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Becoming Antiracist - Learning, Sharing, Growing

A project of the Rotary Club of Sebastopol Sunrise Antiracism Task Force

Suggestions for reading and listening

  • Such a Fun Age by Kiley Reid - An engrossing, entertaining novel that explores race relations with an a focus on how unexamined white privilege can be employed with devastating consequences.
    Recommended by Michael Fels

  • NPR Code Switch (the podcast) - “Code Switch is the fearless conversations about race that you’ve been waiting for. Hosted by journalists of color, our podcast tackles the subject of race head-on. We explore how it impacts every part of society — from politics and pop culture to history, sports and everything in between. This podcast makes all of us part of the conversation because we’re all part of the story” Available where you get your podcasts.
    Recommended by Michael Fels

  • Caste by Isabel Wilkerson - “In this brilliant book, Isabel Wilkerson gives us a masterful portrait of an unseen phenomenon in America as she explores, through an immersive, deeply researched narrative and stories about real people, how America today and throughout its history has been shaped by a hidden caste system, a rigid hierarchy of human rankings. Wilkerson is the author of The Warmth of Other Suns: The Epic Story of America’s Great Migration.
    Both are highly recommended (by Michael Fels)

  • Interview with a Sonoma State University Prof of English Literature - This is an excellent bibliography as well as an interesting interview with a Sonoma State University Prof of English Literature.

  • Are companies really committed to diversity? - This interview on the BBC World Service Business Daily features a good friend and leading practitioner in the field of corporate Diversity Training. It's short, but raises interesting questions.

  • “Good” White Boomer Waking Up
    Rotary Club of Sebastopol Sunrise Program, Sep 2 2020
    Written by Cynthia McReynolds

  • The Courage to Listen Short, but powerful.
    Recommended by Joyce Oneko.

  • Confederate Monuments Beautifully written and immediately relevant.
    Recommended by Marnie Tattersall.

  • 1619 - a Podcast From The New York Times : An audio series on how slavery has transformed America, connecting past and present through the oldest form of storytelling.
    Recommended Michael Fels

  • A Call For Reparations: Pulitzer Prize-winning journalist Nikole Hannah-Jones says 250 yeas of slavery and 100 years of legalized segregation robbed Black Americans of the ability to accumulate wealth. Cash payments would help repair the damage. Her latest piece in the 'New York Times Magazine' is 'What Is Owed.'
    Recommended Michael Fels

  • Healing Racism: Sharon Salzberg, author of Lovingkindness and Real Love “In Mindful of Race, Ruth King boldly declares, ' Racism is a heart disease that's curable.' She then proceeds to guide us on a three-part journey to healing. Recommended by PJay and Ellie
    Recommendeds PJay and Ellie

  • The Water Dancer: Ta-Nehisi Coates: Magical realism meets real life in the acclaimed journalist’s debut novel about American slaves escaping to the north
    Recommended Michael Fels

  • Born a Crime: Trevor Noah. Born a Crime by Trevor Noah is a great memoir. The story follows Trevor's life as a biracial child in South Africa during Aparthid.
    Recommended by PJay and Ellie and Michael Fels

  • How to be an Antiracist: Ibraham X. Kendi. “The most courageous book to date on the problem of race in the western mind.” NY Times.
    Recommended by Michael Fels

  • The Heritage: Black Athletes, A Divided America, and the Politics of Patriotism. Howard Bryan. "Examines the story of sports post-9/11, once neutral but now embedded with deference toward the military and police, colliding with the political reawakening of the black athlete in post-Ferguson America"--
    Recommended by Michael Fels

  • Locking Up Our Own: Crime and Punishment in Black America. James Forman Jr. Winner of the Pulitzer Prize for General Nonfiction.
    Recommended by Michael Fels

  • An American Genocide: The United States and the California Indian Catastrophe. Benjamin Madley. “Between 1846 and 1873, California Indian population plunged from perhaps 150,000 to 30,000. Benjamin Madley is the first historian to uncover the full extent of the slaughter, the involvement of state and federal officials, the taxpayer dollars that supported the violence, including indigenous resistance, who did the killing, and why the killings ended.”
    Recommended by Michael Fels
  • Between the World and Me: Ta-Nehisi Coates This moving, potent testament might have been titled “Black Lives Matter.” Or: “An American Tragedy.”
    Recommended by Joyce Oneko and Michael Fels

  • So You Want to Talk about Race: Ijeoma Oluo This book explores the complex reality of today's racial landscape--from white privilege and police brutality to systemic discrimination and the Black Lives Matter movement--offering straightforward clarity that readers need to contribute to the dismantling of the racial divide.
    Recommended by Mikel Cook

  • The Color of Law by Richard Rothstein: This book documents the history of both government and private sector legal discrimination in this country.
    Recommended by Nick Randall

  • Seeing White: A podcast produced by Scene On Radio from the Center for Documentary Studies. This outstanding podcast series examines the racial structures of America, focusing on dissecting the oppressors rather than the oppressed. Click here to listen to the first in the series.
    Recommended by Mikel Cook and Michael Fels

  • The Road to Resegregation: Northern California and the Failure of Politics. This book targets the policy-driven causes for systemic housing discrimination in the greater Bay Area post WWII, outcomes in which both Nick Randall’s brother (City Manager in San Ramon) and Nick himself (Hayward Councilmember) played minor, unwitting parts.
    Recommended by Nick Randall

Videos, Links, Quotations



12 Ways To Listen, Learn, and Take Action Right Now | theSkimm


Systemic Racism in the US | theSkimm


Doug Williford

Doug Williford

'If my wife comes to me in obvious pain and asks "Do you love me?", an answer of "I love everyone" would be truthful, but also hurtful and cruel in the moment. If a co-worker comes to me upset and says "My father just died", a response of "Everyone's parents die" would be truthful, but hurtful and cruel in the moment. So when a friend speaks up in a time of obvious pain and hurt and says "Black lives matter", a response of "All lives matter" is truthful. But it is hurtful and cruel in the moment'.


Rotary Club of Sebastopol Sunrise
PO Box 2481
Sebastopol, CA 95473

We meet Wednesday mornings
7:15am – 8:30am
Masonic Hall
373 North Main Street
Sebastopol, CA 95472

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