Content warning: racism, murder, police brutality
For the past two weeks, protesters have rallied throughout the country to decry the murders of George Floyd, Breonna Taylor, and countless other black Americans killed by law enforcement. We’ve been inspired by our community’s response; thousands marched in Boston on Sunday, and the movement continues to gather momentum.
During that time we’ve also received a staggering number of orders for books on racism, activism, privilege, and intersectional struggle. Unfortunately (but unsurprisingly), many of our favorite titles on those subjects are temporarily sold out nationwide, and publishers are scrambling to reprint them. We’re taking orders through our online store and we’ll get the physical books in your hands as soon as we can, but you can take advantage of these virtual texts right away, at no cost.
The links at the end of the book descriptions below all lead to free editions as of June 8th, 2020, and they only scratch the surface; you can find a wealth of other educational media at the Black History Month Library.
Are Prisons Obsolete?
For generations of Americans, the abolition of slavery was sheerest illusion. Similarly,the entrenched system of racial segregation seemed to last forever, and generations lived in the midst of the practice, with few predicting its passage from custom. The brutal, exploitative (dare one say lucrative?) convict-lease system that succeeded formal slavery reaped millions to southern jurisdictions (and untold miseries for tens of thousands of men, and women). Few predicted its passing from the American penal landscape. Davis expertly argues how social movements transformed these social, political and cultural institutions, and made such practices untenable. Download the free ebook.
Who Do You Serve, Who Do You Protect?
Contributions cover a broad range of issues including the killing by police of black men and women, police violence against Latino and indigenous communities, law enforcement’s treatment of pregnant people and those with mental illness, and the impact of racist police violence on parenting, as well as specific stories such as a Detroit police conspiracy to slap murder convictions on young black men using police informant and the failure of Chicago’s much-touted Independent Police Review Authority, the body supposedly responsible for investigating police misconduct. The title Who Do You Serve, Who Do You Protect? is no mere provocation: the book also explores alternatives for keeping communities safe. Download the free ebook.
The End of Policing
This book attempts to spark public discussion by revealing the tainted origins of modern policing as a tool of social control. It shows how the expansion of police authority is inconsistent with community empowerment, social justice— even public safety. Drawing on groundbreaking research from across the world, and covering virtually every area in the increasingly broad range of police work, Alex Vitale demonstrates how law enforcement has come to exacerbate the very problems it is supposed to solve. Download the free ebook.
The Autobiography of Malcolm X
The Wretched of the Earth
Killing Rage: Ending Racism
Killing Rage speaks to this imbalance. These twenty-three essays are written from a black and feminist perspective, and they tackle the bitter difficulties of racism by envisioning a world without it. They address a spectrum of topics having to do with race and racism in the United States: psychological trauma among African Americans; friendship between black women and white women; anti-Semitism and racism; and internalized racism in movies and the media. And in the title essay, hooks writes about the “killing rage”—the fierce anger of black people stung by repeated instances of everyday racism—finding in that rage a healing source of love and strength and a catalyst for positive change. Download the free ebook.
Police: A Field Guide
Black Feminist Thought
Download the free ebook.