What do you want to learn?
Acknowledging the wounds of the past is the first step towards healing. Read Digging Up Old Wounds if you are wondering about the importance of history in the work of racial reconciliation.
“We need to use our minds to consider the historical and contemporary reality of privilege–what it is, how it operates, who it excludes, and what damage it does.
Engaging our minds can take the shape of reading books and discussing them with others, listening to speakers, researching local history, and asking questions.
Without the work of the mind, anyone engaging in the work of social justice runs the risk of well-meaning but harmful and ignorant action.”
from Amy Julia’s blog post: Hope for Healing.
Scene on Radio’s “Seeing White” Series: This is essential information for anyone who wants to understand where we are as a nation when it comes to racial divisions.
Serial Season Three: If you want to engage with real people and real stories that tell a broader story of justice (and injustice) in America, I highly recommend this podcast.
Reading other people’s memoirs, we allow our understanding of the world and ourselves to be shaped by understanding different experiences and we begin to garner awareness of painful histories in our country.
“These are books that informed my thinking as well as my feelings about where we are as a nation when it comes to racial division, and how we can move forward towards systems of justice, housing, education, and life experience that offer comparable opportunities for all the people. “
“If you would like to think more about what it means to be human, what it means to express diversity within our common humanity, what it means to understand yourself and others as both vulnerable and beloved, needy and gifted, broken and beautiful, I wanted to offer four books that have helped me”
This is a resource promoting black children’s literature, with lists of books that feature people of color
Documentary looking at the history of slavery, Jim Crow, and mass incarceration in America
Documentary exploring the role the North engaged in upholding the institution of slavery
Forthcoming documentary about the concept of being “normal,” told through the lens of a 21-year old young woman with Down syndrome. The Becker family is also interviewed throughout this film.
Series of resources and teaching materials for religious groups to work through issues of privilege and the history of the church.
At its core, using our minds to ask these questions is a way of acknowledging the harm that has been done in our own lives and communities as a result of human choices to erect and maintain social divisions that privilege some people and exclude others. Acknowledging harm is one step in the process of healing. Here are a few examples of small and large efforts to acknowledge harm:
Equal Justice Initiative & Lynching Memorial – Bryan Stevenson’s willingness to hope for a good future in the midst of a horrific past depends upon our collective willingness to face the pain of the present moment.
The Witness Stone Project in Connecticut, offers students a way to research their local history and understand the presence and economic impact of slavery in the Northern states.
We want to hear from you…
Do you have a personal example of a story from your own life or your local community which relates to these stories? We would love to hear them and possibly include them on this page. Email firstname.lastname@example.org with your thoughts.