arrival from Virginia, tells her about the Underground Railroad, they decide to take a terrifying risk and escape. Matters do not go as planned--Cora kills a young white boy who tries to capture her. Though they manage to find a station and head north, they are being hunted.
Gingerbread by Helen Oyeyemi
Call Number: PR6115.Y49 G56 2019
Perdita Lee may appear to be your average British schoolgirl; Harriet Lee may seem just a working mother trying to penetrate the school social hierarchy; but there are signs that they might not be as normal as they think they are. For one thing, they share a gold-painted, seventh-floor walk-up apartment with some surprisingly verbal vegetation. And then there's the gingerbread they make. Londoners may find themselves able to take or leave it, but it's very popular in Druhástrana, the far-away (or, according to many sources, non-existent) land of Harriet Lee's early youth. The world's truest lover of the Lee family gingerbread, however, is Harriet's charismatic childhood friend Gretel Kercheval --a figure who seems to have had a hand in everything (good or bad) that has happened to Harriet since they met. Decades later, when teenaged Perdita sets out to find her mother's long-lost friend, it prompts a new telling of Harriet's story.
Salvage the Bones by Jesmyn Ward
Call Number: PS3623.A7323 S36 2011
A hurricane is building over the Gulf of Mexico, threatening the coastal town of Bois Sauvage, Mississippi, and Esch's father is growing concerned. A hard drinker, largely absent, he doesn't show concern for much else. Esch and her three brothers are stocking food, but there isn't much to save. Lately, Esch can't keep down what food she gets; she's fourteen and pregnant. Her brother Skeetah is sneaking scraps for his prized pitbull's new litter, dying one by one in the dirt. Meanwhile, brothers Randall and Junior try to stake their claim in a family long on child's play and short on parenting.
Black Leopard, Red Wolf by Marlon James
In the stunning first novel in Marlon James's Dark Star trilogy, myth, fantasy, and history come together to explore what happens when a mercenary is hired to find a missing child. Tracker is known far and wide for his skills as a hunter: "He has a nose," people say. Engaged to track down a mysterious boy who disappeared three years earlier, Tracker breaks his own rule of always working alone when he finds himself part of a group that comes together to search for the boy. The band is a hodgepodge, full of unusual characters with secrets of their own, including a shape-shifting man-animal known as Leopard. As Tracker follows the boy's scent--from one ancient city to another; into dense forests and across deep rivers--he and the band are set upon by creatures intent on destroying them. As he struggles to survive, Tracker starts to wonder: Who, really, is this boy? Why has he been missing for so long? Why do so many people want to keep Tracker from finding him? And perhaps the most important questions of all: Who is telling the truth, and who is lying? [Purchase through Indiebound]
Three-time Hugo Award winner and NYT bestselling author N. K. Jemisin challenges and delights readers with thought-provoking narratives of destruction, rebirth, and redemption that sharply examine modern society in her first collection of short fiction, which includes never-before-seen stories.
The Water Dancer by Ta-Nehisi Coates
Call Number: PS3603.O17 W38 2019
Publication Date: 2019-09-24
Young Hiram Walker was born into bondage. When his mother was sold away, Hiram was robbed of all memory of her--but was gifted with a mysterious power. Years later, when Hiram almost drowns in a river, that same power saves his life. This brush with death births an urgency in Hiram and a daring scheme: to escape from the only home he's ever known. So begins an unexpected journey that takes Hiram from the corrupt grandeur of Virginia's proud plantations to desperate guerrilla cells in the wilderness, from the coffin of the Deep South to dangerously idealistic movements in the North. Even as he's enlisted in the underground war between slavers and the enslaved, Hiram's resolve to rescue the family he left behind endures.
Masterplots II: African American Literature offers essays on individual titles by great novelists, playwrights, memoirists, historians, and critics as well as the bodies of work of major poets, short-story writers, essayists, and orators. Students, librarians, and teachers can explore the rich literary canon of African American writings, from colonial America to the twenty-first century.
On Beauty by Zadie Smith
Call Number: PR6069.M59 O5 2006b
Publication Date: 2006-08-29
On Beauty is the story of an interracial family living in the university town of Wellington, Massachusetts, whose misadventures in the culture wars--on both sides of the Atlantic--serve to skewer everything from family life to political correctness to the combustive collision between the personal and the political. Full of dead-on wit and relentlessly funny, this tour de force confirms Zadie Smith's reputation as a major literary talent.
In order to access some of these resources, you may need to be logged into your Transy account, or using campus wifi
The article presents a speech by Seattle-based writer and speaker Ijeoma Oluo, in acceptance of her Humanist Feminist Award, delivered at the American Humanist Association's (AHA) annual conference in Las Vegas, Nevada on May 19, 2018. Topics including feminism, social justice, and economic issues, are discussed.
The 1619 Project is an ongoing initiative from The New York Times Magazine that began in August 2019, the 400th anniversary of the beginning of American slavery. It aims to reframe the country’s history by placing the consequences of slavery and the contributions of black Americans at the very center of our national narrative.
Two hundred fifty years of slavery. Ninety years of Jim Crow. Sixty years of separate but equal. Thirty-five years of racist housing policy. Until we reckon with our compounding moral debts, America will never be whole.
The U.S. imprisons more people than any other country in the world, and a third of U.S. prisoners are black. In this infuriating documentary, director Ava DuVernay argues that mass incarceration, Jim Crow and slavery are "the three major racialized systems of control adopted in the United States to date." [Available from Netflix]
In this two-part series, Henry Louis Gates, Jr. chronicles the last 50 years of black history through a personal lens. Released days after the 2016 election, some themes of the documentary took on a deeper meaning amid Donald Trump's win. "Think of the civil rights movement to the present as a second Reconstruction — a 50-year Reconstruction — that ended last night," Gates said in an interview with Salon. [Available from PBS]
Daughters of the Dust is a 1991 independent film written, directed and produced by Julie Dash and is the first feature film directed by an African-American woman distributed theatrically in the United States. Set in 1902, it tells the story of three generations of Gullah (also known as Geechee) women in the Peazant family on Saint Helena Island as they prepare to migrate to the North on the mainland.
1973 experimental horror film written and directed by Bill Gunn and starring Marlene Clark and Duane Jones. The film follows the exploits of anthropologist Dr. Hess Green (Jones), who becomes a vampire after his intelligent but unstable assistant (Gunn) stabs him with an ancient cursed dagger. Green falls in love with his assistant's widow, Ganja (Clark), who learns Green's dark secret. [Available from Amazon or Sling with subscription]
Get Out is a 2017 American horror film written and directed by Jordan Peele in his directorial debut. Get Out follows Chris Washington (Kaluuya), a young African-American man who uncovers a disturbing secret when he meets the family of his Caucasian girlfriend, Rose Armitage (Williams).
Aspiring actor and hot-dog stand employee Bobby Taylor (Robert Townsend) catches the ire of his grandmother (Helen Martin) for auditioning for a role in the regrettably titled exploitation film "Jivetime Jimmy's Revenge." When Tinseltown Studios casts Taylor in the title role, he has a series of conflicted dreams satirizing African-American stereotypes in Hollywood, and must reconcile his career goals with his desire to remain a positive role model for his little brother (Craigus R. Johnson).
Narrated by the words of James Baldwin with the voice of Samuel L. Jackson, I Am Not Your Negro connects the Civil Rights Movement to Black Lives Matter. Although Baldwin died nearly 30 years before the film's release, his observations about racial conflict are as incisive today as they were when he made them. [Available from Amazon Prime]
LA 92 is about the Los Angeles riots that occurred in response to the police beating of Rodney King. The film is entirely comprised of archival footage — no talking heads needed. It's chilling to watch the unrest of nearly 30 years ago, as young people still take to the streets and shout, "No justice, no peace." [Available from Netflix]
Love & Basketball is a 2000 American romantic drama film starring Sanaa Lathan and Omar Epps. The film tells the story of Quincy McCall (Epps) and Monica Wright (Lathan), two next-door neighbors in Los Angeles, California who are pursuing their basketball careers before eventually falling for each other.
Over 60 years after Brown v. Board of Education, American schools are still segregated. Teach Us All explains why that is — school choice, residential segregation, biased admissions processes — and talks to advocates working for change. Interspersing interviews from two Little Rock Nine members, the documentary asks how far we've really come. [Available from Netflix]
The Watermelon Woman is a 1996 American romantic comedy-drama film written, directed, and edited by Cheryl Dunye. It stars Dunye as Cheryl, young black lesbian working a day job in a video store while trying to make a film about a black actress from the 1930s known for playing the stereotypical "mammy" roles relegated to black actresses during the period. It was the first feature film directed by a black lesbian and is considered a landmark in New Queer Cinema. [Available to watch on Amazon or Sling with subscription]
The 2014 killing of 18-year-old Michael Brown by police in Ferguson, Mo. was one of the deaths that sparked the Black Lives Matter movement. Frustrated by media coverage of unrest in Ferguson, co-directors Sabaah Folayan and Damon Davis documented how locals felt about police in riot gear filling their neighborhoods with tear gas. As one resident says, "They don't tell you the fact that the police showed up to a peaceful candlelight vigil...and boxed them in, and forced them onto a QuikTrip lot." [Available from Hulu]
What's CODE SWITCH? It's the fearless conversations about race that you've been waiting for! Hosted by journalists of color, our podcast tackles the subject of race head-on. We explore how it impacts every part of society — from politics and pop culture to history, sports and everything in between. This podcast makes ALL OF US part of the conversation — because we're all part of the story.
An audio documentary about the aftermath of Hurricane Katrina, Floodlines is told from the perspective of four New Orleanians still living with the consequences of governmental neglect. As COVID-19 disproportionately infects and kills Americans of color, the story feels especially relevant. "As a person of color, you always have it in the back of your mind that the government really doesn't care about you," said self-described Katrina overcomer Alice Craft-Kerney. (description from NPR)
Hosted by Kimberlé Crenshaw, a leading critical race theorist who coined the term "intersectionality," this podcast brings the academic term to life. Each episode brings together lively political organizers, journalists and writers. This recent episode on COVID-19 in prisons and other areas of confinement is a must-listen.
Every week at Throughline, our pals Rund Abdelfatah and Ramtin Arablouei "go back in time to understand the present." To understand the history of systemic racism in America, specific recommended episodes are: "American Police," "Mass Incarceration", and "Milliken v. Bradley."
Kenya Barris' "Black-ish" is a more straightforward, explanatory series about race that follows an upper-middle-class black family living in a predominately white neighborhood navigating microaggressions from fellow neighbors, colleagues and friends. [Available from Hulu]
This Netflix series, based on Justin Simien's movie of the same name, follows a group of black students at a predominately white university. One student, Samantha White (Logan Browning), starts a podcast directed at white students. The series explores colorism within the black community, class and activism, among other themes. [Available from Netflix]
While the entire series addresses race, two episodes can be recommended specifically: "Honeymoon in LA" (Parts 1 & 2). Whitley (Jasmine Guy) and Dwayne (Kadeem Hardison) go on their honeymoon during the Los Angeles riots in 1992 and the series shows how they experience those events in a fictional way. This "Cosby Show" spinoff follows Denise Huxtable (Lisa Bonet) as she attends a historically black university. [Available from Amazon]
The Marvel TV series stars Mike Colter, a black man who stands up for what’s right, even when he’s being shot at and his neighbors sometimes would rather he not stir up trouble. [Available from Netflix]
The superhero comics series was adapted into a politically-relevant drama about race and the criminal justice system. "It opens with the Tulsa race riots and it's kind of like this inciting event that frames what the characters are dealing with," Darnell Hunt says. "Race and policing is a backdrop, even though it's fantastical, it's still dealing with those issues in a very allegorical way." [Available with an HBO subscription]
Ava DuVernay's Netflix miniseries tells the story of the wrongful conviction of five black and Latino teenagers (dubbed the Central Park Five) for the 1989 assault on a female jogger in New York's Central Park. All five were exonerated in 2002 when serial rapist Matias Reyes confessed he was the sole attacker. Available from Netflix
The critically acclaimed police series stars Idris Elba, Dominic West and John Doman and tackles themes like drug wars and the education system. [Available with an HBO subscription]
As Transylvania Library does not generally serve a children and youth audience, our collection cannot fully support some books geared towards a younger demographic. However, we recommend looking at your local library for both books and lists of suggested reading. The links below are primarily to resource lists, or articles written by experts on the topic of discussing race.
In response to recent events in the United States, now is a crucial time to think about how we’re teaching our children – and ourselves – to combat racism. Included here is a growing list of resources from PBS and trusted partners, to use as tools to support anti-racist learning and growth.
There are thoughtful people who have something to say about how parents might acknowledge and discuss the topics underlying this week's nationwide protests — such as racism and social justice — while continuing to create joyful moments within their families.
Podcast Episode - NPR's Michel Martin talks with Jennifer Harvey, author of Raising White Kids: Bringing Up Children in a Racially Unjust America, about how to talk with white kids about racially charged events — and how to keep the conversation going. If you're a white (or nonblack) parent, don't wait for your kids to bring up the topic of race to start the discussion, says Harvey.
In the words of John F. Szabo: "As the cornerstone of democracy, libraries have a long history of being agents of social change, and we will continue that work. We believe in enlightenment through education, and we value lifelong learning. Through our inclusive resources, programs and staff, we will continue to shine a light on the path to justice, equality and reform."
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Audio Clip - NPR's Michel Martin talks to Jennifer Harvey, author of Raising White Kids: Bringing Up Children in a Racially Unjust America, about how to talk with white kids about racially-charged events. [Information about the book]