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To serve the diverse interests of the congregation at St. Mark’s, the Verna J. Dozier Memorial Library includes books and a limited number of films on a wide range of topics. Among them are a fairly small number of books addressing issues of racism and racial justice (see list at the bottom of this page).
Because of the moral reawakening that is taking place across our country today, a high priority for the Library Committee is to add key works on these issues so they will be available for church members when the building reopens.
To that end, we compiled a list of 25 highly regarded books based on reviews in the Washington Post and New York Times as well as recommendations from clergy and fellow parishioners. Budget and space constraints won’t allow us to add that many books to the collection without removing other important works from the shelves. Despite these constraints, we hope to add more books on racial justice for adults next year and improve our collection for children and young adults on this and other topics.
Here are the top 10 books chosen by respondents in our recent survey of parishioners:
These books were ranked 11 to 25 by parishioners responding to the survey:
The Library Committee is able to purchase only a few of the selected books with the funds in its 2020 budget and will acquire the rest next year depending on the 2021 budget.
We would welcome in-kind donations of new or “gently used” copies of these books from parishioners who would like to see them added to the collection. If you are interested in doing that, please contact Cecilie Jones.
Anderson, Elizabeth. The Imperative of Integration.
Blum, Edward, and Paul Harvey. The Color of Christ: The Son of God and the Saga of Race in America.
Brown, Austin Channing. I’m Still Here: Black Dignity in a World Made for Whiteness.
Cooper, Brittany. Eloquent Rage: A Black Feminist Discovers Her Superpower.
Cox, R. David Cox. The Religious Life of Robert E. Lee.
Davis, Dána-Ain Davis. Reproductive Injustice: Racism, Pregnancy, and Premature Birth.
Desmond, Matthew Desmond. Evicted: Poverty and Profit in the American City.
Dorn, T. Fedder. Challenges on the Emmaus Road: Episcopal Bishops Confront Slavery, Civil War, and Emancipation.
Foner, Eric. The Second Founding: How the Civil War and Reconstruction Remade the Constitution.
Foreman, James, Jr. Locking Up Our Own: Crime and Punishment in Black America.
Ginsburg, Ruth Bader, et al. My Own Words.
Hill, Jane H. The Everyday Language of White Racism.
Lopez, Ian Haney. Dog Whistle Politics: How Coded Racial Appeals Have Reinvented Racism and Wrecked the Middle Class.
McCaulley, Esau. Reading While Black: African American Biblical Interpretation as an Exercise in Hope.
Meacham, Jon. His Truth is Marching On: John Lewis and the Power of Hope
____________. The Soul of America: The Battle for our Better Angels
Meeks, Catherine, and Jim Wallis. Living into God’s Dream: Dismantling Racism in America.
Menakem, Resmaa. My Grandmother’s Hands: Racialized Trauma and the Pathway to Mending Our Hearts and Bodies.
Metzel, Jonathan. Dying of Whiteness: How the Politics of Racial Resentment is Killing America’s Heartland.
Robbins, Glenn. The Bishop of the Old South: The Ministry and Civil War Legacy of Leonidas Polk.
Table, George C. Gods’ Almost Chosen Peoples – A Religious History of the American Civil War.
Thurman, Howard. Meditations of the Heart.
Tisby, Jemar. The Color of Compromise: The Truth about the American Church’s Complicity in Racism.
Williams, Heather. Help Me to Find My People: The African American Search for Family Lost in Slavery.
The African Americans: Many Rivers to Cross with Henry Louis Gates, Jr.
American Jail (CNN documentary)
Driving While Black: Race, Space and Mobility in America
I Am Not Your Negro
John Lewis: Good Trouble
13th by Ava Duvernay
Note: Concerning the availability of DVD or videocassette players for home viewing, 50% of survey respondents say they do watch DVDs at home, while 50% do not have a player. Far fewer have access to videocassette players; only 23% have a VCR at home.
Bennett, Lerone, Jr. What Manner of Man: A Biography of Martin Luther King, Jr., 1964.
Deutsch, Stephanie. You Need a Schoolhouse: Booker T. Washington, Julius Rosenwald, and the Building of Schools for the Segregated South, 2015.
Felder, Cain Hope. Troubling Biblical Waters: Race, Class and Family, 1990.
King, Martin Luther, Jr. The Wisdom of Martin Luther King in His Own Words, 1968.
Smith, Luther E., Jr., ed. Howard Thurman: Essential Writings, 2006.
Thurman, Howard, Deep Is the Hunger, 1951.
_______________, Jesus and the Disinherited, 1949.
_______________, The Luminous Darkness: A Personal Interpretation of the Anatomy of Segregation and the Ground of Hope, 1965.