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Anti-Racism Reading List

A reading list put together by the Mississippi Humanities Council


The Mississippi Humanities Council and Mississippi Library Commission have compiled a list of books to encourage "thoughtful reflection" and "foster a society built on racial equality." 

The list includes over 120 books that include titles by "contemporary Mississippi writers like Angie Thomas, Jesmyn Ward, and Kiese Laymon, whose fiction and memoir help inspire empathy in White readers with their honest accounts of the experiences of Black Americans."

Titles available through the Hinds Community College Libraries are profiled within this libguide and are available for checkout. Titles not currently available can be requested through InterLibrary Loan


You can learn more about the Mississippi Humanities Council's Ant-Racism Reading Shelf Program here.

The List

Suggested Books for Anti-Racism Reading Shelf

Adult Nonfiction:

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

White Rage: The Unspoken Truth of Our Racial Divide – Carol Anderson

I Know Why the Caged Bird Sings – Maya Angelou

The Fire Next Time – James Baldwin

Blindspot: Hidden Biases of Good People – Mahzarin R. Banaji

The Half Has Never Been Told: Slavery and the Making of American Capitalism – Edward E. Baptist

Slavery by Another Name: The Re-Enslavement of Black Americans from the Civil War to World War II – Douglas A. Blackmon

Racism Without Racists: Color-Blind Racism and the Persistence of Racial Inequality in America - Eduardo Bonilla-Silva

I'm Still Here: Black Dignity in a World Made for Whiteness – Austin Channing Brown

Between the World and Me – Ta-Nehisi Coates

Eloquent Rage: A Black Feminist Discovers Her Superpower – Brittney Cooper

Biased: Uncovering the Hidden Prejudice That Shapes What We See, Think, and Do - Jennifer L. Eberhardt

How to Be Less Stupid About Race: On Racism, White Supremacy, and the Racial Divide – Crystal Marie Fleming

The Second Founding: How the Civil War and Reconstruction Remade the Constitution – Eric Foner

Stony the Road – Henry Louis Gates, Jr.

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

Ida: A Sword Among Lions: Ida B. Wells and the Campaign Against Lynching – Paula Giddings

White Kids: Growing Up with Privilege in Racially Divided America - Margaret Hagerman

Black Looks: Race and Representation – Bell Hooks

The Book of Night Women – Marlon James

This Book Is Anti-Racist: 20 Lessons on How to Wake Up, Take Action, and Do The Work – Tiffany Jewell

They Were Her Property: White Women as Slave Owners in the American South - Stephanie E. Jones Rogers

How to Be an Antiracist – Ibram X. Kendi

Stamped from the Beginning: The Definitive History of Racist Ideas in America – Ibram X. Kendi

Heavy: An American Memoir – Kiese Laymon

Searching for Black Confederates: The Civil War’s Most Persistent Myth – Kevin Levin

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

So You Want to Talk About Race – Ijeoma Oluo

Breathe: A Letter to My Sons – Imani Perry

Citizen: An American Lyric – Claudia Rankine

How the South Won the Civil War - Heather Cox Richardson

Fatal Invention: How Science, Politics, and Big Business Re-create Race in the Twenty-First Century – Dorothy Roberts

The Color of Law: A Forgotten History of How Our Government Segregated America – Richard Rothstein

Me and White Supremacy: Combat Racism, Change the World, and Become a Good Ancestor – Layla Saad

Driving While Black: African American Travel and the Road to Civil Rights - Gretchen Sorin

Just Mercy: A Story of Justice and Redemption – Bryan Stevenson

Why Are All the Black Kids Sitting Together in the Cafeteria?: And Other Conversations About Race – Beverly Daniel Tatum

Color of Compromise: The Truth About the American Church’s Complicity in Racism – Jemar Tisby

Lies My Teacher Told Me: Everything Your American History Textbook Got Wrong – James W. Loewen

Silent Racism – Barbara Trepagnier

Memorial Drive – Natasha Trethewey

Native Guard – Natasha Trethewey

Men We Reaped – Jesmyn Ward

Caste – Isabel Wilkerson

The Warmth of Other Suns: The Epic Story of America's Great Migration – Isabel Wilkerson

What Doesn’t Kill You Makes You Blacker – Damon Young

Young Adult:

Children of Blood and Bone (Legacy of Orisha 1) – Tomi Adeyemi

Children of Virtue and Vengeance (Legacy of Orisha 2) – Tomi Adeyemi

We Are Not Yet Equal: Understanding Our Racial Divide – Carol Anderson and Tonya Bolden

Tyler Johnson Was Here – Jay Coles

The Girl with the Louding Voice: A Novel – Abi Daré

Blended – Sharon M. Draper

This is My America – Kim Johnson

You Should See Me in a Crown – Leah Johnson

I'm Not Dying with You Tonight – Kimberly Jones and Gilly Segal

SLAY – Brittney Morris

Anger is a Gift: A Novel – Mark Oshiro

All American Boys – Jason Reynolds and Brendan Kiely

Stamped: Racism, Antiracism, and You: A Remix of the National Book Award-winning Stamped from the Beginning – Jason Reynolds and Ibram X. Kendi

Dear Martin (Book 1) – Nic Stone

The Hate U Give – Angie Thomas

Piecing Me Together – Renée Watson

A Phoenix First Must Burn: Sixteen Stories of Black Girl Magic, Resistance, & Hope – Patrice Caldwell

Genesis Begins Again – Alicia D. Williams

Brown Girl Dreaming – Jacqueline Woodson

Middle Grade:

March: Book 1 – John Lewis and Andrew Aydin

March: Book 2 – John Lewis and Andrew Aydin

March: Book 3 – John Lewis and Andrew Aydin

The Usual Suspects – Maurice Broaddus

The New Kid – Jerry Craft

Tristan Strong Punches a Hole in the Sky – Kwambe Mbalia

I Am Alfonso Jones – Tony Medina

A Good Kind of Trouble – Lisa Moore Remée

Not My Idea: A Book About Whiteness – Anastasia Higginbotham

Black Brother, Black Brother – Jewell Parker Rhodes

Ghost Boys – Jewel Parker Rhodes

Gone Crazy in Alabama – Rita Williams-Garcia


Counting on Katherine: How Katherine Johnson Saved Apollo 13 – Helaine Becker

Something Happened in Our Town: A Child's Story About Racial Injustice – Marianne Celano, Marietta Collins, and Ann Hazzard

Hair Love – Matthew A. Cherry

Antiracist Baby Picture Book – Ibram X. Kendi

Let’s Talk About Race – Julius Lester

Ready to Fly: How Sylvia Townsend Became the Bookmobile Ballerina – Lea Lyon & Alexandria LaFaye

Separate Is Never Equal: Sylvia Mendez and Her Family's Fight for Desegregation – Duncan Tonatium

A Kids Book About Racism – Jelani Memory


How the Garcia Girls Lost Their Accents – Julia Alvarez

Children of the Land: A Memoir – Marcelo Hernandez Castillo

The House on Mango Street – Sandra Cisneros

Don’t Ask Me Where I’m From – Jennifer De Leon

American Like Me: Reflections on Life Between Cultures – America Ferrera

Shaming into Brown: Somatic Transactions of Race in Latina/o Literature – Stephanie Fetta

White but Not Equal : Mexican Americans, Jury Discrimination, and the Supreme Court – Ignacio M. García

Citizens but Not Americans: Race and Belonging among Latino Millennials – Nilda Flores Gonzáles

Race or Ethnicity?: On Black and Latino Identity – Jorge J.E. Gracia

The Book of Unknown Americans – Cristina Henríquez

Debating Race, Ethnicity, and Latino Identity: Jorge J. E. Gracia and His Critics – Ivan Jaksic

Being Brown : Sonia Sotomayor and the Latino Question – Lazaro Lima

Racism on Trial: The Chicano Fight for Justice – Ian F. Haney López

An African American and Latinx History of the United States – Paul Ortiz

Ignored Racism: White Animus Toward Latinos – Mark D. Ramirez


The Myth of the Model Minority: Asian Americans Facing Racism, Second Edition – Rosalind S. Chou

Two Faces of Exclusion: The Untold History of Anti-Asian Racism in the United States – Lon Kurashige

Giving Form to an Asian and Latinx America – Long Le-Khac