Racism has been on the forefront of everyone’s minds lately. This is due to the injustice we are seeing all around us. I am an African American woman with two brothers and a father. If I told you I wasn’t scared, I would be lying to you.
It’s clear that a change needs to come and fast.
We are witnessing history. Countless people are protesting against the racism that can still be found in our country. Many of them standing in solidarity with the Black Lives Matter movement. This has sparked some interesting and necessary conversations about race in America.
However, the topic of race and racism is not just something that should be talked about.
We should all be working towards learning about race, racism and social injustice so that we can correct our own actions as well as others. If you find yourself wanting to educate yourself on these topics i’ve put together a list of books for you.
Here are 5 books to read to educate yourself on race and racism today.
So You Want To Talk About Race?
The first book we’ll discuss is, So you want to talk about race. The author, Ijeoma Oluo, guides all races through conversations surrounding various subjects. From discussions about intersectionality and affirmative action to “model minorities” this book does not stray from the tough conversations that need to be had.
If you are looking to have open and honest conversations about race and racism, but don’t know where to start let this serve as your guide.
Why Are All The Black Kids Sitting Together In The Cafeteria?
The events of this past year have clearly shown that there are racial barriers still dividing us today.
If you were to walk into the cafeteria of any high school in America you would likely see Black, White and Latino youth sectioned off in separate groups. Beverly Daniel Tatum, PhD a trusted authority on the psychology of racism argues that honest conversation about racial identities is essential. Having honest conversation will ultimately dismantle racial and ethnic divides.
Those looking to dive into the psychology of race and racism should purchase this book.
This book was first published one year following the L.A. riots in 1993. In 2018 this book celebrated its 25th anniversary with an updated release.
This book covers many issues still plaguing the African-American community today. In addition to that, Race Matters discusses despair, black-Jewish relations, myths about black sexuality, black conservatism, the crisis in leadership in the black community, and the legacy of Malcolm X as well.
How To Be Less Stupid About Race
In How To Be Less Stupid About Race sociologist Crystal M. Fleming gives a no-holds-barred critique on race. Fleming draws on critical race theory and her experiences as a queer black millennial college professor and researcher to show how systemic racism exposes us all to racial ignorance.
This book is your essential guide to breaking through half-truths and misconceptions that have distorted the way race is represented in the media, classrooms, pop culture and politics.
The Fire This Time
Lastly, this book is a response to James Baldwin’s 1963 essay collection, “The Fire Next Time” and features essays from contemporary writers reflecting on racism and race.
Readers can expect to see numerous takes on the past, present and future of race in America. While there has been significant progress in the almost 60-years since Baldwin’s essays were published we are still a long way from a “post-racial” society.
If you are interested in hearing personal stories that will make you think this book is for you.
These books are just the start in your journey to educating yourself on the topic of race. Challenge yourself to find other ways to learn and continue to keep an open mind and heart.
*No affiliate links were used in this post. All books are sold by a black owned bookstore called The Lit. Bar, which was founded by Noëlle Santos*