A short blog post cannot do Dr. DeGruy’s training justice, so I recommend reading her book, Post Traumatic Slave Syndrome: America’s Legacy of Injury and Healing. I also want to take this opportunity to share some of the resources she recommended. As she spoke I was struck by the need to continue to educate myself about the historical context of systemic racism, the need to have more conversations about race and racism in the United States, and the imperative need to turn knowledge and conversation into action. So below are some resources I hope you, our colleagues, and our school partners will use to increase knowledge, have more conversations and guide us in our work towards racial justice.
BOOKS ABOUT RACE RELATIONS IN THE UNITED STATES:
Why are all the Black Kids Sitting Together in The Cafeteria by Beverly Daniel Tatum, Ph. D.
“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. These topics have only become more urgent as the national conversation about race is increasingly acrimonious”
Two Nations: Black and White, Separate, Hostile, Unequal by Andrew Hacker
“Why, despite continued efforts to increase understanding and expand opportunities, do black and white Americans still lead separate lives, continually marked by tension and hostility? In his much-lauded classic, newly updated to reflect the changing realities of race in our nation, Andrew Hacker explains the origins and meaning of racism and clarifies the conflicting theories of equality and inferiority. He paints a stark picture of racial inequality in America - focusing on family life, education, income, and employment - and explores the current controversies over politics, crime, and the causes of the gap between the races. Illuminating and oftentimes startling, Two Nations demonstrates how race has defined America's history and will continue to shape its future.”
RESOURCES ABOUT HEALTH DISPARITIES:
“A documentary series broadcast by PBS exploring the root causes of our alarming socio-economic and racial inequities in health. The four-hour series crisscrosses the nation uncovering startling new findings that suggest there is much more to our health than bad habits, health care, or unlucky genes. The social circumstances in which we are born, live, and work can actually get under our skin and disrupt our physiology as much as germs and viruses.”
Medical Apartheid: The Dark History of Medical Experimentation on Black Americans from Colonial times to the Present
“The product of years of prodigious research into medical journals and experimental reports long undisturbed, Medical Apartheid reveals the hidden underbelly of scientific research and makes possible, for the first time, an understanding of the roots of the African American health deficit. At last, it provides the fullest possible context for comprehending the behavioral fallout that has caused black Americans to view researchers—and indeed the whole medical establishment—with such deep distrust. No one concerned with issues of public health and racial justice can afford not to read Medical Apartheid, a masterful book that will stir up both controversy and long-needed debate.”
RESOURCES ABOUT WHITE PRIVILEGE:
Mirrors of Privilege: Making Whiteness Visible by Shakti Butler
“The stories in the film reveal what is often required to move through the stages of denial, defensiveness, guilt, fear and shame into making a solid commitment to ending racial injustice.”
White People Facing Race: Uncovering the Myths that Keep Racism in Place by Peggy McIntosh, Ph.D.
“An article exploring the reasons why conversations about racism are so difficult. She addresses five myths that preserve white privilege and also discusses the rich rewards that actually facing race can bring.”
Dr. DeGruy also called attention to the work of Dr. Carl Bell on Fetal Alcohol Spectrum Disorder. Learn more here.
Sara Moses, UE Coach and Clinical Intervention Specialist