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Book Club: ”How to be an antiracist”
August 26, 2020 at 4:00 pm - 5:00 pm
In a time of mourning and exasperation over the ongoing violence inflicted on Black communities in the US and around the world, it is not enough to be non-racist. We have to strive to be anti-racist, a term coined by Ibram X. Kendi in his book “How to be an antiracist”. Kendi directs our attention to the racist structures of our society and the people who have been hurt by these policies. It allows us to continue having the crucial discussions of structural racism, racial injustice, white supremacy and police brutality in America and around the world.
Since 2018, the Fulbright Commission in Brussels has engaged in a diversity initiative designed to both recruit applicants of underrepresented backgrounds and to better support grantees while in-country. As part of this initiative, Executive Director Erica Lutes will be leading a virtual book club for members of our Fulbright community centering on issues of diversity, inclusion, and representation. Please see below more information about participating in our upcoming discussions.
“Not everything that is faced can be changed, but nothing can be changed until it is faced.” – James Baldwin
Session Two: How to be an antiracist
26 August 2020 | 4:00 PM CET / 10:00 A.M. EST
The second session of our book club will revolve around the book How to be an antiracist by Ibram X.
Why did we choose this book? How to be an antiracist is a book that pushes the limits of our knowledge on the topic of racism and antiracism past awareness and to a realization on how to create an antiracist society. It facilitates discussion on what we can do to change the framework of society and allows for deeper understanding of our personal, often implicit, beliefs.
What is the book about? According to Ibram X. Kendi’s website, the “concept of antiracism re energizes and reshapes the conversation about racial justice in America–but even more fundamentally, points us toward liberating new ways of thinking about ourselves and each other. Instead of working with the policies and system we have in place, Kendi asks us to think about what an antiracist society might look like, and how we can play an active role in building it.
In his memoir, Kendi weaves together an electrifying combination of ethics, history, law, and science–including the story of his own awakening to antiracism–bringing it all together in a cogent, accessible form. He begins by helping us rethink our most deeply held, if implicit, beliefs and our most intimate personal relationships (including beliefs about race and IQ and interracial social relations) and reexamines the policies and larger social arrangements we support. How to Be an Antiracist promises to become an essential book for anyone who wants to go beyond an awareness of racism to the next step of contributing to the formation of a truly just and equitable society.”
What do I need to do in order to participate in the discussion? Participation in the book club is open to all members of the Fulbright community. To register for the discussion or to ask further questions, please send an email to firstname.lastname@example.org. Please note that all participants are expected to have read the book by 18 August. Furthermore, as our aim is to create a safe space for people of all backgrounds to engage in difficult conversations, all participants are requested to remain open and cooperative and to treat their fellow participants with respect.