Black History Month Resource List

“Citation is how we acknowledge our debt to those who came before; those who helped us find our way when the way was obscured because we deviated from the paths we were told to follow.” — Sara Ahmed

We’ve curated a list of resources that celebrate those who have paved new paths for the Black community. We hope that you enjoy these resources this Black History Month and throughout the year. Most of these resources can be accessed via our Lending Library, which is free for Professional, Lifetime, Affiliate, and Sexual and Domestic Violence Agency members of The Action Alliance.

  • Affrilachia, by Frank X Walker
    • Frank X Walker’s path-breaking book of poems Affrilachia is a classic of Appalachian and African-American literature. Walker created the word “Affrilachia” to help make visible the experience of African Americans living in the rural and Appalachian South. The book is widely used in classrooms and is one of the foundational works of the Affrilachian Poets, a community of writers offering fresh ways to think about diversity in the Appalachian region and beyond.

      Affrilachia by Frank X Walker
  • At the Dark End of the Street: Black Women, Rape, and Resistance – a New History of the Civil Rights Movement from Rosa Parks to the Rise of Black Power, by Danielle McGuire
    • In this groundbreaking and important book, Danielle McGuire writes about the rape in 1944 of a twenty-four-year-old mother and sharecropper, Recy Taylor, who strolled toward home after an evening of singing and praying at the Rock Hill Holiness Church in Abbeville, Alabama. Seven white men, armed with knives and shotguns, ordered the young woman into their green Chevrolet, raped her, and left her for dead.
  • Between the World and Me, by Ta-Nehisi Coates
    • Beautifully woven from personal narrative, reimagined history, and fresh, emotionally charged reportage, Between the World and Me, clearly illuminates the past, bracingly confronts our present, and offers a transcendent vision for a way forward.
  • Black Feminist Thought, by Patricia Hill Collins
    • Explores the words and ideas of Black feminist intellectuals as well as those of African-American women outside academe.  She provides an interpretive framework for the works of Angela Davis, bell hooks, Alice Walker, Audre Lord, and others.

      Black Feminist Thought by Patricia Hill Collins
  • Black Girl Dangerous, by Mia McKenzie
    • Mia McKenzie, the creator of the enormously popular website Black Girl Dangerous, writes about race, queerness, class, and gender in a concise, compelling voice filled at different times with humor, grief, rage, and joy. In this collection of her work, McKenzie’s nuanced analysis of intersecting systems of oppression goes deep to reveal the complicated truths of a multiply-marginalized experience. McKenzie tackles the hardest questions of our time with clarity and courage, in language that is accessible to non-academics and academics alike. She is both fearless and vulnerable, demanding and accountable.
  • Deals With the Devil, by Pearl Cleage
    • In a direct manner, the author of this book deals with issues of African American life and racism.  She also explores the point where racism and sexism meet.  This book gives new insight into our world.
  • Domestic Violence at the Margins, by Natalie J. Sokolofff
    • This groundbreaking anthology reorients the field of domestic violence research by bringing long-overdue attention to the structural forms of oppression in communities marginalized by race, ethnicity, religion, sexuality, or social class.

      Domestic Violence at the Margins by Natalie J. Sokoloff
  • Gift of Black Folk, by W.E. DuBois
    • Du Bois recounts the history of African Americans and their many unsung contributions to American society. He chronicles their role in the early exploration of America, their part in developing the country s agricultural industry, their courage on the battlefields, and their creative genius in virtually every aspect of American culture. He also highlights the contributions of black women, proposing that their freedom could lead to freedom for all women.
  • Household Workers Unite: The Untold Story of African American Women Who Built A Movement, by Premilla Nadasen
    • Resurrecting a little-known history of domestic-worker activism from the 1950s to the 1970s, Nadasen shows how these women were a far cry from the stereotyped passive and powerless victims; they were innovative labor organizers who tirelessly organized on buses and streets across the United States to bring dignity and legal recognition to their occupation.
  • Invisible No More, by Andrea J. Ritchie
    • Invisible No More is a timely examination of how Black women, Indigenous women, and women of color experience racial profiling, police brutality, and immigration enforcement. Placing stories of individual women—such as Sandra Bland, Rekia Boyd, Dajerria Becton, Monica Jones, and Mya Hall–in the broader context of the twin epidemics of police violence and mass incarceration, it documents the evolution of movements centering women’s experiences of policing and demands a radical rethinking of our visions of safety—and the means we devote to achieving it.

      Invisible No More by Andrea Ritchie
  • Just Mercy, by Bryan Stevenson
    • A powerful, bold true story about the potential for mercy to redeem us, and a clarion call to fix America’s broken system of justice
  • Knowing Our History: ​Blackness and the Anti-Violence Movement, by Calvin Hall
    • This self-guided training opportunity centers the history of anti-violence efforts in the Black community, from slavery to the present. Through engagement with an interactive timeline, you will examine the varied ways in which Black Americans have both experienced and fought against oppression over the course of American history. Lastly, implications for your daily work and life will be discussed.
  • Mental Health in Black America, by Harold Neighbors and James Jackson
    • Essays detail the self-reported stress of being black in America and document the cultural resources African Americans draw upon to overcome adversity and maintain a positive, healthy perspective on life.  Beginning with a discussion of black life satisfaction and the broad psychological and sociological factors that affect it, the book then explores how these factors contribute to behavioral health problems and diseases. Problem-solving strategies are also discussed.

  • New Jim Crow: Mass Incarceration in the Age of Colorblindness, by Michelle Alexander
    • Although Jim Crow laws have been wiped off the books, an astounding percentage of the African American community remains trapped in a subordinate status—much like their grandparents before them.
  • Our Souls to Keep: Black/White Relations in America, by George Henderson
    • Examination of black culture and history, including the aftereffects of slavery, black identity, communication, and values.
  • Phenomenal Woman: Four Poems Celebrating Women, by Maya Angelou
    • Four of Maya Angelou’s most highly acclaimed poems are assembled in this book:  Phenomenal Woman, Still I Rise, Weekend Glory, and Our Grandmothers.

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