Anti-Racism at EHS
Over the summer of 2020, we’ve been actively listening to our students, former students, parents and guardians, and members of our community about the ways that Eagan High School has failed to serve our students of color.
We hear your voices through social media, in-person conversations, listening sessions, emails, surveys, and phone calls. We are proud of our students and families for their care and involvement in efforts to address racism.
As a predominantly white school, with a predominantly white faculty and staff, in a system created to support whiteness, we need to address the needs and concerns and respond to our students of color and their families.
We are proud to have been a positive educational experience for so many students over the years, but we have work to do to be a school to provide that experience for each and every one of our EHS students.
So, we deeply appreciate our community’s work so far in speaking and writing to us about how we can repair the damage, create a space for healing, and not only make our school less racist, but actively antiracist.
- EHS Antiracist Vision and Goals
- What is Antiracism?
- The Work So Far and Looking Forward
- Equity and Inclusion Advisory Council Planning
Eagan HS ANTIRACIST VISION AND GOALS
Eagan High School will become an antiracist school where our curriculum, relationships, culture, and policy work to dismantle racism in our school and empower students to dismantle racism after they leave our school.
EHS will value and build relationships with every one of our students, regardless of race, culture, sexuality, religion, gender identity, academic achievement, ability or ethnicity.
EHS will organize and participate in equity training for faculty and staff through professional development in the areas of antiracism, implicit bias, and inclusion. This training will be ongoing and persistent.
EHS will educate our students in order to create awareness of racist language and behavior among them.
EHS will educate staff and faculty how to better respond to racist language and behavior.
EHS will work with the District 196 curriculum leaders and our departments at Eagan HS in the process of auditing our curriculum for racist content and methods in every department.
EHS will examine our discipline system and replace policies that produce racial disparities with alternate systems (e.g. restorative justice, relationship building).
EHS will improve systems, structures, communications, and cultural expectations around access and enrollment in our honors and advanced classes for BIPOC and other underrepresented students.
EHS will revise and enhance one-to-one services (i.e. individual student interactions with individual staff members in each and every school space) to equalize access, build relationships, and improve support for BIPOC and other underrepresented and disenfranchised students.
EHS will communicate our antiracism goals and actions to our stakeholders.
“One who is expressing the idea that racial groups are equals and none needs developing, and is supporting policy that reduces racial inequity.” - Ibram X. Kendi
Why focus on race?
It should go without saying that each student is a unique individual who deserves to be treated as such. Our students' identities are formed at the intersection of their culture, ethnicity, gender, sexuality, families, languages, experiences, and race.
This antiracism work does not replace the work we need to do to better serve students who are marginalized in other ways. And it doesn't replace the work we've always done to best serve all our students. But to not name racism is to allow it to continue.
This is because racist power is intertwined with all aspects of American life, including public education. Consequently, we must confront it head on.
What is race?
Race, as we understand it in Western society, was constructed almost 600 years ago. It was constructed to justify slavery and to dehumanize people. It was not constructed as a way to name naturally occurring groups.
Or, as explained in the 2019 New York Times Op-Ed "How Italians Became White," "racial categories that people mistakenly view as matters of biology grow out of highly politicized myth making."
In other words, white people created race, placing themselves at the top of the racial hierarchy. These categories were created with no regard for the cultures, languages, experiences, or genetics of the racial groups that white people put lower on that hierarchy.
The tools of racist power are the same that created the idea of "race" - policy and ideas, politics and "academic" writing. Now, here we are, 600 years later, and racist power is very real and very present, an immensely dangerous and destructive force, both politically and culturally.
What is racism?
According to Ibram X. Kendi, National Book Award-winning author of Stamped from the Beginning: The Definitive History of Racist Ideas in America and founding director of the Boston University Center for Antiracist Research, racism is “a marriage of racist policies and racist ideas that produces and normalizes racial inequities" (20). A racist policy is one that “produces or sustains racial inequity between racial groups" (17), while racist ideas “suggest one racial group is inferior or superior to another racial group in any way" (20). A racist is, therefore, someone who “support[s] a racist policy through their actions or inaction or expressing a racist idea" (13).
Kendi, Ibram X. How To Be an Antiracist. One World, 2019.
What does it mean to be antiracist?
An antiracist, on the other hand, understands that one racial group can be different from another in obvious manifestations of culture, but cannot be better or worse, right or wrong, relative to another racial group. All racial groups are equal in this way because they are comprised of individuals, and all individuals are equally human. This understanding leads to an inevitable conclusion that lies at the heart of all antiracist initiatives: that racist policies, not intrinsic qualities, are the causes of racial inequity. An antiracist is, therefore, someone dedicated to identifying and dismantling racist policies. For example, an antiracist looks at housing inequities between racial groups and understands that the divergent percentages of home ownership between racial groups derive directly from policy decisions (legal and de facto) at the local, state, and federal levels.
For an antiracist, silence supports racist ideas and inaction supports racist policy. In other words, there is no middle ground between racism and antiracism. As Kendi explains, “There is no such thing as a non-racist or race-neutral policy. Every policy in every institution in every community in every nation is producing or sustaining either racial inequity or equity between racial groups" (17-18).
For an antiracist, all racial groups are equal and none require development. No racial group is the standard against which another racial group measures itself. No racial group requires instruction or integration. Antiracism rejects the entire concept of hierarchies (cultural, behavioral, biological, etc.) among racial groups.
For an antiracist, to overthrow racism is to overthrow racist power: “The root problem . . . has always been the self-interest of racist power. Powerful economic, political, and cultural self-interest . . . has been behind racist policies" (42). The history of racism is the history of asserting and maintaining power. Race, a useful fiction, was created for this purpose. It continues to be used as such: to rationalize and secure unequal opportunity. As Kendi notes, “The United States is a racist nation because its policymakers and policies have been racist from the beginning” (222).
All the same, if racist policies can be identified, if we can trace their effects, then we can also dismantle them. Antiracism is a fundamentally hopeful perspective, one focused on concrete action, on policy change that creates equity.
Kendi, Ibram X. How To Be an Antiracist. One World, 2019.
What does that mean for us?
It means that we must be prepared to admit that Eagan High School creates, institutionalizes, and perpetuates racial inequities, whether they are academic, social, cultural, co-curricular, or otherwise. It means that we must acknowledge that students of color have been and continue to be marginalized in our classrooms and hallways, our stairwells, our gyms, our athletic fields, our administrative offices, and our grounds. It means, ultimately, that we are ready to admit our failures, regardless of intention, and to begin the hard but necessary work of fixing them.
It means that we, as a school, must interrogate our culture, curriculum, and policies to identify and dismantle racist policies.
This section of the EHS website serves as public notification of the work we are doing, and will continue to do, to root out racist power and racial inequities at Eagan High School. Furthermore, it acts as a permanent resource list so you can learn with us about the history and contemporary reality of racism in order to become antiracist.
Why haven’t I heard about this before this summer?Since the Civil Rights movement of the 60s, the idea that we "defeated racism" has pervaded American life. This also means that explicit racist ideas are generally socially unacceptable, especially in the culture of "progressive" places like Minnesota. This mindset masks the truth. So if you have previously been unaware of racism at Eagan High School, you are not alone. Racist ideas and racist policy are ever-present but often hidden to those protected from it.
*EHS has hired a full-time Student Support Specialist to work specifically with our students of color. Mr. Harry Sonie is a District 196 graduate who received his Bachelor's degree from Augsburg University, Mpls. in Communication Studies. He has worked as an Academic/Behavior Support Specialist at Falcon Ridge Middle School and as a basketball coach. His previous field was in job and career recruiting prior to that time. His position as a Student Support Specialist is a new position at EHS. His work will focus on building relationships with students of color as well as their parents/guardians. He will coordinate his work with our counselors, teachers, principals and coaches. He will also be working with the Cultural Family Advocates - Mr. Rick Stanton, Mr. Faisal Madar, Ms. Veronica Ramos and Ms. Lisa Turgeon. He will assist the students with academic and behavior support, problem solving and goal setting as a focus on achieving success and personal growth as they plan for the future. He is at Eagan HS every day and can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org or by calling 651-683-6977.
*Professional Development Update:
-Beginning the second week of school, the faculty and staff will participate in weekly listening and discussion circles among small-group faculty cohorts (Click here for example video of these listening circles in action)
-Nov. 4: EHS Faculty and Staff will participate in Implicit Bias training with equity trainer Michael Walker of Minneapolis Public Schools. Michael Walker also worked with the EHS Principals’ Team mid-August. He will continue to work with the EHS Principals’ Team as well as the faculty and staff several more times.
Initially, the Equity and Inclusion Advisory Council would be a council of students, graduates, and parents who provide recommendations and feedback on school decisions and help shape the direction of antiracism efforts. This council will be an advisory group at EHS, with discussions focusing on the following:
- School culture
- School policies (attendance, discipline, etc.)
- Professional development efforts for faculty and staff
- Curriculum review (offering feedback on standards as applied to EHS)
The council will have no more than 15 members and will meet each month via Zoom in the evening. There will be EHS faculty/staff who are additional participants on this council.
Racism in Minnesota
This section offers articles, books, and videos that help build an understanding of why and how Minneapolis became a flashpoint for a global uprising against anti-Blackness and state violence.
By understanding the rich legacy of Black struggle in the Twin Cities, we can better understand the roots of what we are presently living through. Moreover, we can learn from the successes and setbacks of those that came before us as we struggle for the future we want to live in. If you wish to learn more, please check out Adam Bledsoe's Minneapolis Uprising Syllabus.
Report of the Metro Gang Strike Force Review Panel – Andrew Luger and John Engelhof
“Drug Enforcement in Minority Communities: The Minneapolis Police Department” – Police Executive Research Forum/National Institute of Justice
History of Black Minnesota
“Why this started in Minneapolis” – Sarah Holder
Slavery’s Reach: Southern Slaveholders in the North Star State – Christopher Lehman
“Race and Segregation in St. Paul’s Public Schools, 1846-69” – William Green
“Minnesota’s Long Road to BLACK SUFFRAGE 1849-1868” – William Green
“The Black Community in Territorial St. Anthony: A Memoir” – Emily O. Goodridge Grey and Patricia C. Harpole
The Negro in Minnesota – Earl Spangler
African Americans in Minnesota – David Vassar Taylor
Minneapolis in the Twentieth Century: The Growth of an American City – Iric Nathanson
“When the Klan Came to Minnesota” – Kay Johnson
Overcoming: The Autobiography of W. Harry Davis – W. Harry Davis
“Old Southside Minneapolis and the 35W Dividing Line” – Denise Pike
Twin Cities Black Politics
“St. Paul’s Brotherhood of Sleeping Car Porters, 1925-1941” – Alisha Volante
“Labor, Politics, and American Identity in Minneapolis, 1930-50” – Jennifer Delton
For a Moment We Had the Way – Rolland Robinson
“Nerve Juice” and the Ivory Tower Confrontation in Minnesota: The True Story of the Morrill Hall Takeover (at the University of Minnesota) – Marie Braddock Williams, Rose Freeman Massey, Horace Huntley
Somalis in Minnesota – Ahmed Yusuf
21 Racial Microaggressions You Hear on a Daily Basis, by Heben Nigatu
Climbing the White Escalator, by Betsy Leondar-Wright
Explaining White Privilege To A Broke White Person, by Gina Crosley-Corcoran
Guide to Allyship, Created by Amélie Lamont
For Our White Friends Desiring to Be Allies by Courtney Ariel
It’s Not Just the South: Here’s How Everyone Can Resist White Supremacy, by Sarah van Gelder
White Fragility, by Robin DiAngelo
Institutionalized Racism: A Syllabus A list of free articles on the context/history of institutionalized racism available through JSTOR
Making America White Again, by Toni Morrison
Understanding the Racial Wealth Gap, by Amy Traub, Laura Sullivan, Tatjana Mescheded, & Tom Shapiro
What White Children Need to Know About Race, by Ali Michael and Elenora Bartoli
White Privilege: Unpacking the Invisible Knapsack, by Peggy McIntosh
My President Was Black, by Ta-Nehisi Coates
Who Gets to Be Afraid in America?, by Ibram X Kendi
The Injustice of This Moment Is not an ‘Aberration,’ Michelle Alexander
People of colour have to ‘code-switch’ to fit in with white norms by Natalie Morris
The Case for Reparations by Ta-Nehisi Coates
On Being White and Other Lies by James Baldwin
“America’s Racial Contract Is Killing Us” by Adam Serwer
The 1619 Project (all the articles) The New York Times Magazine
The Combahee River Collective Statement Statement on the foundations of Black Feminism
What's Race Got to Do With ______? a series of articles by Sojourners Magazine on the interconnectedness of humanity and the ways race converges with gender, eco-justice, sexuality, leadership, technology and more.
Articles specific to our current context:
“Where do I donate? Why is the uprising violent? Should I go protest?” by Courtney Martin (June 1, 2020)
“The Death of George Floyd, In Context,” by Jelani Cobb
“Of Course There Are Protests. The State Is Failing Black People,” by Keeanga-Yamahtta Taylor
“This Is How Loved Ones Want Us To Remember George Floyd,” by Alisha Ebrahimji
“You shouldn’t need a Harvard degree to survive birdwatching while black,” by Samuel Getachew, a 17-year-old and the 2019 Oakland youth poet laureate
“How to Make This Moment the Turning Point for Real Change,” by Barack Obama
Your Black Colleagues May Look Like They’re Okay — Chances Are They’re Not by Danielle Cadet
“I Was The Mayor Of Minneapolis And I Know Our Cops Have A Problem,” by R.T. Rybak
“Don’t understand the protests? What you’re seeing is people pushed to the edge,” by Kareem Abdul-Jabbar in Los Angeles Times
“I’m Black. My Mom is White. This Is The Talk We Had To Have About George Floyd’s Killing,” by Kimberly J. Miller
Defund the Police? Here’s what that really means. by Christy Lopez
Robin DiAngelo: How 'white fragility' supports racism and how whites can stop it interview with Sandee LaMotte
How To Be An Antiracist by Dr. Ibram X. Kendi
Just Mercy by Bryan Stevenson
Sister Outsider by Audre Lorde
Why Are All The Black Kids Sitting Together In The Cafeteria? And Other Conversations About Race by Beverly Daniel Tatum
So You Want to Talk About Race by Ijeoma Oluo
A Spectacular Secret: Lynching in American Life and Literature by Jacqueline Goldsby
The New Jim Crow: Mass Incarceration in the Age of Colorblindness by Michelle Alexander
Born a Crime: Stories from a South African Childhood by Trevor Noah
The Warmth of Other Suns by Isabel Wilkerson
Their Eyes Were Watching God by Zora Neale Hurston
This Bridge Called My Back: Writings by Radical Women of Color by Cherríe Moraga
White Fragility: Why It's So Hard for White People to Talk About Racism by Robin DiAngelo, PhD
Biased by Dr. Jennifer Eberhardt
Raising White Kids: Bringing Up Children In A Racially Unjust America by Jennifer Harvey
Waking Up White by Debby Irving
Citizen: An American Lyric by Claudia Rankine
Brutal Imagination by Cornelius Eady
They Were Her Property by Stephanie E. Jones-Rogers
Austin Channing Brown
Me and White Supremacy by Layla F. Saad
Between the World and Me by Ta-Nehisi Coates
The Underground Railroad by Colson Whitehead
The Nickel Boys by Colson Whitehead
The Fire Next Time by James Baldwin
Whistling Vivaldi: How Stereotypes Affect Us and What We Can Do by Claude M. Steele
West Indian Immigrants:: A Black Success Story? by Suzanne Model
The Condemnation of Blackness: Race, Crime, and the Making of Modern Urban America by Khalil Gibran Muhammad
The Negro Artist and the Racial Mountain by Langston Hughes
The Bluest Eye by Toni Morrison
The Blacker the Berry by Wallace Thurman
The Autobiography of Malcolm X by Malcolm X and Alex Haley
How We Get Free: Black Feminism and the Combahee River Collective Edited by Keeanga-Yamahtta Taylor
Well-Read Black Girl: Finding Our Stories, Discovering Ourselves Edited by Glory Edim
Race for Profit: How Banks and the Real Estate Industry Undermined Black Homeownership by Keeanga-Yamahtta Taylor
A Terrible Thing To Waste: Environmental Racism And Its Assault On The American Mind by Harriet A. Washington
Automating Inequality: How High-Tech Tools Profile, Police and Punish the Poor by Virginia Eubanks
The End of Policing by Alex S. Vitale
Blackballed: The Black Vote and U.S. Democracy by Darryl Pinckney
Medical Bondage: Race, Gender, and the Origins of American Gynecology by Deirdre Cooper Owens
Chokehold: Policing Black Men by Paul Butler
The Color of Compromise by Jemar Tisby
Conversations in Black edited by Ed Gordon
Cole, R. (2010). The story of Ruby Bridges. New York, NY: Scholastic Paperbacks Derolf, S. (2014). The crayon box that talked. New York, NY: Random House for Young Readers.
Evans, S. (2016). We march. New York, NY: Square Fish. Giovanni, N. (2007). Rosa. New York, NY: Square Fish.
Greenfield, E. (1986). Honey, I love and other love poems. New York, NY: HarperCollins Publishers.
Greenfield, E. (1996). Grandpa’s face. New York, NY: Puffin Books.
Hart, G. (2014). DK eyewitness books: Ancient Egypt. New York, NY: DK Children.
Hassig, S.M. (1997). Cultures of the world: Somalia. New York, NY: Cavendish Square Publishing.
Isadora, R. (1994). At the crossroads. New York, NY: Greenwillow Books.
Knight, M.B. (2002). Africa is not a country. Minneapolis, MN: Millbrook Press.
Krebs, L. (2008). We’re sailing down the Nile. Cambridge, MA: Barefoot Books.
Kroll, V.L. (1993). Africa brothers and sisters. New York, NY: Simon & Schuster Children's Publishing.
Levine, E. (2007). Henry’s freedom box: A true story from the Underground Railroad. New York, NY: Scholastic Press.
Levy, D. (2013). We shall overcome: The story of a song. New York, NY: Jump At The Sun.
Mace, V. (2008). National Geographic Countries of the World: South Africa.
McQuinn, A. (2006). Lola at the library. Watertown, MA: Charlesbridge.
Miller, J.P. (2005). We all sing with the same voice. New York, NY: HarperCollins
Moore, J.R. (2002). The story of Martin Luther King Jr. Nashville, TN: Candy Cane Press.
Nelson, K. (2013). Mandela. New York, NY: Katherine Tegen Books.
O’Brien, A. (1994). My name is Johari. Northborough, MA: Newbridge Educational Pub
Otoshi,K. (2008). One. Mill Valley, CA: KO Kids Books.
Ramsey, C.A. & Strauss, G. (2010). Ruth and the green book. Minneapolis, MN: Carolrhoda Books.
Rappaport, D. (2007). Martin’s Big Words. New York, NY: Hyperion.
Ringgold, F. (2003). If a bus could talk: The story of Rosa Parks. New York, NY:Aladdin.=
Schermbrucker, R. (1991). Charlie’s house. New York, NY: Viking Juvenile.
Tonatiuh, D. (2014). Separate is never equal: Sylvia Mendez and her family’s fight for desegregation. New York, NY: Harry N. Abrams
Winter, J. (1992). Follow the drinking gourd. New York, NY: Dragonfly Books. Woodson, J. (2012). Each kindness. New York, NY: Nancy Paulsen Books.
Ideas and Resources
75 Things White People Can Do for Racial Justice by Corinne Shutack
Anti-racism Resources (a google doc)
Scaffolded Anti-Racism Resources (a google doc)
Code Switch, hosted by journalists Gene Demby and Shereen Marisol Meraji
Black Like Me, host Dr. Alex Gee
Scene on Radio – Seeing White Series, host John Biewen and collaborator Chenjerai Kumanyika
TED Radio Hour – Mary Bassett: How Does Racism Affect Your Health? host Guy Raz speaks with Dr. Mary T. Bassett, Director of the FXB Center for Health and Human Rights at Harvard University
Here & Now – Without Slavery, Would The U.S. Be The Leading Economic Power? host Jeremy Hobson and author Edward Baptist
NPR Morning Edition – You Cannot Divorce Race From Immigration journalist Rachel Martin talks to Pulitzer Prize-winning journalist Jose Antonio Vargas
Pod Save the People, Activism. Social Justice. Culture. Politics. On Pod Save the People, organizer and activist DeRay Mckesson
Floodlines from The Atlantic. An audio documentary about the aftermath of Hurricane Katrina, Floodlines is told from the perspective of four New Orleanians still living with the consequences of governmental neglect. As COVID-19 disproportionately infects and kills Americans of color, the story feels especially relevant. "As a person of color, you always have it in the back of your mind that the government really doesn't care about you," said self-described Katrina overcomer Alice Craft-Kerney.
1619 from The New York Times."In August of 1619, a ship carrying more than 20 enslaved Africans arrived in the English colony of Virginia. America was not yet America, but this was the moment it began." Hosted by recent Pulitzer Prize winner Nikole Hannah-Jones, the 1619 audio series chronicles how black people have been central to building American democracy, music, wealth and more.
Intersectionality Matters! from The African American Policy Forum. Hosted by Kimberlé Crenshaw, a leading critical race theorist who coined the term "intersectionality," this podcast brings the academic term to life. Each episode brings together lively political organizers, journalists and writers. This recent episode on COVID-19 in prisons and other areas of confinement is a must-listen.
Throughline from NPR. Every week at Throughline, our pals Rund Abdelfatah and Ramtin Arablouei "go back in time to understand the present." To understand the history of systemic racism in America, we recommend "American Police," "Mass Incarceration" and "Milliken v. Bradley."
Still Processing, a New York Times culture podcast with Jenna Wortham and Wesley Morrison
Jemele Hill is Unbothered, a podcast with award-winning journalist Jemele Hill
Hear To Slay, “the black feminist podcast of your dreams,” with Roxane Gay and Tressie McMillan Cottom
The Appeal, a podcast on criminal justice reform hosted by Adam Johnson
Justice In America, a podcast by Josie Duffy Rice and Clint Smith on criminal justice reform
Brené Brown with Ibram X. Kendi, a podcast episode on antiracism
This is Us, Dr. Eddie Glaude explains why blaming current racial tensions on Donald Trump misses the point. (3 minutes)
Racism is Real, A split-screen video depicting the differential in the white and black lived experience. (3 minutes)
Confronting ‘intergroup anxiety’: Can you try too hard to be fair? Explores why we may get tongue tied and blunder when we encounter people from groups unfamiliar to us. (5 minutes)
CBS News Analysis: 50 states, 50 different ways of teaching America’s past, Ibram X. Kendi reviews current history curriculum production and use across the U.S. (5 minutes)
The Disturbing History of the Suburbs, An “Adam Ruins Everything” episode that quickly and humorously educates how redlining came to be. (6 minutes)
What Kind of Asian Are You? Humorous two minute YouTube video that illustrates the utter silliness of the way many white Americans interact with Asian Americans. (2 minutes)
White Bred, Excellent quick intro to how white supremacy shapes white lives and perception. (5 minutes)
What Would You Do: Bicycle Thief Episode? ABC’s popular show explores the impact of racial and gender bias and prejudice at a family friendly park. Before this video, would you have anticipated this differential treatment?
Tyler Merrit Project: Before You Call (3 minutes)
I Didn't Tell You, Ever wonder what a day in the life of a person of color is like? Listen to this poem, written and spoken by Norma Johnson. (7 minutes)
New York Times Op-Docs on Race, Multiple videos with a range of racial and ethnic perspectives on the lived experience of racism in the US. (each video about 6 minutes)
https://www.raceforward.org/videos/systemic-racism Short videos on what systemic racism is
Getting Real about Education: A Conversation Short videos of conversations with Black parents, teachers, and students around discipline, parent involvement, and representation.
How I Learned to Stop Worrying and Love Discussing Race, TEDx talk by Jay Smooth that suggests a new way to think about receiving feedback on our racial blindspots. (12 minutes)
Finding Myself in the Story of Race a TEDx talk by Debby Irving, the author of Waking Up White, about her journey in understanding race and racism. (15 minutes)
What Being Hispanic and Latinx Means in the United States, Fernanda Ponce shares what she’s learning about the misunderstanding and related mistreatment of the incredibly diverse ethnic category people in U.S. call Hispanic. (12 minutes)
Indigenous People React to Indigenous Representation in Film And TV, Conversation with a diverse range of Indigenous people by FBE about media depictions of Indigenous people, Columbus day, and Indigenous identity. (15 minutes)
How to deconstruct racism, one headline at a time, TED Talk by Baratunde Thurston that explores patterns revealing our racist framing, language, and behaviors. (10 minutes)
The urgency of intersectionality, TED Talk by Kimberlé Crenshaw that asks us to see the ways Black women have been invisibilized in the law and in media. (19 minutes)
The danger of a single story, TED Talk by Chimamanda Adiche, offers insight to the phenomenon of using small bits of information to imagine who a person is. (18 minutes)
Racism Has A Cost for Everyone: TED Talk by Heather McGhee, looks at the notion that my liberation is bound in yours. This is not a feel good statement but a reality when it comes to how racism impacts policy, budgets, and prevents us from achieving a society that works for us all
How to overcome our biases? Walk boldly toward them, TED Talk by Vernā Myers, encourages work vigorously to counter balance bias by connecting with and learning about and from the groups we fear. (19 minutes)
Hip hop, grit, and academic success, TEDx Talk by Dr. Bettina Love, explains how students steeped in Hip Hop culture, often seen as deficient, actually bring the very characteristics deemed necessary for 21st century success. (15 minutes)
Sit on the Couch
Just Mercy Free to watch for the month of June, this 2019 film about Bryan Stevenson and the work of the Equal Justice Initiative portrays racism in our society and the justice system.
When They See Us, Four-part Netflix series by Ava DuVernay about the wrongful incarceration and ultimate exoneration of the “Central Park Five.” (four 1+ hour episodes)
13th, Netflix documentary by Ava DuVernay about the connection between US Slavery and the present day mass incarceration system. (1 hour 40 minutes)
Fruitvale Station, a film with Michael B. Jordan about the killing of Oscar Grant (1 hour 25 minutes)
I Am Not Your Negro Narrated by the words of James Baldwin with the voice of Samuel L. Jackson, I Am Not Your Negro connects the Civil Rights Movement to Black Lives Matter. Although Baldwin died nearly 30 years before the film's release, his observations about racial conflict are as incisive today as they were when he made them. (1 hour 33 minutes)
Whose Streets? The 2014 killing of 18-year-old Michael Brown by police in Ferguson, Mo. was one of the deaths that sparked the Black Lives Matter movement. Frustrated by media coverage of unrest in Ferguson, co-directors Sabaah Folayan and Damon Davis documented how locals felt about police in riot gear filling their neighborhoods with tear gas. As one resident says, "They don't tell you the fact that the police showed up to a peaceful candlelight vigil...and boxed them in, and forced them onto a QuikTrip lot." (1 hour 42 minutes)
LA 92 LA 92 is about the Los Angeles riots that occurred in response to the police beating of Rodney King. The film is entirely comprised of archival footage — no talking heads needed. It's chilling to watch the unrest of nearly 30 years ago, as young people still take to the streets and shout, "No justice, no peace." (1 hour 54 minutes)
Teach Us All Over 60 years after Brown v. Board of Education, American schools are still segregated. Teach Us All explains why that is — school choice, residential segregation, biased admissions processes — and talks to advocates working for change. Interspersing interviews from two Little Rock Nine members, the documentary asks how far we've really come. (1 hour 20 minutes)
Black America Since MLK: And Still I Rise In this two-part series, Henry Louis Gates, Jr. chronicles the last 50 years of black history through a personal lens. Released days after the 2016 election, some themes of the documentary took on a deeper meaning amid Donald Trump's win. "Think of the civil rights movement to the present as a second Reconstruction — a 50-year Reconstruction — that ended last night," Gates said in an interview with Salon. (4 episodes, 1 hour each)
Slavery by Another name, 90 minutes PBS documentary challenges the idea that slavery ended with the emancipation proclamation. (90 minutes)
Unnatural Causes, Seven part documentary by California Newsreel that explores the impact of racism on health and US healthcare. (4 hours total, episodes have variable lengths)
Birth of a White Nation, Keynote speech by legal scholar Jacqueline Battalora, offers a blow-by-blow description of the moment the idea of, and word for, "white" people entered U.S. legal code. (36 minutes)
In The White Man's Image PBS documentary about the Native American boarding school movement designed to “kill the Indian and save the man.” (56 minutes)
Race: The Power of an Illusion, Three-part, three-hour film by California Newsreel exploring the biology of skin color, the concept of assimilation, and the history of institutional racism. (three 1 hour episodes)
Jim Crow of the North - Full-Length Documentary Roots of racial disparities are seen through a new lens in this film that explores the origins of housing segregation in the Minneapolis area. But the story also illustrates how African-American families and leaders resisted this insidious practice, and how Black people built community — within and despite — the red lines that these restrictive covenants created. (58 minutes)
The Kalief Browder Story: This documentary recounts the story of Kalief Browder, a Bronx high school student who was imprisoned for three years, two of them in solitary confinement on Rikers Island, without being convicted of a crime. He was accused at 16 of stealing a backpack, and his family was unable to afford his bail, set at $3,000. (Netflix) (6 episodes, 45 minutes each)