YWCA Evanston/North Shore

Racial Justice Resources

In our continuing efforts to support all who are working to achieve racial equity, the YWCA has created this resource page. By no means an exhaustive list, it is a great place for all of us on the journey toward transformation, to start.

Reviews provided by publishers or amazon.com, unless otherwise noted. We will continue building this site, and welcome your recommendations of films, books, websites that have been helpful to you. Some titles are available in our YWCA Racial Justice lending library – come borrow!


For those who want to read the full history of our country – with all groups represented, we highly recommend:

The People's History of the United States
Howard Zinn
Known for its lively, clear prose as well as its scholarly research, A People's History of the United States was the one of the first volumes to tell America's story from the point of view of -- and in the words of -- America's women, factory workers, African Americans, Native Americans, working poor, and immigrant laborers.

Books with general focus of race or racism

Readings for Diversity and Social Justice: An Anthology on Racism, Antisemitism, Sexism, Heterosexism, Ableism, and Classism
Maurianne Adams, Warren Blumenfeld, Rosie Casteñeda, Heather W. Hackman, Madeline L. Peters, and Ximena Zúñiga (Eds.).
The first reader to cover the scope of oppressions in America, Readings for Diversity and Social Justice covers six thematic issues: racism, sexism, Anti-Semitism, heterosexism, classism and ableism. The Reader contains a mix of short personal and theoretical essays as well as entries designed to challenge readers to take action to end oppressive behavior and to affirm diversity and racial justice.

“I’m Not a Racist But…” The Moral Quandary of Race
Lawrence Blum
The author uses moral philosophy to clarify what racism is, based in history and its current usage. He looks to develop a more varied and nuanced vocabulary for talking about the racial domain. Chapters include: “Racism”: Its Core Meaning; Can Blacks Be Racist?; Varieties of Racial Ills; Racial Discrimination and Color Blindness; “Race”: What We Mean and What We Think We Mean; “Race”: A Brief History, with Moral Implications; Do Races Exist?; Racialized Groups and Social Constructions; and Should We Try To Give Up Race?

Environmental Health and Racial Equity: Building Environmentally Just, Sustainable, and Livable Communities
Robert D. Bullard, Ph.D.; Glenn S. Johnson, Ph.D.; Angel O. Torres, M.C.P.
The book captures the current state of the environmental justice movement and its work around health and racial equity over the past 25 years. While mounting grassroots mobilization efforts over the past three decades has resulted in protective new laws and regulations, minority neighborhoods continue to serve as “dumping grounds” for polluting facilities, according to the book. According to the authors, “One of the most important indicators of an individual’s health is one’s street address or neighborhood. Residents who live on the ‘wrong side of the tracks’ are subjected to elevated environmental health threats.”

Critical Race Theory: An Introduction
Richard Delgado & Jean Stefancic
This book can serve as an introduction to one of the most influential, as well as controversial, intellectual movements in American law and politics: Critical Race Theory, the school of thought that believes that race lies at the very nexus of American life.

Someone Knows My Name
Lawrence Hill (novel)
Kidnapped as a child from Africa, Aminata Diallo is enslaved in South Carolina but escapes during the chaos of the Revolutionary War. In Manhattan she becomes a scribe for the British, recording the names of blacks who have served the King and earned freedom in Nova Scotia. But the hardship and prejudice there prompt her to follow her heart back to Africa, then on to London, where she bears witness to the injustices of slavery and its toll on her life and a whole people. It is a story that no listener, and no reader, will ever forget. Reading group guide included.

Privilege, Power, and Difference
Allan G. Johnson
This brief book allows readers to examine systems of privilege and difference in our society. Written in an accessible, conversational style, Johnson links theory with engaging examples in ways that enable readers to see the underlying nature and consequences of privilege and their connection to it. This book has been used to shed light on issues of power and privilege.

Unequal Childhoods: Class, Race, and Family Life
Annette Lareau
The author conducted an ethnographic study of 12 families raising third graders from different social classes over a two-year period. Chapters are divided into 3 sections on The Organization of Daily Life, Language Use, and Families and Institutions.

Lies My Teacher Told Me: Everything Your History Book Got Wrong
James W. Louwen
After surveying eighteen leading high school American history texts, Louwen has concluded that not one does a decent job of making history interesting or memorable. Marred by an embarrassing combination of blind patriotism, mindless optimism, sheer misinformation, and outright lies, these books omit almost all the ambiguity, passion, conflict, and drama from our past. In this revised edition, packed with updated material, Loewen explores how historical myths continue to be perpetuated in today's climate and adds an eye-opening chapter on the lies surrounding 9/11 and the Iraq War.

Fatal Invention
Dorothy Roberts
In this analysis, NU professor Roberts argues that America is once again at the brink of a virulent outbreak of classifying population by race. By searching for differences at the molecular level, a new race-based science is obscuring racism in our society and legitimizing state brutality against communities of color at a time when America claims to be post-racial. Moving from an account of the evolution of race—proving that it has always been a mutable and socially defined political division supported by mainstream science—Roberts delves deep into the current debates, interrogating the newest science and biotechnology, interviewing its researchers, and exposing the political consequences obscured by the focus on genetic difference. (from The New Press)

Courageous Conversations About Race
Glenn Singleton & Curtis W. Linton, editors
"Talking about race and its effect on academic achievement remains one of the most elusive conversations today. In their new book, Singleton and Linton help educators understand and engage in the discourse around race that affects the success of any curriculum, instructional methodology, or program implementation. The book's exercises and prompts assists school and district leadership teams in articulating those innate behaviors, beliefs, and attitudes that impair our ability to be effective in closing the racial achievement gap. I am encouraged to know that educators will be empowered and supported as we develop our personal capacity to address one of the most crucial elements of our society: the education of our children." (Yvette M. Irving, Principal )

By the Color of Our Skin: The Illusion of Integration and the Reality of Race
Leonard Steinhorn and Barbara Diggs-Brown
The authors, one black and one white, explore the myth of integration. They take no political stance and offer no grand solutions; they prefer realism. The first section examines the image and reality of integration in America, whether it helps or hinders race relations. The second part explores differences through the role of history, culture, the media, perceptions and politics. The third looks at the future, some success stories, and recommends ways to think beyond the racial box. Success stories include Shaker Heights, OH, Corning Corporation, and the US military.

Overcoming Our Racism: The Journey to Liberation
Derald Wing Sue
This uncompromising anti-racist manifesto by Sue, a Chinese-American psychologist, argues that the countless daily slights inflicted by such "unconscious and unintentional racists," do more harm to minorities than the occasional hate-crime. He reveals the subtle but pervasive bias against minorities in the economy, the media, school system, even the subconscious mind (whites have involuntary negative reactions when flashed subliminal images of black faces), and shows how the "invisible whiteness of being" allows whites to remain oblivious to the privileges they enjoy. [Publishers Weekly]

“Why Are All the Black Kids Sitting Together in the Cafeteria?”
Beverly Daniel Tatum, editor
Tatum, a renowned authority on the psychology of racism, asserts that we do not know how to talk about our racial differences: Whites are afraid of using the wrong words and being perceived as "racist" while parents of color are afraid of exposing their children to painful racial realities too soon. Using real-life examples and the latest research, Tatum presents strong evidence that straight talk about our racial identities-whatever they may be-is essential if we are serious about facilitating communication across racial and ethnic divides.

Can We Talk about Race? And Other Conversations in an Era of School Resegregation
Beverly Daniel Tatum
Tatum’s latest book follows up with a broader question about the nation's readiness to talk honestly about the forces that continue to make race such a thorny issue. In separate essays, Tatum probes the impact of continued segregation in public schools--mostly the result of segregated neighborhoods--on classroom achievement; the difficulty of developing and sustaining interracial relationships in a society that practices silence on race; and the longer-term implications of continued segregation on a changing democracy with a growing nonwhite population. Tatum blends policy analysis and personal recollections as an educator and self-described "integration baby".

Acting White: The Curious History of a Racial Slur
Stephan Thernstrom and Ron Christie
Acting White demonstrates how the charge that any African-American who is successful, well mannered, or well educated is “acting white,” is a slur that continues to haunt blacks. Ron Christie traces the complex history of the phrase, from Uncle Tom’s Cabin to the tensions between Martin Luther King, Jr., and Malcolm X to Bill Cosby’s controversial NAACP speech in 2004. The author also writes candidly of being challenged by black students for his “acting white,” and also of being labeled a race traitor in Congress by daring to be Republican.

Race Relations: Opposing Viewpoints
James D. Torr (Ed.)
Collection of essays written with opposing viewpoints juxtaposed in chapter pairs, with its purpose to encourage dialogue, discussion, discovery of the breadth of a topic area, in support of free speech and all of us engaging in higher-level thinking. The following topics are covered: What is the state of race relations?; Is racism a serious problem?; What should government do to improve race relations?; and How can society improve race relations?

New Perspectives on Racial Identity Development: A Theoretical and Practical Anthology
Charmaine Wijeyesinghe and Bailey Jackson (Eds.)
The volume brings together leaders in the field to deepen, broaden, and reassess our understandings of racial identity development among Blacks, Latino/as, Asian Americans, American Indians, Whites, and multiracial people.

Between Barack and a Hard Place: Racism and White Denial in the Age of Obama
Tim Wise
From the Civil Rights struggle, to Dr. King's dream, to Barack Obama's election, Tim Wise provides us with an extremely important and timely analysis of the increasing complexity of race on the American political and social landscape. "His writing and thinking constitute a bulwark of common sense, and uncommon wisdom, on the subject of race, politics and culture. He is a national treasure." –Michael Eric Dyson

Color Blind
Tim Wise

Color Blind presents a timely and provocative look at contemporary racism and offers fresh ideas on what can be done to achieve true social justice and economic equality. Focusing on disparities in employment, housing, education and healthcare, Wise argues that racism is indeed still an acute problem in the United States today, and that colorblind policies actually worsen the problem of racial injustice.

The Nature of Race: How Scientists Think and Teach about the Human Difference
Ann Morning
What do Americans think “race” means? What determines one’s race—appearance, ancestry, genes, or culture? How do education, government, and business influence our views on race? To unravel these complex questions, Ann Morning takes a close look at how scientists are influencing ideas about race through teaching and textbooks. Drawing from in-depth interviews with biologists, anthropologists, and undergraduates, Morning explores different conceptions of race—finding for example, that while many sociologists now assume that race is a social invention or “construct,” anthropologists and biologists are far from such a consensus. The Nature of Race dissects competing definitions in straightforward language to reveal the logic and assumptions underpinning today’s claims about human difference.


Our Black Year: One Family's Quest to Buy Black in America's Racially Divided Economy
Maggie Anderson
December 17, 2013 Maggie and John Anderson were successful African American professionals raising two daughters in a tony suburb of Chicago. But they felt uneasy over their good fortune. Most African Americans live in economically starved neighborhoods, yet most of the businesses in their communities are owned by outsiders. On January 1, 2009 the Andersons embarked on a year-long public pledge to "buy black." Drawing on economic research and social history as well as her personal story, Maggie Anderson shows why the black economy continues to suffer and issues a call to action to all of us to do our part to reverse this trend.


The Diversity Paradox: Immigration and the Color Line in Twenty-First Century America
Jennifer Lee and Frank D. Bean
Winner of the 2011 Otis Dudley Duncan Award for Outstanding Scholarship in Social Demography. In The Diversity Paradox, authors Jennifer Lee and Frank Bean take the legacy of slavery and immigration and ask if today s immigrants are destined to become racialized minorities akin to African Americans or if their incorporation into U.S. society will more closely resemble that of their European predecessors. They also tackle the vexing question of whether America s new racial diversity is helping to erode the tenacious black/white color line.


Racism without Racists: Color-Blind Racism and the Persistence of Racial Inequality in America
Eduardo Bonilla-Silva
In the third edition of his highly acclaimed book, Bonilla-Silva continues to challenge color-blind thinking. He has now extended this challenge with a new chapter on Obama's election addressing the apparent miracle of a black man elected as the 44th President of the nation despite the fact that racial progress has stagnated since the 1980s and, in some areas, even regressed.


The Face of Discrimination: How Race and Gender Impact Work and Home Lives
Vincents Roscigno
Thousands of individuals are discriminated against each year due to their race or sex, even 40 years after the Civil Rights Act. The Face of Discrimination documents the forms, character, and implications of race and sex discrimination at work and in housing, drawing from archived discrimination suits themselves. Going beyond traditional social science research on the topic, this book grounds the reader in the reality of discrimination as it is played out in the actual jobs, neighborhoods, and lives of real people.

Inclusion: The Power of Difference in Medical Research Stephen Epstein

Until the mid-1980s, scientists often studied groups of white, middle-aged men and assumed that conclusions drawn from studying them would apply to the rest of the population. But struggles involving advocacy groups, experts, and Congress led to reforms that forced researchers to diversify the population from which they drew for clinical research. While the prominence of these inclusive practices has offered hope to traditionally underserved groups, Epstein argues that it has drawn attention away from the tremendous inequalities in health that are rooted not in biology but in society.


Race in the Schoolyard: Negotiating the Color Line in Classrooms and Communities
Amanda E. Lewis
Could your kids be learning a fourth R at school: reading, writing, ’rithmatic, and race?
Race in the Schoolyard takes us to a place most of us seldom get to see in action, our children’s classrooms, and reveals the lessons about race that are communicated there. Amanda E. Lewis spent a year observing classes at three elementary schools, two multiracial urban and one white suburban. Lewis explains how the curriculum, both expressed and hidden, conveys many racial lessons.

The Mismeasure of Man (Revised and Expanded)
Stephan Jay Gould
When published in 1981, The Mismeasure of Man was immediately hailed as a masterwork, the ringing answer to those who would classify people, rank them according to their supposed genetic gifts and limits.
In this edition, Stephen Jay Gould has written a substantial new introduction telling how and why he wrote the book and tracing the subsequent history of the controversy on innateness right through The Bell Curve. Further, he has added five essays on questions of The Bell Curve in particular and on race, racism, and biological determinism in general.


Behind the Kitchen Door
Saru Jayaraman
How do restaurant workers live on some of the lowest wages in America? And how do poor working conditions—discriminatory labor practices, exploitation, and unsanitary kitchens—affect the meals that arrive at our restaurant tables? Saru Jayaraman, who launched the national restaurant workers' organization Restaurant Opportunities Centers United, sets out to answer these questions by following the lives of restaurant workers in New York City, Washington, D.C., Philadelphia, Los Angeles, Chicago, Houston, Miami, Detroit, and New Orleans.\

The Education of a White Parent: Wrestling with Race and Opportunity in the Boston Public Schools
Susan Naimark
Soon after enrolling her older son in a Boston public elementary school, Susan Naimark began to see that opportunities offered to her kids were often unavailable to their classmates of color. In The Education of a White Parent Naimark candidly describes her sometimes faltering efforts to create change in the school system, tracing what turns out to be the gradual transformation of a dismayed parent into a parent leader, school board member, and advocate for equal opportunities for all students.
Alongside compelling stories about her experiences, Naimark discusses numerous national studies, identifying the pattern of inequities in public schools and some signs of progress.


Longing: Stories of Racial Healing
Phyllis Eugene Unterschuetz
Longing: Stories of Racial Healing is a collection of true stories from the journey of one white couple toward understanding their hidden fears, prejudices, and ultimate connection to African-Americans. The authors describe uncomfortable and embarrassing situations, examine their mistakes and unconscious assumptions, and share what they have learned about being white. They share insight from black friends and strangers who taught them to see beyond superficial theories and to confront the attitudes that have shaped how Americans think about race.

Sundown Towns: A Hidden Dimension of American Racism
James Loewen
"Don't let the sun go down on you in this town." We equate these words with the Jim Crow South but, in a sweeping analysis of American residential patterns, James W. Loewen demonstrates that strict racial exclusion was the norm in American towns and villages for much of the twentieth century.
No blacks allowed, especially after dark was the unwritten rule in a "sundown" town. In his trademark revelatory style, bestselling author James W. Loewen explores one of America's best-kept secrets as he unearths the making of sundown towns and discloses the fact that many white neighborhoods and suburbs are the result of years of racism and segregation. Sundown Towns tells the story of how these towns came into existence, what maintains them, and what to do about them. It also deepens our understanding of the role racism has played and continues to play in our society.

African-American focus

The New Jim Crow: Mass Incarceration in the Age of Colorblindness
Michelle Alexander
As the United States celebrates the nation's "triumph over race" with the election of Barack Obama, the majority of young black men in major American cities are locked behind bars or have been labeled felons for life. Although Jim Crow laws have been wiped off the books, an astounding percentage of the African American community remains trapped in a subordinate status--much like their grandparents before them.
In this incisive critique, former litigator-turned-legal-scholar Michelle Alexander provocatively argues that we have not ended racial caste in America: we have simply redesigned it. (Review from amazon.com)

Racial Healing, Confronting the Fear Between Blacks and Whites
Harlon A. Dalton
"We have run away from race for far too long," declares Yale law professor Dalton, who describes himself as a mostly genial black man (married to a white woman) whose cross-racial conversations rarely stray from safe topics. He insightfully argues for engagement about race, explaining why he wouldn't want to be defined by his blackness yet wouldn't want to be seen as raceless. He advises whites, especially those who falsely equate ethnicity with race, to recognize the benefits of skin privilege. Blacks, he says, must better account for the enduring imprint of slavery on the national psyche, and must do more to maintain community and reassess their culture. Dalton offers no political program, but he observes that, were racial hierarchy vitiated, there would be far less pressure for group representation in every workplace and school.

The Rage of a Privileged Class: Why are Middle-Class Blacks Angry? Why Should America Care?
Ellis Cose
The author interviews successful blacks, both men and women, and outlines their continuing encounters with prejudice and its damaging effects on their lives, careers, children, showing that middle-class blacks are as angry and pessimistic as those struggling in society’s margins. Chapter headings include: Tiptoeing around the truth; A hostile and welcoming workplace; Affirmative action and the dilemma of the “qualified”; Young people, old ideas; White racism, Black racism, and the search for our better selves; No more white guilt.

A Member of the Club
Lawrence Otis Graham
Informed and driven by his experience as an upper-middle-class African American who lives/works in a predominately white environment, provocative Graham offers a unique perspective on the subject of race. An uncompromising work that will challenge the mindset of every reader, this is a searching book of essays ranging from examining life as a black Princetonian, corporate lawyer to exploring life as a black busboy at an all white country-club. From New York magazine cover stories to such new essays as "I Never Dated a White Girl" and "My Dinner with Mister Charlie: A Black Man's Undercover Guide to Dining with Dignity at Ten Top New York Restaurants," Graham challenges racial prejudice among White Americans while demanding greater accountability and self-determination from his peers in black America.

Disintegration: The Splintering of Black America
Eugene Robinson
In this groundbreaking book, Robinson argues that over decades of desegregation, affirmative action, and immigration, instead of one black America, now there are: a mainstream middle-class majority with a full ownership stake in American society; a large, abandoned minority with less hope of escaping poverty and dysfunction than at any time since Reconstruction’s crushing end; a small transcendent elite with such enormous wealth, power, and influence that even white folks have to genuflect; and two newly emergent groups—individuals of mixed-race heritage and communities of recent black immigrants—that make us wonder what “black” is even supposed to mean. Robinson shows that these black Americas have become so distinct that they view each other with mistrust and apprehension. And yet all are reluctant to acknowledge division. Disintegration offers a new paradigm for understanding race in America, with implications both hopeful and dispiriting. It shines necessary light on debates about affirmative action, racial identity, and the ultimate question of whether the black community will endure.

A Country of Strangers: Blacks and Whites in America
David K. Shipler
This Pulitzer-prize-winning author explores the language of black-white stereotypes and discrimination, the psychological landscape, the competing impulses of integration and separation through the stories of black and whites in modern America. The three parts include chapters on integration, mixing, memory, body, mind, morality, violence, power, decoding racism, acting affirmatively, and breaking the silence.



Race: How Blacks & Whites Think & Feel About the American Obsession
Studs Terkel
A seminal, candid book, exploring how ordinary Americans see race and what has gone on since the 1960s. From the jacket: “How do attitudes towards race affect their daily lives, their relations to their fellow Americans, their images of themselves? He brings out the full complexity of the thoughts and emotions of both blacks and whites, uncovering a fascinating narrative of changing opinions.”

Slavery by Another Name
Douglas Blackmon
In this groundbreaking historical expose, Douglas A. Blackmon brings to light one of the most shameful chapters in American history—an “Age of Neoslavery” that thrived from the aftermath of the Civil War through the dawn of World War II.Using a vast record of original documents and personal narratives, Douglas A. Blackmon unearths the lost stories of slaves and their descendants who journeyed into freedom after the Emancipation Proclamation and then back into the shadow of involuntary servitude shortly thereafter. By turns moving, sobering, and shocking, this unprecedented account reveals the stories of those who fought unsuccessfully against the re-emergence of human labor trafficking, the companies that profited most from neoslavery, and the insidious legacy of racism that reverberates today.

Hidden Cost of Being African American
Thomas M. Shapiro
Looks at the role even modest family wealth contributes to upward mobility in many white families, while a racially tinged real estate market devalues black home ownership, making it harder for black families to accumulate and pass down wealth. Shapiro offers some modest, extremely workable solutions.

Some of My Best Friends Are Black: The Strange Story of Integration in America
Tanner Colby
In this charming and surprisingly funny book, Colby takes a fresh, honest look at race relations, showing us both how far we've come in bridging the racial divide and how far we've yet to go.

Asian focus

Race, Rights, and the Asian American Experience
Angelo Ancheta
Ancheta demonstrates how United States civil rights laws have been framed by a black-white model of race that typically ignores the experiences of other groups, including Asian Americans. When racial discourse is limited to antagonisms between black and white, Asian Americans often find themselves in a racial limbo, marginalized or unrecognized as full participants.

Ancheta examines legal and social theories of racial discrimination, ethnic differences in the Asian American population, nativism, citizenship, language, school desegregation, and affirmative action. In the second edition of this influential book, Ancheta also covers post-9/11 anti-Asian sentiment and racial profiling. He analyzes recent legal cases involving political empowerment, language rights, human trafficking, immigrant rights, and affirmative action in higher education--many of which move the country farther away from the ideals of racial justice. On a more positive note, he reports on the progress Asian Americans have made in the corporate sector, politics, the military, entertainment, and academia.

The Myth of the Model Minority: Asian Americans Facing Racism
Rosalind S. Chou, and Joe R. Feagin
In this path-breaking book, sociologists Rosalind Chou and Joe Feagin examine, for the first time in depth, racial stereotyping and discrimination daily faced by Asian Americans long viewed by whites as the model minority. Drawing on more than 40 field interviews across the country, they examine the everyday lives of Asian Americans in numerous different national origin groups. Their data contrast sharply with white-honed, especially media, depictions of racially untroubled Asian American success.

Asian American Dreams: The Emergence of an American People
Helen Zia
In this ambitious and richly detailed account of the formation of the Asian-American community—which extends from the first major wave of immigration to “Gold Mountain” (as the Chinese dubbed America during the gold rush) to the recent influx of Southeast Asians, who since 1975 have nearly doubled the Asian-American population—Zia fills in the MIH (Missing in History) details, while examining the complex origins of the events she relates. The result is a vivid personal and national history, in which Zia guides us through a range of recent flash points that have galvanized the Asian-American community. [from Publishers Weekly]


“Hidden Discrimination Against African Americans and Asians In Ivy League Admissions”

“Some Asians' college strategy: Don't check 'Asian' ”

Latino focus

Greasers and Gringos: Latinos, Law, and the American Imagination
Steven Bender
"Bender's got a noble goal: to show that the stereotypes Americans heap on Latino immigrants don't just make for rude conversation, they directly shape policy decisions. The book compellingly articulates just how deeply ingrained the images of lazy, thieving, drunkard Latinos and sexually voracious, fertile Latinas are in American culture." – City Limits

The Latino Threat - Constructing Immigrants, Citizens, and the Nation
Leo R. Chavez
From volunteers ready to patrol the U.S.-Mexico border to the hundreds of thousands of men, women, and children who have marched in support of immigrant rights, the United States has witnessed a surge of involvement in immigration activism. In The Latino Threat, Leo R. Chavez critically investigates the media stories about and recent experiences of immigrants to show how prejudices and stereotypes have been used to malign an entire immigrant population—and to define what it means to be an American.

[Some] perpetuate the notion that Latinos, particularly Mexicans, are an invading force bent on reconquering land once considered their own. Through a perceived refusal to learn English and an "out of control" birthrate, many say that Latinos are destroying the American way of life. But Chavez questions these assumptions and offers facts to counter the myth that Latinos are a threat to the security and prosperity of our nation. Chavez concludes that citizenship is not just about legal definitions, but about participation in society.

We are Americans; Undocumented Students Pursuing the American Dream
William Perez
Perez makes a strong case for immigration reform, specifically reform through which undocumented immigrants who pursue higher education would be granted legal status. To this end, he presents and analyzes the experiences of 20 undocumented or formerly undocumented students, with sections on students at the high school, community college, college, and graduate levels... The work's strength lies in its in-depth portrayal of undocumented students' experiences, in their own words. In-depth description and numerous quotes from Perez's interviewees make this book a useful resource for students and scholars of immigration and education, as well as for general readers looking for first-person stories of immigration.

Learning a New Land; Immigrant Students in American Society
Carola Suarez-Orozco, Marcelo Suarez-Orozco, Irina Todorova
One child in five in America is the child of immigrants, and their numbers increase each year. Very few will return to the country they barely remember. Who are they, and what America do they know?

Based on an extraordinary interdisciplinary study that followed 400 newly arrived children from the Caribbean, China, Central America, and Mexico for five years, this book provides a compelling account of the lives, dreams, and frustrations of these youngest immigrants. Richly told portraits of high and low achievers are packed with unexpected ironies. When they arrive, most children are full of optimism and a respect for education. But poor neighborhoods and dull-often dangerous-schools can corrode hopes. The vast majority learn English, but it is the English of video games and the neighborhood, not that of standardized tests.

Making the Mexican Diabetic: Race, Science, and the Genetics of Inequality
Michael Montoya
This innovative ethnographic study animates the racial politics that underlie genomic research into type 2 diabetes, one of the most widespread chronic diseases and one that affects ethnic groups disproportionately. Michael J. Montoya follows blood donations from “Mexican-American” donors to laboratories that are searching out genetic contributions to diabetes. His analysis lays bare the politics and ethics of the research process, addressing the implicit contradiction of undertaking genetic research that reinscribes race’s importance even as it is being demonstrated to have little scientific validity. In placing DNA sampling, processing, data set sharing, and carefully crafted science into a broader social context, Making the Mexican Diabetic underscores the implications of geneticizing disease while illuminating the significance of type 2 diabetes research in American life.

Tia Lola series
Julia Alvarez
“When I was ten, we moved to the United States. I left all those aunts behind on the island, but I carried memories of them in my head. Years later, I wanted to write those memories down. I rolled up all those remembered aunts into one aunt. I thought about a lot of the questions I was asking myself when we settled down in this country. What does it mean to come from another country and become an American? What does it mean if you are born here but your parents or grandparents came from somewhere else? I wrote these Tía Lola books mostly to see if I could try to answer some of these questions, but also because I wanted to bring all those aunts back from the dusty past so that they could become a part of the lives of all my readers.” – Julia Alvarez

The Red Umbrella
Christine Diaz Gonzalez
The Red Umbrella is the moving tale of a 14-year-old girl's journey from Cuba to America as part of Operation Pedro Pan—an organized exodus of more than 14,000 unaccompanied children, whose parents sent them away to escape Fidel Castro's revolution. In 1961, two years after the Communist revolution, Lucía Álvarez still leads a carefree life, dreaming of parties and her first crush. But when the soldiers come to her sleepy Cuban town, everything begins to change. Freedoms are stripped away and as the revolution's impact becomes more oppressive, Lucía's parents make the heart-wrenching decision to send her and her little brother to the United States—on their own.

Help Wanted: Short Stories
Gary Soto
With real wit and heart, Gary Soto takes readers into the lives of young people in ten funny, heartbreaking tales. Meet Carolina, who writes to Miss Manners for help not just with etiquette but with bigger messes in her life; Javier, who knows the stories his friend Veronica tells him are lies, but can't find a way to prove it--and many other kids, each caught up in the difficulties of figuring out what it means to be alive.

Cool Salsa: Bilingual Poems about Growing Up Latino in the U.S.
edited by Lori Carlson
Growing up Latino in America means speaking two languages, living two lives, learning the rules of two cultures. Cool Salsa celebrates the tones, rhythms, sounds, and experiences of that double life. Here are poems about families and parties, insults and sad memories, hot dogs and mangos, the sweet syllables of Spanish and the snag-toothed traps of English. Here is the glory, and pain, of being Latino American.

The Indigo Notebook
Laura Resau
Zeeta's life with her free-spirited mother, Layla, is anything but normal. Every year Layla picks another country she wants to live in. This summer they’re in Ecuador, and Zeeta is determined to convince her mother to settle down. Zeeta makes friends with vendors at the town market and begs them to think of upstanding, “normal” men to set up with Layla. There, Zeeta meets Wendell. She learns that he was born nearby, but adopted by an American family. His one wish is to find his birth parents, and Zeeta agrees to help him. But when Wendell’s biological father turns out to be involved in something very dangerous, Zeeta wonders whether she’ll ever get the chance to tell her mom how she really feels—or to enjoy her deepening feelings for Wendell.

Harvest of Empire: A history of Latinos in America
Juan González
The first new edition in ten years of this important study of Latinos in U.S. history, Harvest of Empire spans five centuries-from the first New World colonies to the first decade of the new millennium. Latinos are now the largest minority group in the United States, and their impact on American popular culture-from food to entertainment to literature-is greater than ever. Featuring family portraits of real- life immigrant Latino pioneers, as well as accounts of the events and conditions that compelled them to leave their homelands, Harvest of Empire is required reading for anyone wishing to understand the history and legacy of this increasingly influential group.

Native American focus

Bury My Heart at Wounded Knee: An Indian History of the American West
Dee Brown
The classic, eloquent, meticulously documented account of the systematic destruction of the American Indian during the second half of the nineteenth century. Using council records, autobiographies, and firsthand descriptions, Brown allows great chiefs and warriors of the Dakota, Ute, Sioux, Cheyenne, and other tribes to tell us in their own words of the series of battles, massacres, and broken treaties that finally left them and their people demoralized and decimated. A unique and disturbing narrative told with force and clarity, Bury My Heart at Wounded Knee changed forever our vision of how the West was won, and lost.

Racism in Indian Country
Dean Chavers
In the face of huge challenges, despite crushing social conditions, Indian people have survived. Racism in Indian Country exposes, for the first time, the degrading and inhuman treatment Indian people have had and continue to endure. This book provides numerous examples including the sterilization of thousands of Indian women without their consent, and the poor treatment Indians receive in our schools, resulting in the worst academic records and the highest dropout rate, 50 percent, of any ethnic group.

Trail of Tears: The Rise and Fall of the Cherokee Nation
John Ehle
One of the many ironies of U.S. government policy toward Indians in the early 1800s is that it persisted in removing to the West those who had most successfully adapted to European values. As whites encroached on Cherokee land, many Native leaders responded by educating their children, learning English, and developing plantations. Such a leader was Ridge, who had fought with Andrew Jackson against the British. As he and other Cherokee leaders grappled with the issue of moving, the land-hungry Georgia legislatiors, with the aid of Jackson, succeeded in ousting the Cherokee from their land, forcing them to make the arduous journey West on the infamous "Trail of Tears." (Library Journal)

Through Indian Eyes: The Untold Story of Native American Peoples
Seldom have Native American culture and history been recreated with the immediacy and panoramic scope given by this breathtakingly illustrated volume. Beginning with the waves of Asian migrants to North America at the end of the last ice age, and extending to recent, hard-won victories in treaty enforcement and repatriation of sacred objects, it places special emphasis on Native Americans' daily experience and worldviews as expressed in customs, rituals, art, myths, religion, architecture.
Events that resonate deep in the consciousness of Native Americans, such as General John Sullivan's scorched-earth campaign through Seneca country in 1779 on orders from George Washington, and the Pueblo Indians' successful revolt in 1680 against the Spanish, punctuate a crisply written narrative crammed with hundreds of dramatic color photographs, paintings, artifacts, maps, insets. [Publishers Weekly]

White focus

A Member of the Club
Lawrence Otis Graham
Informed and driven by his experience as an upper-middle-class African American who lives/works in a predominately white environment, provocative Graham offers a unique perspective on the subject of race. An uncompromising work that will challenge the mindset of every reader, this is a searching book of essays ranging from examining life as a black Princetonian, corporate lawyer to exploring life as a black busboy at an all white country-club. From New York magazine cover stories to such new essays as "I Never Dated a White Girl" and "My Dinner with Mister Charlie: A Black Man's Undercover Guide to Dining with Dignity at Ten Top New York Restaurants," Graham challenges racial prejudice among White Americans while demanding greater accountability and self-determination from his peers in black America.

How the Irish Became White
Noel Ignatiev
Ignatiev traces the tattered history of Irish and African-American relations, revealing how the Irish used labor unions, the Catholic Church and the Democratic party to succeed in American. He uncovers the roots of conflict between Irish-Americans and African-Americans and draws a powerful connection between the embracing of white supremacy and Irish "success" in 19th century American society.

White Privilege
Paula Rothenberg, editor
Studies of racism often focus on its devastating effects on the victims of prejudice. But no discussion of race is complete without exploring the other side--the ways in which some people or groups actually benefit, deliberately or inadvertently, from racial bias. This is the subject of Paula Rothenberg's groundbreaking anthology. The new edition of White Privilege once again challenges readers to explore ideas for using the power and the concept of white privilege to help combat racism in their own lives, and includes key essays and articles by Peggy McIntosh, Richard Dyer, bell hooks, Robert Jensen, Allan G. Johnson, and others.

Race: How Blacks & Whites Think & Feel About the American Obsession
Studs Terkel
A seminal, candid book, exploring how ordinary Americans see race and what has gone on since the 1960s. From the jacket: “How do attitudes towards race affect their daily lives, their relations to their fellow Americans, their images of themselves? He brings out the full complexity of the thoughts and emotions of both blacks and whites, uncovering a fascinating narrative of changing opinions.”

Silent Racism: How Well-Meaning White People Perpetuate the Racial Divide
Barbara Trepagnier
Persuasively demonstrates that silent racism – racism by people who classify themselves as not racist – is instrumental in the production of institutional racism. Trepagnier argues that heightened race awareness is more important in changing racial inequality than judging whether individuals are racist. Offering a fresh approach, Silent Racism is an essential resource for teaching and thinking about racism in the twenty-first century.


We Can't Teach What We Don't Know: White Teachers, Multiracial Schools
Gary R. Howard
Once again, in this expanded Second Edition, Gary Howard outlines what good teachers know, what they do, and how they embrace culturally responsive teaching. Howard brings his book up to date with a new introduction and a new chapter that speak directly to current issues such as closing the achievement gap, and to recent legislation such as No Child Left Behind. With our nation’s student population becoming ever more diverse, and teachers remaining largely White, this book continues to facilitate and deepen the discussion of race and social justice in education.

The Dreamkeepers: Successful Teachers of African American Children
Gloria Ladson-Billings
This new edition of the critically acclaimed book revisits the eight teachers who were profiled in the first edition and introduces us to new teachers who are current exemplars of good teaching. She shows that culturally relevant teaching is not a matter of race, gender, or teaching style. What matters most is a teacher's efforts to work with the unique strengths a child brings to the classroom. This brilliant mixture of scholarship and storytelling challenges us to envision intellectually rigorous and culturally relevant classrooms that have the power to improve the lives of not just African American students, but all children. This new edition also includes questions for reflection.

Teaching What Really Happened
James W. Loewen
How did people get here? Why did Europe win? Why Did the South Secede? In Teaching What Really Happened, Loewen goes beyond the usual textbook-dominated viewpoints to illuminate a wealth of intriguing, often hidden facts about America's past. Calling for a new way to teach history, this book will help teachers move beyond traditional textbooks to tackle difficult but important topics like conflicts with Native Americans, slavery, and race relations.

Everyday Anti-Racism: Getting Real about Race in School
Mica Pollack, editor
Which acts by educators are "racist" and which are "antiracist"? How can an educator constructively discuss complex issues of race with students and colleagues? Leading educators deal with the most challenging questions about race in school, describing concrete ways to analyze classroom interactions that may or may not be "racial," deal with racial inequality and "diversity". Questions following each essay prompt readers to examine and discuss everyday issues of race and opportunity in their own classrooms and schools.

Courageous Conversations About Race
Glenn Singleton & Curtis W. Linton, editors
"Talking about race and its effect on academic achievement remains one of the most elusive conversations today. In their new book, Singleton and Linton help educators understand and engage in the discourse around race that affects the success of any curriculum, instructional methodology, or program implementation. The book's exercises and prompts assists school and district leadership teams in articulating those innate behaviors, beliefs, and attitudes that impair our ability to be effective in closing the racial achievement gap. I am encouraged to know that educators will be empowered and supported as we develop our personal capacity to address one of the most crucial elements of our society: the education of our children." (Yvette M. Irving, Principal )



Certain Aspects of the History of Evanston and Its Public Schools from an African-American Perspective. Grice, Patricia, Lloyd W. Shepard, and Kenneth A. Whitney. Evanston, IL: Ad-Hoc Committee on African-American History, 1992.

Perspectives in Black and White: Conflict and Accommodation in the Racially Diverse City of Evanston, Illinois. Miles, Michael Frank.  Evanston, IL: Michael Frank Miles, 2008.

 A Place We Can Call Our Home: The Emerging Black Community Circa 1850-1930. Robinson, Jr., Morris (Dino) E. Evanston, IL: Robinson Communication Services, 1996.

Through the Eyes of Us: True Experiences of Lives and History Shared by Evanston’s African-American Community. Robinson, Jr., Morris (Dino) E. Evanston, IL:  Robinson Communication Services, 1998.

Conversations with Blacks in Evanston, Illinois: An Evaluation of African-American Progress in this Suburb of Chicago. Williams, George W. Baltimore, MD: American Literary Press, Inc., 1998.


Applied Research Center
ARC is a racial justice think tank using media, research, and activism to promote solutions. Our mission is to popularize racial justice and prepare people to fight for it.

 Arts Engine
Arts Engine supports, produces, and distributes independent media to encourage critical consideration of pressing social issues. Their annual film festival highlights some of the best short films, in hopes of sparking debate and action.

Center for Social Inclusion
The Center for Social Inclusion identifies causes of racial inequity growing out of public policy. CSI develops tools, strategies and leadership for dismantling what we call structural racism, the many unintentional ways in which race-neutral decisions about how to allocate resources and opportunities exclude communities of color and weaken our society as a whole.

Everyday Democracy
A national leader in the field of civic participation and community change, Everyday Democracy helps people of different backgrounds and views talk and work together to solve problems and create communities that work for everyone. We place particular emphasis on the connection between complex public issues and structural racism. Issues addressed include: poverty and economic development; education reform; racial equity; early childhood development; police-community relations; youth and neighborhood concerns.

Institute on Race & Poverty
The Institute on Race and Poverty (IRP) investigates the ways that policies and practices disproportionately affect people of color and the disadvantaged. A core purpose for IRP’s work is to ensure that people have access to opportunity. Another is to help the places where people live develop in ways that both promote access to opportunity and help maintain regional stability.

Founded in 1909, the NAACP is the nation's oldest and largest civil rights organization. From the ballot box to the classroom, the thousands of dedicated workers, organizers, leaders and members who make up the NAACP continue to fight for social justice for all Americans.

National Association for Multicultural Education
NAME is a non-profit organization that advances and advocates for equity and social justice through multicultural education. They encourage proactively reframing public debate and impacting current and emerging policies in ways that advance social, political, economic and educational equity through advocacy, position papers, policy statements, etc. Also serves as a clearinghouse of resources about educational equity and social justice. Illinois Chapter: https://edocs.uis.edu/jherr3/www/illinoisNAME.htm)

National Indian Education Association
The National Indian Education Association is a membership-based organization committed to increasing educational excellence, opportunities and resources for American Indian, Alaska Native and Native Hawaiian students while protecting our cultural and linguistic traditions.

National MultiCultural Institute
The mission of the National MultiCultural Institute (NMCI) is to work with individuals, organizations, and communities to facilitate personal and systemic change in order to build an inclusive society that is strengthened and empowered by its diversity. Through the development of strategic initiatives, partnerships, and programs that promote an inclusive and just society,

The People's Institute for Survival and Beyond
The People’s Institute for Survival and Beyond (PISAB) is a national and international collective of anti-racist, multicultural community organizers and educators dedicated to building an effective movement for social transformation.

 Poverty and Race Research Action Council
The Poverty & Race Research Action Council (PRRAC) is a civil rights policy organization convened by major civil rights, civil liberties, and anti-poverty groups in 1989-90. PRRAC's primary mission is to help connect advocates with social scientists working on race and poverty issues, and to promote a research-based advocacy strategy on structural inequality issues.

Race: The Power of an Illusion
Materials, activities, resources to accompany your use of this PBS series.

Teaching Tolerance
Founded in 1991 by the Southern Poverty Law Center, Teaching Tolerance is dedicated to reducing prejudice, improving intergroup relations and supporting equitable school experiences for our nation's children. They provide free educational materials to teachers and other school practitioners in the U.S. and abroad. “Teaching Tolerance” magazine is sent at no cost to teachers, and contains practical ways to address equity issues at all grade levels. Scientific surveys demonstrate that our programs help students learn respect for differences and bolster teacher practice.


The Color of Fear (a brief excerpt)

How to Tell People They Sound Racist
Jay Smooth

How I Learned to Stop Worrying and Love Discussing Race
Jay Smooth

Race: The Power of an Illusion 
Our hope is that this series can help us all navigate through our myths and misconceptions about race, and scrutinize some of the assumptions we take for granted. In that sense, the real subject of the film is not so much race but the viewer, or more precisely, the notions about race we all hold. We hope this series can help clear away the biological underbrush and leave starkly visible the underlying social, economic, and political conditions that disproportionately channel advantages and opportunities to white people. Perhaps then we can shift the conversation from discussing diversity and respecting cultural difference to building a more just and equitable society. Larry Adelman, Executive Producer

TIM WISE ON WHITE PRIVILEGE: Racism, White Denial & the Costs of Inequality

The Feast of All Saints
Set in nineteenth-century New Orleans, the story depicts the gens de couleur libre, or the Free People of Colour, a dazzling yet damned class caught between the world of white privilege and black oppression.

For Us the Living: The Medgar Evers Story
This very earnest film begins and ends with Irene Cara's dramatic reading of Myrlie Evers' words. In between, patient viewers are rewarded with a moving portrait of a determined, dedicated, and doomed man whose life was spent in a noble cause.

Daughters of the Dust
At the turn of the century, West African slaves were brought to a small island near South Carolina to labor in the indigo trade. Isolated in the swampy atmosphere, the Gullah community was built based on ancient Yoruba traditions.




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