I’ve talked a lot about educating our kids about racism (and I’ve got more to come), but I also wanted to talk about educating ourselves. If you’ve followed a lot of Black female activists over the last few weeks, then you have probably heard a lot of them mention that white women need to do “the work.” What is “the work” exactly? It’s educating yourself about systemic racism (watch this video for a quick explanation), implicit bias and how white people benefit from white supremacy whether we think we support it or not.
That’s the short answer. I don’t have the long answer because I’ve got a lot of work to do.
I know we all have families and finding time for this is difficult, so I’m going to give both myself and all of you a whole lot of ways in. There are movies to watch and podcasts to listen to and books to read. Out of this whole list, I’ve watched “When They See Us” which was heartbreaking and a phenomenal series by Ava DuVernay on Netflix and “Dear White People” which is a funny half hour series (also on Netflix) that is enlightening, but also very easily digestible. I’m planning on watching “13th” tonight.
I’ve also been following a ton of new Black voices on Instagram, who have taught me a lot, like how a white woman should take correction from a Black woman when we try to be supportive but inevitably slip up. I’ve listed some of my recent follows at the end of this post.
Whatever you do, I’m happy to be surrounded by so many fellow white woman who are willing to get started. As I said yesterday, we will learn together.
13th: In this thought-provoking documentary, scholars, activists and politicians analyze the criminalization of African Americans and the U.S. prison boom. (Netflix)
When They See Us: Five teens from Harlem become trapped in a nightmare when they’re falsely accused of a brutal attack in Central Park. Based on the true story. (Netflix)
Explained: The Racial Wealth Gap (Season 1, Episode 20): Cory Booker and others discuss how slavery, housing discrimination and centuries of inequality have compounded to create a racial wealth gap. (Netflix)
Dear White People: Students of color navigate the daily slights and slippery politics of life at an Ivy League college that’s not nearly as “post-racial” as it thinks. (Netflix)
The Hate U Give: A teen witnesses the fatal shooting of her childhood friend by a trigger-happy cop and must decide whether to testify or not. (Hulu or Amazon Prime)
America Inside Out: Re-Righitng History: Nat Geo’s docuseries with Katie Couric explores the controversy over removing confederate monuments.. (National Geographic)
Becoming: Join former first lady Michelle Obama in an intimate documentary looking at her life, hopes and connection with others as she tours with “Becoming.” (Netflix)
I Am Not Your Negro: Based on James Baldwin’s unfinished book, this visual essay explores racism through the stories of Medgar Evers, Malcolm X and Martin Luther King Jr. (Amazon Prime)
Class Divide: This documentary highlights the recent effects of hyper-gentrification in New York City’s West Chelsea, focusing on an intersection where an elite private school sits directly across the street from public housing projects.
Fruitvale Station: The story of Oscar Grant III, a 22-year-old Bay Area resident, who crosses paths with friends, enemies, family, and strangers on the last day of 2008. (Amazon Prime)
Pod Save The People, organizer and activist DeRay Mckesson explores news, culture, social justice, and politics with analysis from fellow activists Brittany Packnett, Sam Sinyangwe, and writer Dr. Clint Smith III
Good Ancestor Podcast: An interview series with change-makers & culture-shapers exploring what it means to be a good ancestor. Hosted by globally respected speaker, anti-racism educator, and New York Times bestselling author of Me and White Supremacy, Layla F. Saad.
Say Your Mind: Kelechi Okafor shares her unique and hilarious take on Tarot, current events and pop culture sprinkled with bad language and an abundance of straws.
Still Processing: Hosted by Jenna Wortham and Wesley Morrison, two culture writers for The New York Times. They devour TV, movies, art, music and the internet to find the things that move them — to tears, awe and anger.
Code Switch: 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.
Hear To Slay: The black feminist podcast of your dreams. Roxane Gay and Tressie McMillan Cottom offer uncommonly incisive reads of the politics that shape the world we live in.
Pod For The Cause: The Leadership Conference on Civil and Human Rights launched “Pod for the Cause” podcast to expand the conversation on critical civil and human rights challenges of our day: census, justice reform, policing, education, fighting hate & bias, judicial nominations, fair courts, voting rights, media & tech, economic security, immigration, and human rights.
What a Day: Cuts through all the chaos and crimes to help you understand what matters and how you can fix it—all in just 15 minutes. Comedian Akilah Hughes and reporter Gideon Resnick break down the biggest news of the day, share important stories you may have missed, and show you what “Fox & Friends” would sound like if it were hosted by two people whose parents read to them as children.
Momentum: A Race Forward Podcast: Co-hosts Chevon and Hiba give their unique takes on race and pop culture, and uplift narratives of hope, struggle, and joy, as we continue to build the momentum needed to advance racial justice in our policies, institutions, and culture. Deepen your racial justice lens and get inspired to drive action.
How to be Anti-Racist by Ibram X. Kendi
The New Jim Crow: Mass Incarceration in the Age of Colorblindness by Michelle Alexander
White Fragility: Why It’s So Hard for White People to Talk About Racism by Robin Diangelo
So You Want to Talk about Race by Ijeoma Oluo
Why I’m No Longer Talking to White People About Race by Reni Eddo-Lodge
The Warmth of Other Suns: The Epic Story of America’s Great Migration by Isabel Wilkerson
Biased: Uncovering the Hidden Prejudice That Shapes What We See, Think, and Do by Dr. Jennifer Eberhardt
A Spectacular Secret: Lynching in American Life and Literature by Jacqueline Goldsby
Raising White Kids: Bringing Up Children In A Racially Unjust America by Jennifer Harvey
Let’s Talk About Race by Julius Lester
Eloquent Rage: A Black Feminist Discovers Her Superpower by Dr. Brittney Cooper
I Know Why the Caged Bird Sings by Maya Angelou
The Fire Next Time by James Baldwin
Accounts to Follow on Instagram:
Black Lives Matter: Official IG for the Black Lives Matter Global Network.
The Conscious Kid: Parenting and Education through a Critical Race Lens.
Rachel Cargle: writer and lecturer who explores the intersection between race and womanhood.
Lalya F. Saad: Writer of Me and White Supremacy.
Moemotivate: Monique Melton is an anti-racism educator and the podcast host of Shine Brighter Together.
Ijeoma Oluo: Writer of the new book So You Want to Talk About Race
Color Of Change: Designs campaigns to help end practices that unfairly hold Black people back and champions solutions that move us all forward.
The Leadership Conference on Civil & Human Rights: The nation’s oldest & largest civil rights coalition, building an America as good as its ideals.
Showing Up for Racial Justice: A national network of groups & individuals organizing white people for racial justice.
Please let me know in the comments if there is anything you are reading, watching, listening to or following that you have found helpful.