Combating Racism – Read, Watch, and Listen

I recently read an article encouraging readers to buy and read more books by writers of color. And to be honest, even though I’ve ready many authors of color, when I went to my bookshelf, I clearly had many many more books by white authors.

Since my right arm will be immobilized in a sling this coming week, after a minor out-patient shoulder procedure, I decided to research books, movies, documentaries, and podcasts by and about people of color to entertain myself since I won’t be typing away at my computer. I’m sharing my research about the books I may read, the movies and documentaries I’m planning to watch, and podcasts I may listen to.

And although on this week’s New York Times’ Paperback Nonfiction Best Seller List, 7 of the top 10 books examine racism in one form or another, I’ve already listed some of the more popular books about racism and its history in this country in earlier newsletters here and here.

So here are the lists. [NOTE: In my research I stumbled across children’s and young adults’ books so I’m including those here as well.] No list is totally inclusive.

Read (Adults)

  • I’m Judging You, Luvvie Ajayi
  • Notes of a Native Son, James Baldwin
  • The Fire Next Time, James Baldwin
  • Queenie, Candice Cary-Williams
  • Fruit of the Drunken Tree, Ingrid Rojas Contreras
  • Girl, Woman, Other, Bernardine Evaristo
  • Homegoing, Yaa Gyasi
  • The Onyx Crown (fanstasy), Alan Hurst
  • Barracoon, Zora Neale Hurston
  • Their Eyes Were Watching God, Zora Neale Hurston
  • The Color of Water, James McBride
  • There There, Tommy Orange
  • The Farm, Joanne Ramos
  • A Black Man in a White Coat , Damon Tweedy
  • The Color Purple, Alice Walker
  • The Temple of my Familiar, Alice Walker
  • Jubilee, Margaret Walker
  • The Fire This Time, Jesmyn Ward
  • The Nickel Boys, Colson Whitehead
  • The Underground Railroad, Colson Whitehead

Read (School-Age Children)

  • A to Z: Daily Alphabet Affirmation, Sonya J. Bowser
  • Full, Full, Full of Love, Trish Cooke & Paul Howard
  • Firebird, Misty Copeland & Christopher Myers
  • Bud, Not Buddy, Christopher Paul Curtis
  • The Watsons Go to Birmingham, Christopher Paul Curtis
  • My Man Blue (Picture Puffin Books), Nikki Grimes
  • Talkin’ About Bessie, Nikki Grimes and Earl B. Lewis
  • When Gorilla Goes Walking, Nikki Grimes
  • H.O.R.S.E., Christopher Myers
  • Gods of Jade and Shadow, Silvia Moreno-Garcia
  • Let it Shine, Andrea Davis Pinkney
  • All American Boys, Jason Reynolds
  • Ghost, Jason Reynolds
  • Red at the Bone, Jacqueline Woodson
  • The Day You Begin, Jacqueline Woodson

In addition:

Mawenzi House publishes many authors of color.

For children’s books, check out the Coretta Scott King Awards.

The National Council of Teachers of English highlights diverse graphic novels for children.


When I tire of reading, I plan to check out Black movies, TV and other media that show people of color as lead characters, and documentaries and conversations that highlight issues of race and racism. Here are a few:

  • 12 Years a Slave
  • 13th
  • Black-ish (TV Sitcom)
  • BlacKkKlansman
  • Blindspotting
  • I Am Not Your Negro
  • If Beale Street Could Talk
  • LA 92
  • Mudbound
  • Queen and Slim
  • Selma
  • Teach Us All
  • Uncomfortable Conversations with a Black Man (online series)
  • United Shades of America (documentary series)
  • Whose Streets?

Listen – Podcasts

And while I haven’t been an avid podcaster in the past, the inability to use my right arm (I’m right-handed) will give me time to check out some of these:

If you read, watch or listen to any of these, please send me your reactions. I’m very interested to know what you think of these selections. Happy reading, watching and listening!

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