On Juneteenth, faculty, students, and staff share their recommendations to learn more about racism

Collage of book covers and TV show and movie posters

The Office of Equity, Diversity and Inclusion is in the process of developing an anti-racism resource page on its website. In the meantime, students, faculty and staff developed a list of books and movies for those who wish to learn more about structural racism, discrimination and social justice but are just entering the conversation.

Andrea Herrera, Associate vice chancellor for equity, diversity and inclusion

“White Fragility: Why It’s So Hard for White People to Talk About Racism”

White Fragility book cover

About: “In this “vital, necessary, and beautiful book” (Michael Eric Dyson), antiracist educator Robin DiAngelo deftly illuminates the phenomenon of white fragility and “allows us to understand racism as a practice not restricted to ‘bad people’ (Claudia Rankine). Referring to the defensive moves that white people make when challenged racially, white fragility is characterized by emotions such as anger, fear, and guilt, and by behaviors including argumentation and silence.” To read the full description, click here.

“The New Jim Crow: Mass Incarceration in the Age of Colorblindness”

The New Jim Crow book cover

About: “Seldom does a book have the impact of Michelle Alexander’s “The New Jim Crow.” Since it was first published in 2010, it has been cited in judicial decisions and has been adopted in campus-wide and community-wide reads; it helped inspire the creation of the Marshall Project and the new $100 million Art for Justice Fund; it has been the winner of numerous prizes, including the prestigious NAACP Image Award; and it has spent nearly 250 weeks on the New York Times bestseller list.” To read the full description, click here.

“Why Are All the Black Kids Sitting Together in the Cafeteria?”

Why Are All The Black Kids Sitting Together In The Cafeteria book cover

About: “Walk into any racially mixed high school and you will see Black, White, and Latino youth clustered in their own groups. Is this self-segregation a problem to address or a coping strategy? Beverly Daniel Tatum, a renowned authority on the psychology of racism, argues that straight talk about our racial identities is essential if we are serious about enabling communication across racial and ethnic divides.” To read the full description, click here.

“Privilege, Power, and Difference”

Privilege Power And Difference book cover

About: “‘Privilege, Power, and Difference’ is a groundbreaking tool for students and non-students alike to examine systems of privilege and difference in our society. Written in an accessible, conversational style, the 3rd edition links theory with engaging examples in ways that enable readers to see the underlying nature and consequences of privilege and their connection to it.” To read the full description, click here

“The Matrix Reader”

Matrix Reader book cover

About: “Written by four authors from different disciplinary backgrounds, this reader promotes a commitment to an intersectional approach to teaching race, class, gender and sexuality. Unlike most books of its kind, it highlights the duality of privilege and oppression and the effects that race, gender, and sexuality have on our lives.” To read the full description, click here.

Kaylan Hardin, Communications Major and member of the Black Student Union

“Do The Right Thing”

Do The Right Thing movie cover

“I love just about everything about this film. My first time watching it was in my English class during my senior year of high school. The symbolism and electric cinematography the film has to present was just so eye-catching and deep. Especially the fight between love and hate. I think the message of the film is timeless and is something to always learn from as it still applies to events happening to this day,” says Hardin. To find out where you can stream this movie, click here.


Black Klansman movie poster

Based on Ron Stallworth’s 2014 memoir, BlacKkKlansman follows Colorado Springs’ first black police officer as he manages to successfully infiltrate the local Klu Klux Klan. To find out where you can stream this movie, click here.

“Dear White People”

Dear White People TV show cover

Adapted from the 2014 movie, “Dear White People” is a TV show on Netflix surrounding race relations in modern America. “The show follows the lives of black students apart of a black student union at a predominantly white university,” says Hardin. “I like the show because I can relate to a lot of the characters and their situations and what it’s like to be a black student at a PWI (predominantly white institution).” Stream it now on Netflix.

Paul Harvey, distinguished professor of history

“Reconstruction: America After the Civil War”

Reconstruction of America TV program poster

This is a four-part docuseries on PBS, “about the Reconstruction after the Civil War and how the same issues come down to us in the present day,” says Harvey. “Its an excellent documentary, featuring many of the best historians on the subject, showing the deep roots of contemporary problems.” To learn more about the docu-series, click here.

“Through the Storm, Through the Night: A History of African American Christianity”

Through the Storm, Through the Night: A History of African American Christianity book cover

Published in 2011 and written by Paul Harvey, this book “is a short, readable survey text demonstrating how there has been, in African American churches, a “black lives matter” movement that has existed down through the centuries,” says Harvey. “Through the Storm, Through the Night” made the CHOICE Academic Title list in 2012. Read more here.

Sandy Ho, director of Excel Languages Center and assistant professor attendant rank in the Department of Languages & Cultures

“How to Be Less Stupid About Race: On Racism, White Supremacy, and the Racial Divide”

How To Be Less Stupid About Race book cover

“How to Be Less Stupid About Race” is “your essential guide to breaking through the half-truths and ridiculous misconceptions” about race relations in modern America. “I feel this book was successful and accessible in capturing some very complex concepts and constructs,” says Ho. Read more here.