The Diversity, Inclusion, and Belonging Library is a collection of books, films, and other resources selected by the Harvard Kennedy School Office of Diversity, Inclusion, and Belonging (ODIB) and Library & Knowledge Services (LKS). We hope this collection will foster communication and discussion on diversity, inclusion, and belonging at HKS. Help us grow this collection by recommending books and films that resonate with you.

Please submit suggestions through this webform, either anonymously or with your name and contact information if you'd like to be notified when we add the item to the collection. You can find all items in print format through HOLLIS.

Featured Titles

Teaching With Tension: Race, Resistance and Reality in the Classroom
Bolton, Philathia, Cassander Smith, and Lee Bebout, ed. Teaching With Tension: Race, Resistance and Reality in the Classroom. Evanston, IL: Northwestern University Press, 2019. View the eBook-Harvard Key RequiredAbstract
"A collection of seventeen original essays that address the extent to which attitudes about race, impacted by the current political moment in the United States, have produced pedagogical challenges for professors in the humanities. As a flashpoint, this current political moment is defined by the visibility of the country's first black president, the election of his successor, whose presidency has been associated with an increased visibility of the alt-right, and the emergence of the neoliberal university. Together these social currents shape the tensions with which we teach"-provided by the publisher.
How to Be an Antiracist
Kendi, Ibram X. How to Be an Antiracist. New York: One World, 2019. View the eBook (Harvard Key required)Abstract
NEW YORK TIMES BESTSELLER • From the National Book Award–winning author of Stamped from the Beginning comes a “groundbreaking” (Time) approach to understanding and uprooting racism and inequality in our society—and in ourselves.“The most courageous book to date on the problem of race in the Western mind.”—The New York Times NAMED ONE OF THE BEST BOOKS OF THE YEAR BY The New York Times Book Review • Time • NPR • The Washington Post • Shelf Awareness • Library Journal • Publishers Weekly • Kirkus ReviewsAntiracism is a transformative concept that reorients and reenergizes the conversation about racism—and, even more fundamentally, points us toward liberating new ways of thinking about ourselves and each other. At it's core, racism is a powerful system that creates false hierarchies of human value; its warped logic extends beyond race, from the way we regard people of different ethnicities or skin colors to the way we treat people of different sexes, gender identities, and body types. Racism intersects with class and culture and geography and even changes the way we see and value ourselves. In How to Be an Antiracist, Kendi takes readers through a widening circle of antiracist ideas—from the most basic concepts to visionary possibilites—that will help readers see all forms of racism clearly, understand their posionous consequences, and work to oppose them in our systems and in ourselves.Kendi weaves an electrifying combination of ethics, history, law, and science with his own personal story of awakening to antiracism. This is an essential work for anyone who wants to go beyond the awareness of racism to the next step: contributing to the formation of a just and equitable society.Praise for How to Be an Antiracist “Ibram X. Kendi's new book, How to Be an Antiracist, couldn't come at a better time.... Kendi has gifted us with a book that is not only an essential instruction manual but also a memoir of the author's own path from anti-black racism to anti-white racism and, finally, to antiracism.... How to Be an Antiracist gives us a clear and compelling way to approach, as Kendi puts it in his introduction, ‘the basic struggle we're all in, the struggle to be fully human and to see that others are fully human.'”—NPR“Kendi dissects why in a society where so few people consider themselves to be racist the divisions and inequalities of racism remain so prevalent. How to Be an Antiracist punctures the myths of a post-racial America, examining what racism really is—and what we should do about it.”—Time
Heavy
Laymon, Kiese. Heavy. New York: Scribner, 2018. View the eBook-Harvard Key RequiredAbstract

Kiese Laymon writes eloquently and honestly about growing up a hard-headed Black son to a complicated and brilliant Black mother in Jackson, Mississippi. By attempting to name secrets and lies he and his mother spent a lifetime avoiding, he asks us to confront the terrifying possibility that few in this nation actually know how to responsibly love, and even fewer want to live under the weight of actually becoming free.

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Backlash: What Happens When We Talk Honestly About Racism in America
Yancy, George. Backlash: What Happens When We Talk Honestly About Racism in America. Lanham, MD: Rowman & Littlefield, 2018. View the eBook (Harvard Key required)Abstract
"When George Yancy penned a New York Times article entitled "Dear White America," he knew that he was courting controversy. Here, Yancy chronicles the ensuing blowback as he seeks to understand what it was that created so much rage among so many white readers. He challenges white Americans to develop a new empathy for the African American experience."–Provided by publisher.
Racism Without Racists: Color-Blind Racism and the Persistence of Racial Inequality in America
Bonilla-Silva, Eduardo. Racism Without Racists: Color-Blind Racism and the Persistence of Racial Inequality in America. Lanham, MD: Rowman & Littlefield, 2018. View the eBook (Harvard Key required)Abstract
Eduardo Bonilla-Silva's acclaimed Racism without Racists is a provocative book that explodes the belief that America is now a color-blind society. The fifth edition includes a new chapter addressing what readers can do to confront racism, new material on the racial climate post-Obama, new coverage of the Black Lives Matter movement, and more.
Rethinking Racial Justice
Valls, Andrew. Rethinking Racial Justice. New York: Oxford University Press, 2018. View the e-book (Harvard Key required)Abstract
The racial injustice that continues to plague the United States couldn't be a clearer challenge to the country's idea of itself as a liberal and democratic society, where all citizens have a chance at a decent life. So what must a liberal society do to address the legacies of its past, and how should we aim to reconceive liberalism in order to do so? In this work, Andrew Valls takes issue with solutions from both the left and the right, and therefore with the constricted ways in which racial justice is debated in the United States today.
Deep Roots : How Slavery Still Shapes Southern Politics
Sen, Maya, Avidit Acharya, and Matthew Blackwell. Deep Roots : How Slavery Still Shapes Southern Politics. Princeton : Princeton University Press, 2018. View the eBook-Harvard Key RequiredAbstract
While legislation such as the Civil Rights Act and the Voting Rights Act made huge strides in increasing economic opportunity and reducing educational disparities, southern slavery has had a profound, lasting, and self-reinforcing influence on regional and national politics that can still be felt today in the South.
White Fragility: Why It's so Hard for White People to Talk About Racism
DiAngelo, Robin J. White Fragility: Why It's so Hard for White People to Talk About Racism. Boston: Beacon Press, 2018. View the eBook (Harvard Key required)Abstract
In this groundbreaking and timely book, antiracist educator Robin DiAngelo deftly illuminates the phenomenon of white fragility. 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. These behaviors, in turn, function to reinstate white racial equilibrium and prevent any meaningful cross-racial dialogue. In this in-depth exploration, DiAngelo explores how white fragility develops, how it protects racial inequality, and what we can do to engage more constructively.
White Rage: The Unspoken Truth of Our Racial Divide
Anderson, Carol. White Rage: The Unspoken Truth of Our Racial Divide. New York: Bloomsbury, 2016. View the eBook (Harvard Key required)Abstract
From the Civil War to our combustible present, acclaimed historian Carol Anderson reframes our continuing conversation about race, chronicling the powerful forces opposed to black progress in America. Anderson pulls back the veil that has long covered actions made in the name of protecting democracy, fiscal responsibility, or protection against fraud, rendering visible the long lineage of white rage. Compelling and dramatic in the unimpeachable history it relates, White Rage will add an important new dimension to the national conversation about race in America.
Race Talk and the Conspiracy of Silence: Understanding and Facilitating Difficult Dialogues on Race
Sue, Derald Wing. Race Talk and the Conspiracy of Silence: Understanding and Facilitating Difficult Dialogues on Race. Hoboken, NJ: Wiley, 2015. View the eBook (Harvard Key required)Abstract
"Learn to talk about race openly, honestly, and productivelyMost people avoid discussion of race-related topics because of the strong emotions and feelings of discomfort that inevitably accompany such conversations. Rather than endure the conflict of racial realities, many people choose instead to avoid the topic altogether, or remain silent when it is raised. Race Talk and the Conspiracy of Silence: Understanding and Facilitating Difficult Dialogues on Race puts an end to that dynamic by sharing strategies for smoothing conversations about race in a productive manner.A guide for facilitating and participating in difficult dialogues about race, author Derald Wing Sue - an internationally recognized expert on multiculturalism, diversity, and microaggressions - explores the characteristics, dynamics, and meaning behind discussions about race as well as the hidden "ground rules" that inhibit honest and productive dialogue. Through emotional and visceral examples, this book explains why conversations revolving around racial issues are so difficult, and provides guidelines, techniques, and advice for navigating and leading honest and forthright discussions. Readers will develop a stronger ability to build rapport with people unlike themselves, and discover how not talking about race impacts society as a whole. Overcome and make visible the fears associated with race talk Learn practical ideas for talking openly about race Facilitate and navigate discussion with expert strategy Examine the hidden rules that govern race talk Understand the benefits of successful conversations Discussions about race do not have to result in disastrous consequences, and can in fact be highly beneficial to all parties involved. It's important that people have the ability to converse openly and honestly with their students, colleagues, children, and neighbors, and Race Talk provides the path for achieving this goal"– Provided by publisher.
Between the World and Me
Coates, Ta-Nehisi. Between the World and Me. New York: Spiegel & Grau, 2015. View the eBook (Harvard Key required)Abstract

"In a profound work that pivots from the biggest questions about American history and ideals to the most intimate concerns of a father for his son, Ta-Nehisi Coates offers a powerful new framework for understanding our nation's history and current crisis. Americans have built an empire on the idea of "race," a falsehood that damages us all but falls most heavily on the bodies of black women and men–bodies exploited through slavery and segregation, and, today, threatened, locked up, and murdered out of all proportion. What is it like to inhabit a black body and find a way to live within it? And how can we all honestly reckon with this fraught history and free ourselves from its burden? Between the World and Me is Ta-Nehisi Coates's attempt to answer these questions in a letter to his adolescent son. Coates shares with his son–and readers–the story of his awakening to the truth about his place in the world through a series of revelatory experiences, from Howard University to Civil War battlefields, from the South Side of Chicago to Paris, from his childhood home to the living rooms of mothers whose children's lives were taken as American plunder. Beautifully woven from personal narrative, reimagined history, and fresh, emotionally charged reportage, Between the World and Me clearly illuminates the past, bracingly confronts our present, and offers a transcendent vision for a way forward."–Publisher's description. 

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