Racism awareness: a summer book study

Guest post by
Rachel Bush, deacon at Ann Arbor CRC

Over the past couple years I have been working hard to educate myself and struggle with my own personal role in racism. I found I have deep seeded tendencies and beliefs that I was not aware of being problematic until I took the time to read, weep, become angry, and admit that I’m not as anti-racist as I thought. The change begins within. My personal journey has occurred over the past three years as I have been moderating an Ann Arbor book club focusing on Race Relations. With the blessing of the AACRC Social Justice Committee and our pastors, I am now offering to moderate a 3-book summer series on the topic of racism. The three books that I picked out for this mini-series happen to be the first three books I read on my own personal journey:

  • Waking Up White: And Finding Myself in the Story of Race by Debbie Irving (a more relatable read)
  • The New Jim Crow: Mass Incarceration in the Age of Colorblindness by Michelle Alexander (a tough but important read)
  • The Hate U Give by Angie Thomas (a young adult fiction read)

Participants will be asked to read each book in its entirety before attending the corresponding 2 hour group discussion time for the book. Three options to meet per book will be provided in order to try to make this book study possible for more people.

  • Waking Up White will be discussed the week of July 13.
  • The New Jim Crow will be discussed the week of August 10.
  • The Hate U Give will be discussed the week of August 24.

Meeting days and times for each of those weeks are Mondays, 1-3pm; Wednesdays, 6-8pm; and Saturdays, 10-noon.

Please sign up via this link.  Although it is not necessary to read all three books, it is recommended that you do so (even if you are not able to attend all three discussion sessions) as a deliberate and dedicated commitment towards truly putting the work in to tackling our own preconceptions, contribution to, and misunderstanding of race relations in the United States.

Discussions will take place at the outdoor pavilion at the Northfield Township Area Library in Whitmore Lake (125 Barker Road, Whitmore Lake, MI 48189). This location is just off of US-23 and is less than a 15 minute drive from AACRC. The large outdoor shelter will allow us to properly distance during this time of COVID and provide shelter in the case of rain. If you have any questions about this opportunity, please contact Rachel Bush.

Hope you can join us!