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New Media We Recommend

April 5, 2013

Below is a list of new materials that we have read/watched in recent weeks. The comments are not a “review” of the material, instead sort of an endorsement of ideas and investigations that can provide solid analysis and even inspiration in the struggle for change. All these items are available at The Bloom Collective, so check them out and stimulate your mind.Kitchen

Behind the Kitchen Door, by Saru Jayaraman – With all the talk about eating healthy and eating local, one would think that there would be lots of discussion about how workers are treated at restaurants. Well, this is exactly what one gets with this new book that exposes the restaurant industry in the US. More importantly, this powerful book is about the experiences and courage of workers who have joined one of the fastest growing unions in the country, the Restaurant Workers Centers United. Restaurant workers are one of the few industries that do not pay minimum wage and utilize a disproportionately large number of recent immigrants, thus allowing them to further take advantage of workers. An excellent book for those who care about justice when eating out, those who care about worker rights and those looking for inspiration from workers who have organized themselves to fight for dignity.


Edible Landscaping, by Rosalind Creasy – This book is packed with ideas for how to use urban space for growing food using non-traditional methods. Challenging the notion that vegetable gardens must be in rows and not mixed with other plant life, this book demonstrates that we all could grow more of our own food and create beautiful urban spaces at the same time. While the book tends to offer some ideas for those with more stable incomes, one can still use the ideas presented to design food-growing spaces wherever they live. Edible Landscaping is a valuable resource for anyone interested in local food production and food justice.antiracism

Everyday AntiRacism: Getting Real About Race in School, edited by Mica Pollock – In Everyday Antiracism leading educators deal with the most challenging questions about race in school, offering invaluable and effective advice. The contributors describe concrete ways to analyze classroom interactions that may or may not be “racial,” deal with racial inequality and “diversity,” and teach to high standards across racial lines. Topics range from using racial incidents as teachable moments and responding to the “n-word” to valuing students’ home worlds, dealing daily with achievement gaps, and helping parents fight ethnic and racial misconceptions about their children. Questions following each essay prompt readers to examine and discuss everyday issues of race and opportunity in their own classrooms and schools. An valuable resource for educators, parents and student who are committed to racial justice.


How Racism Harms White Americans (DVD) – Distinguished historian John H. Bracey Jr. offers a provocative analysis of the devastating economic, political, and social effects of racism on white Americans. In a departure from analyses of racism that have focused primarily on white power and privilege, Bracey trains his focus on the high price that white people, especially working class whites, have paid for more than two centuries of divisive race-based policies and attitudes. Whether he’s discussing the pivotal role slavery played in the war for independence, the two million white Americans who died in a civil war fought over the question of slavery, or how business owners took advantage of the segregation of America’s first labor unions and used low-wage, non-unionized black workers to undercut the bargaining power of white workers, Bracey’s central point is that failing to acknowledge the centrality of race, and racism, to the American project not only minimizes the suffering of black people, but also blinds us to how white people have been harmed as well.


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