What to Read
Alexander describes the rebirth of a caste-like system in the U.S. that has caused millions of American Americans to be put in jail and then regulated to a permanent second-class status, denying them the rights supposedly won in the Civil Rights Movement.
Dollinger examines American Jewish political culture and Black Power- inspired ethnic nationalism. He challenges widely-held beliefs about the black-Jewish alliance and describes a new political consensus based on identity politics.
Kendi details the entire history of anti-Black racist ideas and their effect on American history through the life stories of five major American intellectuals. He combats the idea that racist ideas stem from ignorance and gives the reader the tools they need to expose the discriminatory policies and racial disparities in America.
In his memoir, Kendi helps readers rethink their deeply held, implicit beliefs and personal relationships and reexamine the policies and social arrangements we support. He guides the reader in imagining what an antiracist society would look like and how we can build one.
In Villaneuva’s analysis of the dysfunctional colonial dynamics in philanthropy and finance, he denounces systems of oppression while advocating for justice. He draws on Native traditions to restore balance, heal our divides, and provide solutions for fixing the systemic imbalances in philanthropy.
Thiong’o’s collection of essays about language and its constructive role in national culture, history, and identity, while simultaneously summarizing all of the social justice issues Thiong’o is passionate about.
In Coates’ letter to his adolescent son, he attempts to answer questions surrounding America’s racial history and what it means to inhabit a black body. Coates shares the story of his awakening to the truth about his place in the world.
In this young adult novel, 16-year-old Starr Carter’s world is shattered when she witnesses the fatal shooting of her childhood best friend, Kahlil, by a police officer. His death is a national headline, resulting in protests and pressure on Starr to speak out about what really happened that night. Inspired by the Black Lives Matter movement, this novel dives deep into a young woman’s struggle for racial justice.
Contains articles on many Black heroes in history who were pioneers and ground breakers in many different fields.
Articles Specific to the Jewish Community
Empathy Doesn’t Come with Conditions by Rabbi Moshe Rosenberg
Understanding BLM by Israel Action Network
Racial Justice & Equity by Indianapolis JCRC
Background on “Deadly Exchange” by Israel Action Network
Creating a Space for Conversations about Racial Justice by eJewishPhilanthropy
Jewish White Allyship by eJewishPhilanthropy
Not Free to Desist: An open letter An open letter from Black Jews, Non-Black Jews of Color, and our allies to Jewish Federations, Foundations, Organizations, and Initiatives
Jewish communities are finally paying attention to Jews of color. Here’s the long road to how they got there. by Josefin Dolsten, Jewish Telegraphic Agency
The Anti-Semitism We Didn’t See by Jemele Hill, The Atlantic
Oy Vey, Desean! by Larry Platt, The Philadelphia Citizen
Our True Colors by Marra B. Gad, Tablet Magazine
What to Listen to
Episode No. 14: American Jewish Communities After George Floyd features guests Ginna Green of Bend the Arc: A Jewish Partnership for Justice and Jews of Color Field Building Initiative, and Isaiah Rothstein of Hazon with host Yehuda Kurtzer discussing the stake of American Jews in the struggle.
Discussions on racial disparities, policy, and equality with a key focus on How to Be an Antiracist and understanding how to uproot racism in society and within ourselves.
Fourteen-part documentary series by John Biewen, featuring Dr. Chenjerai Kumanyika that looks at where the notion of “whiteness” comes from and why it has led to white-identity politics and police brutality.
What to Watch
How to Act
Over the Month of Elul, before the Jewish High Holidays which encourage individual and communal reflection, take part in Confessions of the Heart, a racial equity challenge offered by Jewish Emergent Network. The challenge consists of 30 days of anti-racism reflection, discovery, action, and transformation through a daily regimen of readings, videos, podcasts, and calls to action through daily prompts and two virtual communal conversations.
Become involved with the Jewish Multiracial Network, an organization that supports Jewish diversity throughout communities via capacity development, community development, community empowerment, and social capital. You can participate by signing up for the JMN newsletter, attending a JMN event in your area, volunteer with JMN, or go to the annual retreat.
An organization that is committed to using the full Constitutional power, statutory authority, and financial resources of the federal government to ensure that African Americans and other marginalized communities have the opportunity to achieve the American Dream.
Read and discuss Jewish texts for a d’var torah on Racial Justice.
START DISCUSSION ABOUT RACE WITH YOUR FRIENDS AND FAMILY.
Encourage them to read and discuss books and articles about race.