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Anti-racism: Getting Started

Books, articles, videos and more addressing the systemic racism in our society and ways of being anti-racist. This work is important and on-going.

University Libraries statement against racism

Photo by James Eades on Unsplash

Black lives matter. The lives of Indigenous and People of Color and other marginalized groups matter.

As an institution devoted to the pursuit of knowledge and intellectual development at a Catholic institute of higher education, the University libraries are committed to the continual work towards justice and equity. It is not enough for us to not simply state this, we must continually work and learn to be anti-racist and to put our learning into action.  That work requires listening, reflection, learning, questioning, and acting to bring justice.

Photo by James Eades on Unsplash

 


Using this guide

This guide has links to books, articles, and other readings primarily aimed at students, faculty, and staff who are white.  On this first tab there are links to sites that guide you through readings and reflections.  Other tabs have resources broken out by type.

Becoming Anti-Racist

Becoming Anti-Racist

The work of becoming anti-racist is ongoing for all of us who were raised in a society built upon racism.  This image, from Andrew M. Ibrahim MD, MSc is one way to visualize the phases of becoming anti-racist. The image was inspired by the work of Dr. Kendi and used with permission. A text version of the zones in the image is below:

Fear Zone:

  • I deny racism is a problem.  
  • I avoid hard questions.  
  • I strive to be comfortable. 
  • I talk to others who look and think like me.

Learning Zone:

  • I recognize racism is a present and current problem. 
  • I seek out questions that make me uncomfortable. 
  • I understand my own privilege in ignoring racism. 
  • I educate myself about race and structural racism. 
  • I am vulnerable about my own biases and knowledge gaps. 
  • I listen to others who think and look differently than me.

Growth Zone:

  • I identify how I may unknowingly benefit from racism. 
  • I promote and advocate for policies and leaders that are Anti-Racist. 
  • I sit with my discomfort.
  • I speak out when I see racism in action. 
  • I educate my peers on how racism harms our profession. 
  • I don't let mistakes deter me from being better. 
  • I yield positions of power to those otherwise marginalized. 

Credit for this work

The resources listed on this guide have been compiled and recommended by many people who have put a lot of thought and energy into the work of anti-racism.  We want to gratefully acknowledge and thank the people and groups for that work. We have included credits for every link when possible.


Creative Commons License
This guide is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike 4.0 International License. It is not necessary to attribute work the the St. Thomas Libraries, but please retain credit to others that are listed.

Starting points

This work can be overwhelming and hard to know how to start and move forward.  Luckily, there are some great programs that walk you through readings, reflection prompts, and other activities to build your knowledge.  Below are links to classes, online challenges, curricula, and other sites that offer readings, videos, and more in a scaffolded way to help people educate themselves at their own pace. These are great places to get started.


Especially for the University of St. Thomas Community


Minnesota Specific


United States History


Anti-Racism / Talking about Race