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Anti-racist Resources: Movies, TV Shows and Books

February 09, 2021 by Coach Training EDU

Anti-racist Resources: Movies, TV Shows and Books

Anti-racist Resources: Movies, TV Shows and Books

Black history month is a time to amplify black voices, share their stories and educate on anti-racism. There’s a lot of information out there, here are a few resources to get you started.


Just Mercy: A Story of Justice and Redemption by Bryan Stevenson.

The book follows Bryan Stevenson’s experience as a lawyer trying to save those the justice system has failed while highlighting systemic racism and failures of the justice system.

Between the World and Me by Ta-Nehisi Coates

Between the World and Me is Ta-Nehisi Coates’s letter to his son attempting to answer some of the biggest questions about American history and ideals to the most intimate concerns of a father for his 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, to his childhood home.

How to be an Antiracist by Ibram X. Kendi

In this book, Kendi explores antiracist ideas from the most basic concepts to visionary possibilities that will help readers see all forms of racism clearly, understand their harmful consequences, and work to fix them in our systems and in ourselves.

The Condemnation of Blackness: Race, Crime, and the Making of Modern Urban America By Khalil Gibran Muhammad

Blackness was criminalized for hundreds of years and this criminalization played a major role in shaping urban development and social policies in the United States. Muhammad explores the influence of the deeply embedded beliefs that black people in general are dangerous criminals.

The Blacker the Berry By Wallace Thurman 

This was one of the first books to address colorism in the Black community. Thurman portrays a young woman’s experience in exploring her racial, sexual and cultural identity. 

Dying of Whiteness: How the Politics of Racial Resentment Is Killing America’s Heartland By Jonathan M. Metzl 

This book details Metzl’s travels across the United States interviewing everyday Americans examining how racial resentment has fueled  policies that negatively impact communities of color.

Sister Outsider: Essays and Speeches by Audre Lorde

A collection of fifteen essays and speeches exploring racism, sexism, ageism, homophobia and class while also celebrating differences and calling for action and social justice.

So You Want to Talk About Race by Ijeoma Oluo

Oluo guides readers of all races through subjects ranging from intersectionality and affirmative action to “model minorities” in an attempt to incite honest conversations about race and racism while also providing the language to have constructive dialogues about how to deal with these issues.

White Fragility: Why it’s so Hard for White People to Talk about Racism by Robin DiAngelo

DiAngelo explains white fragility and explains that racism isn’t a practice restricted to bad people. He details how defensiveness, argumentation and silence reinforces white elitism and protects racial inequality while also discussing how to make change. 

A Terrible Thing to Waste: Environmental Racism and Its Assault on the American Mind by Harriet A. Washington

It’s no secret that Americans of color are disproportionately affected by environmental hazards. Washington explores how these environmental hazards rob communities of color of intellectual power. Washington’s an award-winning science writer who uses an abundance of research to prove that the IQ gap serves as a way to track cognitive damages caused by environmental racism and what can be done to fix this problem.

The New Jim Crow: Mass Incarceration in the Age of Colorblindness by Michelle Alexander

Alexander discusses how targeting black men through the War on Drugs and devastating communities of color, the U.S. criminal justice system has implemented a system of racial control. This targeted attack has left millions of people stuck in the second-class and has been overlooked because of the principle of colorblindness.

Reads for Educators

What is it about me You can’t Teach? By Eleanor Renee Rodriguez, James Bellanca and Deborah Rosalia Esparza

A guide on how to reach struggling students with cultural responsiveness, innovative teaching strategies and technology.

For White Folks who Teach in the Hood and the Rest of Y’all Too: Reality Pedagogy and Urban Education by Christopher Emdin

Combining his experience as an educator with years of research, Helm’s offers a new framework for urban education. From topics such as creating community in the classroom to using culturally relevant strategies, he’s proposing a new way of teaching that makes the student the expert.

Why are all the Black Kids Sitting Together in the Cafeteria? By Beverely Daniel Tatum

Learn about the psychology of racism and how direct communication regarding racism is necessary for ending segregation in schools.

Not Light, but Fire: How to Lead Meaningful Race Conversations in the Classroom by Matthew R. Kay

Kay provides insight on how to facilitate meaningful conversations about race in the classroom from building safe spaces to how to equip educators to have these conversations.

The Guide for White Women Who Teach Black Boys by Eddie Moore, Ali Micheal and Marguerite W. Penick-Parks

Too often, black boys are failed in school and the school-to-prison-pipeline is a clear example of that. This book has gathered the research to provide you with a guide to ensure a learning environment where students can succeed.

Reads for Middle and High School Kids

Born a Crime: Stories from a South African Childhood by Trevor Noah

A collection of stories of a mischievous young boy who grows into a restless young man as he struggles to find himself in a world where he was never supposed to exist. The story also explores  Trevor Noah’s relationship with his fearless, rebellious, and religious mother, a woman determined to save her son from the cycle of poverty, violence, and abuse that would threaten her own life.

We Could be Brothers by Derrick Barnes

This book follows two Black boys who befriend each other after spending some time in after school suspension together. This story covers topics such as mentorship, leadership and how it affects every aspect of their lives.

New Kid by Jerry Craft

A graphic novel about Jordan Banks, who struggles with his identity after transferring to a private school which is very different from the neighborhood he grew up in. 

Here to Stay by Sara Farizan

This story centers around the life of Bijan Majidi and his experience of being a wallflower to a basketball star. A picture circulated around school by a cyberbully makes him look like a terrorist and this story explores his experience speaking out and fighting prejudice. 

Hearts Unbroken by Cynthia Leitich Smith

This story focuses on an Indigenous teen and her experiences navigating high school, prejudice and love.

Movies and TV Shows


This documentary looks at racial inequality in the U.S., especially the disproportionate number of Black Americans in U.S. prisons.

The Hate U Give

This movie centers on Starr Carter, who struggles navigating two worlds: the rich, white world of where she attends school and the poor, Black neighborhood she lives in. Her world is turned upside down when she witnesses her friend get murdered by the hands of the police.

American Son

A separated couple meets at a police station when searching for their missing son where they have a long conversation about family and being Black in the United States. 

Hidden Figures

This movie looks at the achievement of three Black women and their contributions to making the United States a major player in the Space race.

When They See Us

A limited series on Netflix following the stories of the Central Park 5, five young boys who were unjustly convicted of an assault in Central Park, New York focusing on the failures of the justice system especially on marginalized communities.

Dear White People

This Netflix show follows a group of BIPOC students at a predominantly white University and their experiences with cultural bias, social injustice and activism.

These lists are a great way to get started on your research to becoming antiracist, but this is only the beginning. Apply the concepts you’ve learned in these resources in your everyday life and embody empathy to start making change

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