Selections to Read, Watch, Listen, Learn about Race, Racism, and Anti-Racism from February – March, 2021

After reviewing the increasing resentment of the White majority and lack of support for  government programs they perceive as racially inequitable, Heather McGhee proposes a reframing she calls Solidarity Dividends “gains available to everyone when they unite across racial lines, in the form of higher wages, cleaner air and better-funded schools.”

Anti-Asian Violence Spikes Across the U.S.  (The Takeaway, February 15, 2021)

In recent weeks, there’s been a surge in violent incidents in the Bay Area and beyond, specifically targeting Asian American elders. According to Stop AAPI Hate, an organization tracking racist incidents against Asian Americans, there have been more than 2,800 incidents of anti-Asian discrimination since March. 

H.R. 40: Exploring the Path to Reparative Justice in America. Congressional Hearing (February 17, 2021)

Hearing about reparations before the House Committee on the Judiciary.

The “Down South Kitchen” and Family Life in Princeton University’s Isabella McCosh Infirmary by April C. Armstrong (Mudd Manuscript Library Blog, February 17, 2021)

“The stories that have been preserved of the Hillian-Malackie-Dargan family present familiar patterns in African American history. . . . Stereotypes of Black women as nurturing, strong, untiring, and selfless reverberate from what journalists chose to record about them in their lifetimes. . . . There is unquestionable exploitation inherent in the story of their lives, regardless of how much one may admire their service to Princeton.”

Misrepresenting Race — The Role of Medical Schools in Propagating Physician Bias (New England Journal of Medicine, March 4, 2021)

Christina Amutah et al note “Race is not a biologic category based on innate differences that produce unequal health outcomes. Rather, it is a social category that reflects the impact of unequal social experiences on health. Yet medical education and practice have not evolved to reflect these advances in understanding of the relationships among race, racism, and health. . . . [They examined] more than 880 lectures from 21 courses in one institution’s 18-month preclinical medical curriculum, we found five key domains in which educators misrepresent race in their discussions, interpretations of race-based data, and assessments of students’ mastery of race-based science.”

Black representation in film and TV: The challenges and impact of increasing diversity

McKinsey report on the barriers to Black talent in the television and film industry, the economic fallout, and possible solutions for greater diversity and equity.

Asians must be a part of our story, too (March 10, 2021)

john a. powell, Director of U. of California Berkeley’s Othering & Belonging Center, addresses the outbreak of violence against Asians and Asian Americans since the beginning of the COVID 19 pandemic, the history of anti-Asian bigotry in the United States, and advocates for solidarity: “We need new systems to alleviate poverty, deal with mental health, and provide housing for our growing unhoused population.”

“The move by the leaders of the Jesuit conference of priests represents the largest effort by the Roman Catholic Church to make amends for the buying, selling and enslavement of Black people.” . . . . Some descendants fear that the new plan . . . will also fall short, noting that the foundation was developed without input from the wider descendant community.”

“Willa and Charles Bruce were among the first Black people to settle in Manhattan Beach, Calif., but the city shut down their resort in 1924. Now, the county is considering returning the land.”

White Supremacist Propaganda Spikes in 2020

Report from Anti-Defamation League’s Center on Extremism (COE) on White Supremacist activity including at the state level. Three groups—Patriot Front, New Jersey European Heritage Association and Nationalist Social Club—were responsible for 92 percent of propaganda distribution. “New Jersey European Heritage Association was responsible for 508 incidents in 2020, representing 10 percent of the national total – nearly double the number of incidents linked to the group in 2019. Originally focused on New Jersey, the group has expanded its activity to other states.”

Memories of court-ordered busing to desegregate Boston’s public schools frame this review of racial progress and continued tensions.  “The fury unleashed by busing reshaped Boston in many ways, including by setting back the ambitions of Black candidates. White anger made it difficult for them to build the multiracial coalitions that were necessary to win citywide office in Boston, said Jason Sokol, a historian and author of  ‘All Eyes Are Upon Us: Race and Politics From Boston to Brooklyn.’ . . . The white resistance was so vicious that it didn’t seem like a political system a lot of African-Americans wanted to be part of. It was just very poisoned for a long time.”

Town Talks – Black Women in The Movement (Streaming from Mar 24, 2021 – Apr 4, 2021)

Panel discussion about the women in the Civil Rights Movement who worked as tirelessly as their male colleagues but were not quite given the respect and place at the table that they deserved. Who are the women at the front of the movement now, and what do they see as our ongoing challenges to gender parity, both within the struggle and in the wider world? Moderated by Toni Yates, WABC-News
Featured panelists include Marilyn D. Davis, Dr. Deborah Gray White and Lisa Yancey

Raina Lampkins-Fielder, curator for the Souls Grown Deep (SGD) Foundation and program officer for the Community Partnership, Gillett G. Griffin Memorial Lecture, March 5, 2021

“ ‘As we reexamine our collections at the Princeton University Library and work towards making them more inclusive of previously under-represented artists and communities, we look to organizations such as Souls Grown Deep to give us direction and inspiration,’ says Julie Mellby, graphic arts curator. . . . “ ‘The mission of Souls Grown Deep is twofold,’ says Lampkins-Fielder. ‘First, we have the Foundation to document, preserve, and promote the artwork. Second, we have the Community Partnership that focuses on supporting the communities that nurtured these artists.’”  Click here to hear Lampkins-Fielder’s lecture.

Led by Ken Chenault and Ken Frazier, the former chief of AmEx and the departing chief of Merck, respectively, more than 70 Black executives demanded that corporate America push back against laws they say limit voting access.  “Last year, dozens of big companies signed a pledge that stated their ‘clear opposition to harmful legislation aimed at restricting the access of L.G.B.T.Q. people in society.’ But ‘when it comes to race, there’s differential treatment,’ Mr. Chenault said. ‘That’s the reality.’”

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