Top Anti-Racism Articles of 2021

Sharon’s Anti-Racism Newsletter - the articles you most read, shared and discussed

Hello friends,

What a year - am I right? I’ll reflect on everything that’s happened in another article, but for now I want to share the articles that most resonated with you this year.

Though some older articles got renewed attention in 2021, I’ve limited this to articles published within 2021. In addition, this list does not include reading list posts or updates on what I’ve been up to during the year. As usual, I’ve included a quote from each of them. Here’s 2021’s hotlist:

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“Despite the fact that a great deal of financial power and social influence still rest in the hands of the white descendants of the colonizers, for many there’s still a deep vein of resentment towards the descendants of the people they enslaved.”

“Being a Black person moving into predominantly white spaces is like exiting warp and finding you’re surrounded by the Borg (yes, I’m a Trekkie). You don’t know exactly what’s going to happen, but you strongly suspect it won’t work out in your favor.”

“Earlier this year, I posted my response to a reader wanting to diversify their kids’ bookshelves. … I asked at the time for more recommendations from subscribers. Here are the books they recommended.”

“Black people have been on this not so merry-go-round many times: HR will make a note of their complaint, but suddenly their formerly exemplary record is tarnished because their performance has become a problem. They might be denied a raise or an opportunity, or put back on probation.”

“As far as I’m concerned, talking to trolls is a waste of my time and energy. I will never change their minds, so I’m focusing on those who want to learn and grow.”

“Suppression remains a BIG problem. For example, on the day of the Rittenhouse verdict, I wrote a brief post, but had to go to the post to see comments - no notifications came up. It’s as if it didn’t exist.”

“Immediately after the murders, the media playbook came out. You know, the one that comes out whenever an angry young white man in America murders someone who isn’t white. We’ve seen it most often in relation to the killing of Black people, but it’s the same damn playbook.”

“Early on in the life of this newsletter, I shared some resources I’d found useful for talking about and explaining various aspects of anti-racism work. Since then, I’ve been bookmarking stuff as I’ve come across it, and now I’m ready to share again.”

“What grinds Black people about this case is the clear evidence of a dual justice system. It's not so much about Rittenhouse being convicted. It's the fact that a Black man in his situation wouldn't have been alive to face trial.”

“No matter how British those Black players were considered as the team played their hearts out to reach the final, for some, that came with conditions. Specifically, thou shalt win as a Black man or thou shalt not be British.”

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“The stare has a long history, dating back to when the colonizers took over whole countries, then decreed in law and by force, who could go where. It was present after the traffickers in enslaved people brought them to the Americas, then made sure they were only allowed in certain spaces.”

“Most of the history you learn in white majority countries gives a superficial view of the role and accomplishments of Black people through the ages, if they cover them at all. And that history also tends to reinforce the narrative of conquest, civilization, enslavement and benign liberation that underpins much of the colonial story. So yeah, why shouldn’t Black people opt out?”

“Another source of joy - despite the trauma of a continuing litany of Black deaths - has been my work with Omnis Education. I can’t overstate how much it means to be working with a team so aligned on the issues of anti-racism and education, both of which I care about deeply.”

“Expressing guilt or shame doesn’t benefit people most affected by racism. In fact, Black and brown people sometimes find ourselves sidetracked from expressing or healing our own trauma in order to soothe white people’s hurt feelings.”

“If there’s one thing we as Black people know for sure, it’s that there will be other Ahmauds, other Elijahs, other Sandras, other Breonnas. And we know that we’ll have to face the trauma of their death over and over again.”

Thank you for subscribing, reading, sharing, and commenting this past year. Onward to 2022!


© Sharon Hurley Hall, 2021. All Rights Reserved.

Cover photo courtesy of Canva.

I am an anti-racism writer, a professional B2B writer and blogger, and co-host of The Introvert Sisters podcast. If you value my perspective, please consider upgrading to a paid subscription.

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