some racial reads

Novels, essay collections, non-fiction, memoirs, biography, history. There are endless forms available to educate yourself.

No one is going to become an expert overnight and no one is asking for that. But this issue is more than a night’s work. So read up if you can – whichever form draws you most. 

I’m starting with The Fire Next Time by James Baldwin and The Fire This Time by Jesmyn Ward because these are what drew me. 

Have Black Lives Ever Mattered? by Mumia Abu-Jamal

The New Jim Crow by Michelle Alexander

The Fire Next Time by James Baldwin

Blindspot by Mahzarin R. Banaji & Anthony G. Greenwald

Between the World and Me by Ta-Nehisi Coates

White Fragility by Robin DiAngelo

An Indigenous Peoples’ History of the United States by Roxanne Dunbar-Ortiz

Tears We Cannot Stop by Michael Eric Dyson

Why I’m No Longer Talking to White People About Race by Reni Eddo-Lodge

Good Talk by Mira Jacob

Stamped: Racism, Antiracism, and You by Ibram X. Kendi

When They Call You A Terrorist by Patrisse Khan-Cullors & Asha Bandele

Mindful of Race by Ruth King

Citizen by Claudia Rankine

The Color of Law by Richard Rothstein

Me and White Supremacy by Layla F. Saad

Just Mercy by Bryan Stevenson

America’s Original Sin by Jim Wallis

The Fire This Time by Jesmyn Ward

The Warmth of Other Suns by Isabel Wilkerson

Beloved by Toni Morrison

Notes of a Native Son by James Baldwin

Sister Outsider by Audre Lorde

SIGN

We Can’t Breathe – Minneapolis-based petition calling for the immediate arrest and second degree murder charge of all four officers involved in George Floyd’s murder

NAACP petition #WeAreDoneDying – if you are outside the US and want to sign, you need to enter a US postcode – I used 11201 Brooklyn

Justice for George Floyd via Change.org

Justice for Breonna Taylor via Change.org. Taylor was fatally shot two months ago by LMPD police officers who stormed into her home whilst serving a ‘no-knock’ warrant, at the wrong address, with the individuals at the center of the investigation already in police custody. 

Justice for Ahmaud Arbery via Change.org. In February Ahmaud Arbery was pursued and fatally shot by Travis McMichael and his father Greg McMichael, under the false pretext of suspecting Arbery after witnessing a burglary in Satilla Shores of Glynn County. No one has the right to pursue, attack and kill an unarmed, non-threatening individual. Arbery was racially profiled. 

^^This case-specific list could go on. It cannot be left to BAME (Black, Asian and Minority Ethnic) people and communities to organise and speak every time this happens. 

DONATE

Minnesota Freedom Fund

Black Lives Matter

National Association for the Advancement of Coloured People (NAACP)

#BlackLivesMatter #JusticeForGeorgeFloyd #ICantBreathe 

tied up over tripping

I’ve been too tied up and worried about tripping over my words to really say anything for the last little while. But there’s a lot of shit going on and writing helps to straighten out my brain, so I’m gonna start spewing words onto the internet again. 

I felt tied up because I hold writing in such a sacred regard. It means something to me that I can’t articulate (GREAT START) and the thought of trivialising it with mediocre offerings nauseated me/ made me want to cancel myself before I’d penned a word. So I’ve been holding it reverently at arm’s length, always thinking but rarely writing, until something that used to fall out of me became something I feared, something I disconnected from, something I assured myself was not meant for me. 

The silent interim exacerbated my chronic reading habit. And I realised that it really is true: you don’t write because you want to say something; you write because you have something to say. Props to Fitzgerald for that sage take. It resonates.  

My something isn’t going to be read by the world or win Pulitzers. But if I don’t try to say it I might spew for real, so, here we are. Some hopefully sensical, potentially latently anarchistic unfiltered musings on whatever I’m thinking on will henceforth appear here.

I probably won’t say henceforth again.