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Community News

In the Community: Black Lives Matter

Every week, Literary Arts staff round up news, events, and more happening in the literary community. This week, we wanted to share antiracist resources and reading recommendations.

Resource Lists

Free Yo Mind: Radical Black Books and Other Critical Stuff (Shared Google Folder)

Justice in June (@Autumn_Bry)
Choose how much time you have each day to become more informed as step one to becoming an active ally to the black community. On this document are links to the learning resources and a schedule of what to do each day.

Resources for Race, Equity, Anti-Racism, and Inclusion (We Need Diverse Books)


Equity Conversations: Oregon’s historical white supremacy structure (Partners in Diversity)
Tuesday, June 9, 1:00 – 2:15 p.m. and 2:45 – 4:00 p.m.

Saeed Jones in conversation with Jennifer Wilks (Texas Book Festival)
Thursday, June 25
7:00 p.m. CST


From Portland’s Hollywood Theater:

Both films below are available for purchase for $6.99 each. All of our proceeds will go toward Don’t Shoot PDX, a citizen advocacy group founded by Teressa Raiford to scrutinize actions of the Portland Police Bureau and protest against racism, police brutality, and state violence. Their direct donation link is here.

I AM NOT YOUR NEGRO–streaming Friday, June 5
In 1979, James Baldwin wrote a letter to his literary agent describing his next project, “Remember This House.” The book was to be a revolutionary, personal account of the lives and assassinations of three of his close friends: Medgar Evers, Malcolm X, and Martin Luther King, Jr. At the time of Baldwin’s death in 1987, he left behind only 30 completed pages of this manuscript. Filmmaker Raoul Peck envisions the book James Baldwin never finished.

WHOSE STREETS?–streaming Friday, June 5
An account of the Ferguson uprising as told by the people who lived it. The filmmakers look at how the killing of 18-year-old Michael Brown inspired a community to fight back and sparked a global movement.

Free and Discounted* E-Books

*At the time of this post

The End of Policing by Alex S. Vitale (Verso) FREE

Against Police Violence: Writers of Conscience Speak Out (Seven Stories Press) FREE

Angels With Dirty Faces: Three Stories of Crime, Prison, and Redemption, by Walidah Imarisha (AK Press) $1.99

Me and White Supremacy: Combat Racism, Change the World, and Become a Good Ancestor by Layla F. Saad (Multnomah County Library)
Always available, no holds or wait time.

The Torture Letters: Reckoning with Police Violence by Laurence Ralph (University of Chicago Press) FREE

Who Do You Serve? Who Do You Protect? Police Violence and Resistance in the United States, edited by Joe Macaré, Maya Schenwar, and Alana Yu-lan Price. Foreword by Alicia Garza (Haymarket Books)
FREE until 6/5

Recommended Reading

12 Black-Owned Bookstores You Can Support Right Now (BuzzFeed Books)

An Antiracist Reading List: Ibram X. Kendi on books to help America transcend its racist heritage. (New York Times)

Decolonize Your Mind (Duende District)

I Have No Mouth, and I Must Scream: The Duty of the Black Writer During Times of American Unrest by Tochi Onyebuchi (Tor.com)

No One Should Have to Ignore Their Grief, Yet It’s Long Been Expected of People of Color by Nadia Owusu (Catapult Magazine)

Several Antiracist Books Are Selling Out. Here’s What Else Black Booksellers and Publishers Say You Should Read (TIME)

What to Read, Watch, and Listen to from Black Artists and Creators This Week (Portland Mercury)

For Kids/ Teens

23 Phenomenal Young Adult Books By Black Authors From The First Half Of 2020 (BuzzFeed Books)

31 Children’s Books to Support Conversations on Race, Racism and Resistance (EduBirdie)

Antiracist Reading For Kids (Powell’s Books)

College Scholarships for Black & African American Students (Education Loan Finance)

Organizations to Support

The Regional Arts & Culture Council (RACC) has developed a list of places your money or your volunteer time can have a direct impact for Black communities — local, regional and national organizations where you can show up, connect, donate, volunteer.

Don’t Shoot Portland 

Black United Fund
For over 30 years, Black United Fund of Oregon has been committed to providing financial support and life-changing programs for low-income communities and communities of color in Oregon. The ultimate goal of the Black United Fund of Oregon (BUF) is to increase opportunities for growth by encouraging philanthropic activity in our state and putting funds in the hands of organizations providing resources for underserved communities. 

Coalition of Communities of Color
The Coalition of Communities of Color’s mission is to address the socioeconomic disparities, institutional racism, and inequity of services experienced by our families, children and communities; and to organize our communities for collective action resulting in social change to obtain self-determination, wellness, justice and prosperity.

The Portland African American Leadership Forum helps our Black community imagine the alternatives we deserve and build our civic participation and leadership to achieve those alternatives.

NAACP of Portland

The NAACP of Portland works to ensure the political, educational, social and economic equality of rights of all persons and eliminating racial hatred and discrimination.

The Urban League of Portland
The Urban League of Portland’s mission is to empower African-Americans and others to achieve equality in education, employment, health, economic security and quality of life.

The MRG Foundation
The MRG Foundation believes in the power of collective action to change the world.

The cover image from this post is available as a t-shirt for $25, with 100% of proceeds going towards Don’t Shoot PDX, Portland General Defense Committee and the Minnesota Freedom Fund. Collaboratively designed by 7-year-old Oz Martine and Oregon Poet Laureate and Literary Arts board member, Anis Mojgani.

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