Race & Justice Resources

The work toward racial justice and the advancement of equity for all can start with a book, an article, a film, or an idea. Therefore, we have curated the following list of resources available to you through our catalog and beyond as your exploration and action around racial injustice moves forward.

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Adult Books

Title details for Americanah by Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie - Wait listAmericanah by Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie

Separated by respective ambitions after falling in love in occupied Nigeria, beautiful Ifemelu experiences triumph and defeat in America while exploring new concepts of race, while Obinze endures an undocumented status in London until the pair is reunited in their homeland 15 years later, where they face the toughest decisions of their lives.

Library on the Go -- E-Book 
cloudLibrary -- E-Book

hoopla -- E-Audiobook


2767. sy475 A People’s History of the United States by Howard Zinn

Presents the history of the United States from the point of view of those who were exploited in the name of American progress.

Library on the Go -- E-Book | E-Audiobook
hoopla-- E-Book | E-Audiobook


The Black and the Blue

The Black and the Blue: A Cop Reveals the Crimes, Racism and Injustice in America's Law Enforcement by Matthew Horace

A CNN contributor, and former law-enforcement himself, offers a personal account of the racism, crimes and color lines that challenge America's law enforcement, sharing insights into high-profile cases, the Black Lives Matter movement and what is needed for change.

cloudLibrary -- E-Book


The bluest eyeThe Bluest Eye by Toni Morrison

Eleven-year-old Pecola Breedlove, an African-American girl in an America whose love for blonde, blue-eyed children can devastate all others, prays for her eyes to turn blue, so that she will be beautiful, people will notice her, and her world will be different.

Library on the Go -- E-Book 
cloudLibrary -- E-Book | E-Audiobook



Book JacketEloquent rage: a Black feminist Discovers Her Superpower by Brittany Cooper

A leading young black feminist illuminates how organized anger, friendship and faith can be powerful sources of positive feminist change, explaining how targeted rage has shaped the careers of such African-American notables as Serena Williams, Beyoncé and Michelle Obama.
cloudLibrary -- E-Book | E-Audiobook
hoopla -- E-Audiobook


Title details for How We Fight For Our Lives by Saeed Jones - AvailableHow We Fight For Our Lives by Saeed Jones

The co-host of BuzzFeed’s AM to DM, award-winning poet and author of Prelude to Bruise documents his coming-of-age as a young, gay, black man in an American South at a crossroads of sex, race and power.

Library on the Go -- E-Audiobook
cloudLibrary -- E-Book


38463If Beale Street Could Talk by James Baldwin

When a pregnant Tish's boyfriend Fonny, a sculptor, is wrongfully jailed for the rape of a Puerto Rican woman, their families unite to prove the charge false

Library on the Go -- E-Book
cloudLibrary -- E-Book | E-Audiobook


32920226. sy475 Sing, Unburied, Sing by Jesmyn Ward

 Living with his grandparents and sister on a Gulf Coast farm, Jojo navigates the challenges of his mother's addictions and his grandmother's cancer before the release of his father from prison prompts a road trip of danger and hope.

Library on the Go -- E-Book
cloudLibrary -- E-Book | E-Audiobook


Title details for Stony the Road by Henry Louis Gates, Jr. - AvailableStony Road: reconstruction, white supremacy, and the rise of Jim Crow by Henry Louis Gates Jr

The NAACP Image Award-winning creator of The African Americans: Many Rivers to Cross presents a revisionist chronicle of America's post-Civil War struggle for racial equality and the violent counterrevolution that resubjugated black Americans throughout the 20th century.

Library on the Go -- E-Book
cloudLibrary -- E-Book


43982054Water Dancer by Ta-Nehisi Coates

Young Hiram Walker was born into bondage, his mother was sold away and he was robbed of all memory of her, but gifted with a mysterious power that saves his life years later when he almost drowns in a river. This strange brush with death forces a new urgency on Hiram's private rebellion, and so begins a journey into the war on slavery. It begins a journey that takes him from the corrupt Deep South to dangerous movements in the North. Even as he's enlisted in the underground war between slavers and the enslaved, Hiram resolves to rescue the family he left behind.

Library on the Go -- E-Book | E-Audiobook
cloudLibrary -- E-Book | E-Audiobook


You can't touch my hair and other things I still have to explain by Phoebe Robinson

An essay collection about race, gender, and pop culture from stand-up comedian and WNYC podcaster Phoebe Robinson.

Library on the Go -- E-Book 


 

Looking for additional books? Click here to access the Adult Race and Justice book archive.

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Teen Books

Into the Streets: A Young Person's Visual History of Protest in the United States by Marke Bieschke

Prominently featured photos, artwork, and other visual elements will guide young adult readers through this lively, informative exploration of significant protests, sit-ins, and collective acts of resistance throughout US history.

 hoopla -- E-Book


Almost American Girl: An Illustrated Memoir by Robin Ha

Moving abruptly from Seoul to Alabama, Robin, a Korean teen, struggles in a hostile blended home and a new school where she does not speak English before forging unexpected connections in a local comic drawing class.


We Are Not From Here by Jenny Torres Sanchez

Even with the love of family, threats lurk around every corner for Pulga, Chico, and Pequeña. And when those threats become all too real, the trio knows they have no choice but to run: from their country, from  their families, from their beloved home. Crossing from Guatemala through Mexico, they follow the route of La Bestia, the perilous train system that might deliver them to a better life -- if they are lucky enough to survive the  journey.

 hoopla -- E-Audiobook 
 cloudLibrary -- E-Book


   The Black Kids by Christina Hammonds Reed

 Perfect for fans of The Hate U Give, this unforgettable coming-of-age debut novel explores issues of race, class, and violence through the eyes of a wealthy black teenager whose family gets caught in the vortex of the     1992 Rodney King Riots.


Title details for All American Boys by Jason Reynolds - Wait listAll American Boys by Jason Reynolds

When sixteen-year-old Rashad is mistakenly accused of stealing, classmate Quinn witnesses his brutal beating at the hands of a police officer who happens to be the older brother of his best friend. Told through Rashad and Quinn's alternating viewpoints.

Library on the Go -- E-Audiobook 
cloudLibrary -- E-Audiobook


Black Enough: Stories of Being Young and Black in America Edited by Ibi Zoboi

Black Enough is an essential collection of captivating stories about what it’s like to be young and Black in America.

cloudLibrary -- E-Book | E-Audiobook


Book JacketDark Sky Rising: Reconstruction and the Dawn of Jim Crow by Henry Louis Gates, Jr.

Henry Louis Gates, Jr. presents a journey through America's past and our nation's attempts at renewal in this look at the Civil War's conclusion, Reconstruction, and the rise of Jim Crow segregation.

cloudLibrary -- E-Audiobook


Dear Martin by Nic Stone

Writing letters to the late Dr. Martin Luther King Jr., seventeen-year-old college-bound Justyce McAllister struggles to face the reality of race relations today and how they are shaping him.

Library on the Go -- E-Book | E-Audiobook 
cloudLibrary -- E-Book  | E-Audiobook


The Hate U Give by Angie ThomasThe Hate U Give by Angie Thomas

Large Print | Book on CD | DVD

After witnessing her friend's death at the hands of a police officer, Starr Carter's life is complicated when the police and a local drug lord try to intimidate her in an effort to learn what happened the night Kahlil died.

Library on the Go -- E-Book | E-Audiobook 
cloudLibrary -- E-Book  | E-Audiobook


I'm Not Dying With You Tonight by Gilly SegalI’m Not Dying With You Tonight by Gilly Segal

Told from two viewpoints, Atlanta high school seniors Lena and Campbell, one black, one white, must rely on each other to survive after a football rivalry escalates into a riot.  

Library on the Go -- E-Book | E-Audiobook 
cloudLibrary -- E-Book 


An Indigenous Peoples' History of the United States for Young People by Roxanne Dunbar-OrtizAn Indigenous Peoples’ History of the United States For Young People by Roxanne Dunbar-Ortiz

Told from the point of view of Native Americans, challenges the founding myth of the United States and shows how the policies against the indigenous peoples was genocidal and imperialist.

Library on the Go -- E-Book
cloudLibrary -- E-Book (Young Adult Edition)   | E-Book (Adult Edition)


 

Looking for additional books? Click here to access the Young Adult Race and Justice Book Archive.

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Juvenile Books

Kid activists : true tales of childhood from champions of changeKid Activists by Robin Stevenson (Ages 9-12)

Across history, activists have worked, marched, and spoken out for equality and justice--and many had moving, relatable childhood stories. Martin Luther King Jr. argued with his dad about whether dancing was a sin. Harvey Milk had a passion for opera. Dolores Huerta was wrongly accused of plagiarizing. Kid activists tell these stories and more through engaging biographies and full-color illustrations on nearly every page.  


Malcolm Little : the boy who grew up to become Malcolm XMalcolm Little: The Boy Who Grew Up To Become Malcolm X by Ilyasah Shabazz (Ages 6-10)

Malcolm X grew to be one of America’s most influential figures. But first, he was a boy named Malcolm Little. Written by his daughter, this inspiring picture book biography celebrates a vision of freedom and justice.


Todos iguales : un corrido de Lemon Grove = All equal : a ballad of Lemon GroveTodos Iguales by Christy Hale (Ages 9-12)

This nonfiction bilingual picture book, written in both English and Spanish, tells the empowering story of The Lemon Grove Incident--a major victory in the battle against school  segregation, and a testament to the tenacity of an immigrant community and its fight for equal rights.


All Are Welcome by Alexandra Penfold

All Are Welcome by Alexandra Penfold (ages Pre-K-7)

Illustrations and simple, rhyming text introduce a school where diversity is celebrated and songs, stories, and talents are shared.


Blended by Sharon M. DraperBlended by Sharon Draper (Ages 8-12)

Piano-prodigy Isabella, eleven, whose black father and white mother struggle to share custody, never feels whole, especially as racial tensions affect her school, her parents both become engaged, and she and her stepbrother are stopped by police.

Library on the Go -- E-Audiobook


Brown Girl Dreaming by Jacqueline Woodson (ages 4-7)

The author shares her childhood memories and reveals the first sparks that ignited her writing career in free-verse poems about growing up in the North and South.

Library on the Go -- E-Book  |  E-Audiobook
cloudLibrary -- E-Book  | E-Audiobook


Crown: an ode to the fresh cut  by Derrick BarnesCrown: An Ode to the Fresh Cut by Derrick Barnes (Ages 5 - 8)

Celebrates the magnificent feeling that comes from walking out of a barber shop with newly-cut hair.


A Good Kind of Trouble by Lisa Moore RaméeA Good Kind of Trouble by Lisa Moore Ramee (Ages 8-12)

After attending a powerful protest, Shayla starts wearing an armband to school to support the Black Lives Matter movement, but when the school gives her an ultimatum, she is forced to choose between her education and her identity.

Library on the Go -- E-BookE-Audiobook
cloudLibrary -- E-Book


Book JacketKing of the Kindergarten by Derrick Barnes (ages Pre-K - 5)

A confident little boy takes pride in his first day of kindergarten, encouraging new students with a reassuring message about this exciting milestone.


Let the Children March by Monica Clark-Robinson Let the Children March by Monica Clark-Robinson (Ages 6-8)

Under the leadership of Dr. Martin Luther King, children and teenagers march against segregation in Birmingham, Alabama, in 1963.

cloudLibrary -- E-Book | E-Audiobook


Little Leaders: Bold Women in Black History by Vashti HarrisonLittle leaders : bold women in black history by Vashti Harrison (Ages 8-12)

 Based on her popular Instagram posts, author/illustrator Vashti Harrison shares the stories of 40 bold African American women who shaped history.

cloudLibrary -- E-Book | E-Audiobook


New Kid by Jerry Craft New Kid by Jerry Craft (Ages 8-12)

Graphic Novel - Seventh grader Jordan Banks loves nothing more than drawing cartoons about his life. But instead of sending him to the art school of his dreams, his parents enroll him in a prestigious private school known for its academics, where Jordan is one of the few kids of color in his entire grade.

Library on the Go -- E-BookE-Audiobook
cloudLibrary -- E-Book | E-Audiobook


Title details for The Parker Inheritance by Varian Johnson - Wait listThe Parker Inheritance by Varian Johnson  (Ages 8-12)

Spending the summer in Lambert, South Carolina, Candice discovers the letter that sent her grandmother on a treasure hunt, and with her new friend Brandon, sets off to expose the injustice once committed against a local African American family.

Library on the Go -- E-Book
cloudLibrary -- E-Book | E-Audiobook


Looking for additional books? Click here to access the Juvenile Race and Justice Book archive.

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Recommended Resources


  • Uncomfortable Conversations with a Black Man- A series of conversations between Emmanuel Acho and guests. A book iteration of this series is also due out November 2020.
  • Race and Cultural Diversity in American Life and History- A free course offered through Coursera and taught by University of Illinois professor, Dr. James D. Anderson. 
  • Project ReadyA free online professional development curriculum
  • Code Switch PodcastHosted by journalists of color, the NPR podcast tackles the subject of race head-on. They explore how it impacts every part of society — from politics and pop culture to history, sports and everything in between. 
  • Springer Nature Black Lives Matter Collection- A collection of books, journal articles and magazine content that amplifies Black voices and the issues raised by the Black Lives Matter movement.
  • Intersectionality Matters! Podcast- This podcast is hosted by Kimberlé Crenshaw, an American civil rights advocate and a leading scholar of critical race theory.
  • 1619 An audio series from The New York Times observing the 400th anniversary of the beginning of American slavery.

 

 

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