We have prepared a list of “Well Along Resources” to help meetings think about where they are and what they may do regarding the many facets of “-isms” that confront us and our wider community. We commend these resources to your attention and hope that they will help you and your meeting to reflect, consider and act on the issues and opportunities raised during our recent called meeting and in these resources.
Books & Films
Bonnie Berman Cushing, et al, Accountability, and White Anti-Racist Organizing: Stories from Our Work, Crandall, Dostie & Douglass Books, 2010. “A growing number of white people are working for racial justice, but experienced organizers caution that white activists, to be effective, need to develop accountable relationships with people of color. While this advice is easy to understand in concept, it is often more difficult to apply in practice. Now a select group of white-identified anti-racist organizers from around the country tell personal stories and offer lessons from their everyday experiences that reveal how the notion of accountability informs their work. Their stories describe cutting-edge work, available to a larger audience for the first time.
Randall Robinson, The Debt: What America Owes to Blacks, Plume; 2001. “In this powerful and controversial book, distinguished African-American political leader and thinker Randall Robinson makes a persuasive case for the restoration of the rich history that slavery and segregation severed. Drawing from research and personal experience, he shows that only by reclaiming their lost past and proud heritage can black lay the foundation for a viable future. And white Americans can make reparations for slavery and the century of de jure racial discrimination that followed with monetary restitution, educational programs, and the kinds of equal opportunities that will ensure the social and economic success of all citizens.
Challenging White Supremacy – Resources. The Challenging White Supremacy workshop was a multi-week event held repeatedly over several years in the California Bay Area. It proved to be highly influential, giving many current anti-racist activists their first grounding in key concepts. This resource list contains many full-text entries of articles and other materials used in the workshop. The workshop operated from a frame of radical politics and solidarity between white activists and movements for racial justice led by people of color.
Poverty & Race Research Action Council – Resource Library “The Poverty & Race Research Action Council (PRRAC) is a civil rights policy organization convened by major civil rights, civil liberties, and anti-poverty groups in 1989-90. PRRAC\’s primary mission is to help connect advocates with social scientists working on race and poverty issues, and to promote a research-based advocacy strategy on structural inequality issues.” The online PRRAC online library contains several hundred citations to various studies, broken out by areas of interest/concern.
Racial Equity Tools. “Racial Equity Tools is designed to support individuals and groups working to achieve racial equity. This site offers tools, research, tips, curricula and ideas for people who want to increase their own understanding and to help those working toward justice at every level – in systems, organizations, communities and the culture at large.”
Traces of the Trade – Actions of Faith Communities. “Learn more about actions some churches are taking to address their own legacies of slavery. You can get involved in the implementation of these efforts in your congregation, regional or national church body.” This is a good entry point into what other faith communities are doing with their legacy of participation in slavery.
Addressing Implicit Bias, Racial Anxiety, and Stereotype Threat in Education and Health Care. This recent report describes some of the ways racism can operate even when people do not intend to be racist or to be impacted by racism. Based in a careful review of recent research findings, the report is a good starting point for those who would like to learn more from the scientific literature on racial bias, and how it acts to keep the structural features of system racism in place.
Tema Okun, White Supremacy Culture. This article has been around for several years and is often used and referred to, for good reason. It outlines how aspects of European American culture operated in organizations in such a way as to exclude people of color. Then it offers suggestions for alternative approaches that mitigate the negative impact of exclusion.
Workshops & Conferences
Undoing Racism (TM), People’s Institute for Survival and Beyond. The People’s Institute for Survival and Beyond has been offering anti-racism training to activists, non-profits, faith communities, schools, and other individuals and organizations since 1980. In that time they have trained several hundred thousand people. Their training has led to the emergence of activist communities in several locations across the country, including New Orleans, Seattle, New York City, and Greensboro, NC. Several of the resources on this list can trace their roots, at least in part, to the pioneering work of the People’s Institute.
About using and sharing these resource list
We are only referring resources we are presently familiar with. Over time we may review and consider additional resources.
- There are literally thousands of resources available. It is a resource-rich environment. Picking a small list, any small list necessarily requires not listing many worthy candidates.
- Other Friends may have different and perhaps favored resources. Sometimes people can be very passionate in their support of the use of a particular resource.
- We do not yet have a clear understanding of PYM’s vision, goals, and approach to addressing racism issues. A clearer understanding will inform our choices in the future.
- A resource is only as good as its use. In some cases, this means a resource may be used poorly or even counter-productively if not accompanied by discussion and processing led by a person seasoned in anti-racism, ally work, or racial justice (there are multiple possible frames here).
- Although we are Quakers from an FGC-affiliated yearly meeting we still have much to learn about the specific settings, people, organizational culture, history and relationships with the wider communities that exist and operate in the Philadelphia Yearly Meeting area.
- We only offer our list as a jumping off point. We make no claim to it being comprehensive or appropriate to all occasions that may arise or that our list will speak to the experience of all Friends.
The recommendation and use of resources should be a continuing matter of discussion among PYM Friends and open to suggestion from PYM Friends under the weight of the work.