Saturday, February 23, 2008

Reading is Fundamental Relating is Optional

Transracial adoption is becoming common and normal. As families decide to step off into the deep water they ask many questions. Before concluding that race doesn't really matter, I think at a minimum families should understand American history from the perspective of people of color. No one asked me what they might read that explores the history and effects of race on the development of identity. If they did, I would suggest the following:

Books
  • All Gods Children a book by Fox Butterworth
  • Company Man by Brent Wade
  • Warriors Don't Cry by Melba Patillo Beals (The Other Side)
  • Black & White Styles in Conflict by Tom Kochman
    (Read a review)
  • Shifting: The Double Lives of Black Women in America
  • Member of the Club by Lawrence Otis Graham
  • Our Kind of People by Lawrence Otis Graham
  • The Rage of a Privileged Class by Ellis Cose
  • Best Intentions: The Education of Edmund Perry by Robert Sam Anson
Films
  • Imitation of Life (the Lana Turner version)
  • Good Fences
  • The Delaney Sisters
  • Finding Forrester
  • The Ditch Diggers Daughter
  • Boycott
  • The Long Walk Home
  • Standing On My Sisters Shoulders
  • The Human Stain
  • The Great Debaters
These are not books or films that tell you how to raise your children but instead they show you the effects. Most have a historical context, where a few are more contemporary. The themes are similar. When and if you read or watch, try to do so by actually putting yourself in the story. Be the person that you think represents your child in the story. Feel free to add to the list.

3 comments:

ManyBlessings said...

I've got this list bookmarked. Thanks.
d

Don't Mess With Mommy said...

Thank you for this.

Tami said...

Imitation of Life is my favorite movie!!!!!!!!!! I cry everytime!

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