If you are looking for new resources, we encourage you to take a look at our Racial Justice and Reparations Resources.
These six audio pieces are drawn from its foundational work on the consequences of the arrival of the first enslaved Africans in Virginia. The 1619 Project is also available as a book.
Listen to the 1619 Podcast
Hailed by Toni Morrison as “required reading,” a bold and personal literary exploration of America’s racial history by “the single best writer on the subject of race in the United States” (The New York Observer) Written as a letter to his son about the danger to Black lives and bodies in America. Very powerful.
A collection of interviews and conversations by journalists of color about race and culture. This podcast is not limited to Black/White issues.
Listen to the Code Switch Podcast
TED Talk about the impact of media and stereotypes on our perceptions of one another and the world.
Watch the Ted Talk
This autobiography includes essays, spirituals, and poems.
Access this book for free via Project Gutenberg
This episode on “The Longest, Shortest Time” podcast, interviews Dr. Brigitte Vittrup about how white parents can talk to their children about race and racism.
Listen to the podcast
In this podcast series from Scene on Radio, John Biewen and Dr. Chenjerai Kumanyika explore the history of ideas of race and whiteness in a 14-part series.
Listen to the series
In what has become a classic essay for anyone trying to understand the phenomenon of white privilege, Peggy McIntosh highlights how white people go through life unaware of the ways in which our society is constructed for them and their interests. It’s an eye-opening look at how Black people experience our society in ways different from those who are white and helps those who are white to be more aware of the oppressive experiences that Black people encounter regularly.
Read the article
A 2016 PBS documentary about the movement and the murder of leaders by the FBI and, among others, Chicago police.
Watch on PBS
This hour-long interview of Robin DiAngelo, author of White Fragility, by Evanston Township High School principal, Marcus Campbell, is a compelling discussion of white fragility- what it is, how to recognize it, and how to deal with it so that it will not hinder the necessary work of racial justice.
Watch the interview
Past Youth Director Maia Volk recommended this discussion of Beyonce’s exploration of racial oppression and inherited trauma in her album “Lemonade.” Hosted by Cole Cuchna.
This podcast, hosted by Shankar Vedantam, explores implicit bias, how it is measured, and its impact on society.
This interview took place in 2015 at the Chicago Humanities Festival
Watch the interview
This 2016 movie is about the couple whose conviction for violating Virginia’s laws against interracial marriage led to the Supreme Court decision invalidating the law and upholding the right to marry.
Available on Netflix and for rental on Amazon Prime
Krista Tippett interviews Resmaa Menakem, a therapist and trauma specialist, about the impact of systemic racism, described as “white body supremacy,” on our bodies and nervous systems, including both black and white people.
In this 2016 film, author James Baldwin discusses the history of race in the United States and his last, unfinished novel, Remember This House.
Available on Amazon Prime and other streaming platforms.
This 2021 movie is about two friends, one of whom is passing for white.
Available on Netflix.
Three-part documentary about the history and science of race. It explores how theories about Black inferiority have infiltrated our society and how policies towards the Black community have limited their upward mobility and ability to accumulate wealth.
*Beth Emet has a DVD available to borrow*
This documentary film illustrates how the treatment of Black people today perpetuates the racism and discrimination written into the 13th Amendment of the U.S. Constitution.
This documentary is available on Netflix and Youtube.
The extraordinary journey from the world of lynching and Jim Crow through the Black Muslim movement to the equality of all humanity is inspirational.
First published in 1952, an analysis of racism and the assumption of Black inferiority.
Deep analysis of the history of race in the United States and comparison to Nazi Germany and the caste system of India. See also The Warmth of Other Suns: The Epic Story of America’s Great Migration.
Poetry with images
PDF available here
This memoir alternates between the author’s story and that of his mother, who left an abusive environment in a Jewish home, embraced a black church and raised 12 black children. See also The Good Lord Bird, also by James McBride.
This discussion, published in 1963, of the problem of race in the United States is still highly relevant today. Well worth reading.
Profound book on shaping an anti-racist society.
Describes how Bryan Stevenson established the Equal Justice Initiative to help individuals on death row in Alabama. This book was also made into a movie staring Michael B. Jordan.
A memoir about the deaths of several young Black men to whom Ward was close.
Through unpacking the use of the N word throughout history, Asim argues that the slur helps keep black people at the bottom of America’s socioeconomic ladder. Yet, he goes a step further to prove that there is still a place for the term when we understand its legacy.
Discusses the history of the Black upper class in the United States.
Legal scholar Michelle Alexander writes that many of the gains of the civil rights movement have been undermined by the mass incarceration of Black Americans in the war on drugs. This book helped inspire the movement against mass incarceration by demonstrating its roots in the connection between slavery and the criminal justice system.
Discusses divisions within the Black community about what it means to be Black.
Essays by one of the great American thinkers about race, literature, and the human condition.
Kendi demonstrates how if we have any hope of grappling with the reality of racism, we must first understand how racist ideas were developed, disseminated, and enshrined in American society.
We can look around and see how racism negatively impacts people of color economically. McGhee shows how racism has a cost for white people too, and how we can imagine an alternative future together.
Very moving discussion of what white people need to know about the experience of being Black in America.
How a white woman became aware of the extent of her privilege and committed to ending that privilege. This is a book highly recommended to read, think about, and discuss.
An exploration of the experiences of a “colored Creole” family and their choices to cross the color line or not.
Antiracist educator Robin DiAngelo illuminates the phenomenon of white fragility and allows us to understand racism as a practice not restricted to ‘bad people’. DiAngelo explores the resistance of many white people to learning about racism.
Through excerpts from over 100 interviews, Touré demonstrates what it means to be Black today.
Tatum, a renowned authority on the psychology of racism, argues that straight talk about our racial identities is essential if we are serious about communicating across racial and ethnic divides and pursuing antiracism.
A powerful memoir of Senghor’s transformation in prison.
A deep and compassionate novel about a young man who returns to 1940s Cajun country to visit a black youth on death row for a crime he didn’t commit.
Covering the period from Reconstruction to modern times, everyday people who thought the values of the South would sustain them in the North find “that the cohesion born and nurtured in the south would be but memory in less than two generations.”
At the age of twelve, Sophie Caco is sent from her impoverished Haitian village to New York to be reunited with a mother she barely remembers. There she discovers secrets that no child should ever know, and a legacy of shame that can be healed only when she returns to Haiti- to the women who first reared her.
Professional women in Los Angeles after the Rodney King beating
Just as her father makes a wrenching decision to send her away for a chance at a better life, Claire suddenly disappears.
A foundational play that that was first created in 1974, and then revived on Broadway in 2022.
This beautifully crafted and page turner of a novel follows the parallel paths of two sisters from the Gold Coast of Africa and their descendants through eight generations: from the Gold Coast to the plantations of Mississippi, from the American Civil War to Jazz Age Harlem. It illuminates slavery’s troubled legacy both for those who were taken captive and those who stayed in Africa.
A young girl witnesses a police shooting that kills her friend.
Seamlessly weaving the lives of the freed and the enslaved, the story allows all of us a deeper understanding of the enduring multidimensional world created by the institution of slavery.
Jones takes the reader into the lives of African American men and women who work against the constant threat of loss to maintain a sense of hope.
This National Book Award Winner, of a newly freed slave and irrepressible rogue, who is lost in the underworld of the 1830s New Orleans.
Whitehead dramatizes a strand of American history through the story of two boys unjustly sentenced to a hellish reform school in Jim Crow-era Florida.
An aging, highly intelligent black lawyer with many contradictions.
A Black family in Mississippi before and after Hurrican Katrina
Chronicling a young slave’s adventures as she makes a desperate bid for freedom in the antebellum South.
Relationship between a Jewish refugee and a Black woman after World War II.
Based on the story of Emmett Till
How Evanston became the first American city to approve a compensation program intended to address historical racism and discrimination.
This foundational article is from the Atlantic in June 2014. Ta-Nehisi Coates takes the reader thru the systemic economic, political and historical practices that limited Black access to home ownership, education inequality, fair legal treatment. Though the topic of reparations has been addressed since enslavement ended, Coates’ approach frames reparations not just as a financial debt to be paid, but as an emotional and psychological one necessary to begin healing the entire nation.
An excellent and detailed background supporting Evanston’s decision to acknowledge damage and pay reparations to its Black citizens. This report explains the history of government action for which reparations should be made.
This is the text of H.R. 40, the bill introduced by Rep. Sheila Jackson-Lee (D-Tex). This bill has been introduced in every session of the House of Representatives since 1989. This year, it went to markup and passed out of the Judiciary Committee for the first time.
The conversation surrounding reparations is underway and the U.S. government must take a leading role.
Excellent history of Evanston’s reparations initiative and also a broad overview of Black reparations history in general.
NPR report the day after Evanston’s City Council voted 8-1 to support the Local Reparations Restorative Housing Program, a discussion about how local reparations do not replace national reparations but rather are additive and important, and information and a link to Ald. Cicely Fleming’s statement opposing Evanston’s plan.
This nicely articulates the Judaic case for supporting reparations
The site is regularly updated with opportunities to learn about reparations.
This workshop was recorded in 2020.
Pulitzer Prize-winning reporter Nikole Hannah-Jones and former U.S. Labor Secretary Robert Reich engage in dialogue about the economic injustice in our country from a race lens. Hannah-Jones focuses on the wealth gap between Black and White people.
A document outlining the Jewish religious and moral case for reparations drafted by Beth Emet members participating in the Social Action Committee’s Reparations Working Group.
Many people think that Reparations only refers to giving money. Yet, it is so much more than that. This resource from The National African American Reparation Commission highlights 10 points of reparations connected to housing & wealth generation, education, health & wellness, and so much more.
While this short article gives a brief perspective from author Michael Gee as to why reparations are needed, it also contains several other resources for further reading.
An excellent educational series sponsored by the URJ
This article (co-authored by a former Evanston resident and Second Baptist Church member) is a well-written summary of the Evanston reparations movement.
A personal articulation of how one person came to believe that Jews should support Reparations.
A conservative’s support for reparations isn’t a common position. Well worth the read.
Be’chol Lashon is an organization that strengthens Jewish identity by raising awareness about Jewish people’s ethnic, racial, and cultural diversity and their experiences around the globe.
This report uses survey and interview data of a complex fabric of Jews of Color identities, lived experiences and perspectives. This survey was published in 2021.
Though the term itself has gained traction in the last decade, there have always been Jews of different races. Scan the globe today, and you’ll find Ethiopian Jews and the African Lemba tribe whose men test positive for the Kohen gene, a marker of the Jewish priests.
By the daughter of Alice Walker and her then-husband, civil rights attorney Mel Leventhal.
An autobiography of a woman born to a white Jewish woman and an African American man, who was adopted by a white Jewish family in Chicago.
Beth Emet’s own Gwen Tucker developed this website with interviews of Jews from diverse backgrounds and their experiences in the Jewish community.
The Kol Or Jews of Color Caucus of the Jewish Council on Urban Affairs is a space for those who identify as Jews of Color to gather, build community, and organize for systemic social change.
We would love to learn about it! Please share your recommendation to email@example.com, or through our Race and Justice Resources Recommendation form.