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Here’s A Reading List Of Essential Titles About Race Issues

If all the coverage of rolling BLM movements and race issues across the globe have made you want to seek knowledge from those more knowledgeable, then you’ve come to the right place.

We’re still learning too, but we have put together a reading list of books from some very smart thinkers on this subject. And we’re sharing…

Me & White Supremacy: How to Recognise Your Privilege, Combat Racism and Change the World by Layla Saad 

Essential reading for everyone who holds white privilege. In 2018, Layla Saad ran a 28-day Insta challenge #MeAndWhiteSupremacy, for people with white privilege. The idea? To examine the ways that they are complicit in upholding the system. It quickly went viral as people began to take ownership of personal anti-racism work. This workbook is all this and more – her thoughts and journaling exercises for your own challenge.

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

This book sparked a national conversation about race issues in the UK. It explores everything from eradicated black history to the link between class and race in Britain today.

On the Other Side of Freedom by DeRay Mckesson

DeRay Mckesson is a key activist within BLM, who regularly appears in the media. Drawing from his own experiences as an activist, organiser, educator and public official in the US, DeRay lays out a case for taking apart the legacy of racism and to imagine the best of what is possible.

Skin Deep by Gavin Evans

A scientific approach to dismantling racist ideology… Through discoveries in genetics, palaeontology, archaeology and anthropology – from a renowned scholar. Gavin Evans grew up in Cape Town and was involved in the anti-apartheid struggle. 

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The Clapback: Your Guide to Calling out Racist Stereotypes by Elijah Lawal

Described as a definitive guide to calling out racial stereotypes and understanding the meaning behind them. The book examines the evolution of the negative stereotypes towards the black community through history and looks at both race and language.

Natives: Race and Class in the Ruins of Empire by Akala

From the first time he was stopped and searched as a child, to the day he realised his mum was white, race and class shaped musician Akala’s life. In this book he takes his own experiences and widens them to look at the social, historical and political factors.

Black, Listed: Black British Culture Explored by Jeffrey Boakye

This book celebrates the words and phrases that by choice or by circumstance define the Black British experience. It is described as an exploration of 21st century black identity told through a list of insults, insights – and everything in-between.

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So You Want To Talk About Race by Ijeoma Oluo

Ijeoma Oluo offers a contemporary, accessible take on the racial landscape in America, addressing head-on such race issues as privilege, police brutality, intersectionality, micro-aggressions, the BLM movement, and the “N” word.

Something lighter? Try Small Island by Andrea Levy

The multi-award-winning, million copy bestseller and one of the BBC’s ‘100 Novels That Shaped Our World’… In post-WW II London, a Jamaican RAF pilot is taken in as a lodger by Queenie Bligh. Gilbert’s wife Hortense had longed to leave Jamaica and start a better life in England, but when she joins him she finds London shabby, decrepit and far from the city of her dreams. Queenie’s neighbours are equally unimpressed by her lodgers.

Or this winner… Queenie by Candice Carty-Williams

A young woman trying to navigate her way in the world, Queenie is about identity, independence and carving your own path as a British-Jamaican millennial women. Funny, moving and it just won Book of the Year at the British Book Awards.

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