This page is for my notes on This Book Is AntiRacist by Tiffany Jewell and illustrated by Aurelia Durand


I will preceed these public notes with the statement that I am white, and I grew up in a predominantly white community. i think we had only two black kids, and a couple of asian kids in my grade growing up. I went to a college in boston which was more diverse, however I did not socialise with much of anyone during my college career. I do my best to acknowledge my privledge, and to be anti-racist. However, I know i benefit from the current systems. I am nonbinary, but i am very sheltered, I dont go out often. My local pride parade is primarily for children, its a little fair rather than a celebration of queer identities. I am in a queer relationship, but we dont go out often, we dont face homophobia regularly.

Jewell's use of Folx instead of folks is interesting, considering my understanding of folks is that it is already gender neutral. This book contains a glossary which is very useful.

section 1: Waking Up

its interesting how many white people believe they are in the 'box' of middle class, but would actually be considered under the poverty line. I grew up with a single parent (my father). we qualified for the free lunches when I was younger, but we didnt recieve a large amount of financial aid. I worked summers during college to afford tuition, however I never worried about food or clothes.

I will not be making an identity map here, as I dont need to tell the world my identities, but it is something ive always thought about. My queerness doesnt fit into boxes, I am simply myself.

Dominant Culture - The group of people who hold the most power/are the majority. in the United States: White, Middle Class, Christian, Cisgender. They control the institutions/established the norm.

Race is not a scientific category, but a social classification. Ethnicity is your cultural identity. I never really considered that other countires have different racial categories.

This books definition of racism: Personal prejudice and bias and the systemic misuse and abuse of power by institiutions. The lack of people of color in the media is an example of systemic racism, and when they do appear they often fit a stereotype, reaffirming peoples biases. The black panther party are why I was able to get free lunches at school when my family was struggling, yet we never learned this history.

Elon Musk benefitted directly from Aparthid. The School to Prison Pipeline.

Section 2: Opening the Window

I dont think ive ever comitted a racial microaggression. in one of my classes in college, there was a black girl with beautiful colored braids, and I loved to look at them. one day after class I asked if they were dyed, and she said no, it was fake. I hope she didnt see that as a microaggression.

I feel like i barely learned about slavery in other countries in high school. In my black studies course in college we also primarily covered american black history.

My father and his 6 siblings were all sent to private schools as Boston desegregated its schools, and bussed black students into predominantly white schools. They all attended parochial schools, until my fathers last few years of high school, where he still went to a private high school. My grandmother had high hopes for president Obama, and I've never seen her express racist beliefs, but again, I never would have heard these beliefs in my predominantly white community.

Section 3: Choosing My Path

This book is aimed towards young adults, so it talks about what you should do if you see injustice in your school. I dont know what I would do in an actively dangerous situation. Something to think about. My form of actively being anti racist may just be trying to be informed, signing petitions, and listening to the BIPOC voices around me.

"Comfort will not end racism"

section 4: holding the door open

I need to spend my privledge to help undo racism. I do just need to focus on amplifying BIPOC voices, and step aside. Allyship.

Closing Thoughts

This book is very good, and eye opening to what the paths are as someone trying to be anti-racist. Its directed more towards youths, and will do good at getting them engaged in social justice. I maybe should have chosen a more adult oriented book.

further reading: