Black teens face racism daily. From white people looking at them as though they don’t belong to police killings that spark mass demonstrations for racial equality – such experiences can be disempowering and stressful for a young person, yet many teens, such as the ones interviewed for this story, find resilience within themselves to fight back against injustice.
Alice Walker was an educator and civil rights activist, known as one of the pioneers for African American women’s rights. She founded two major black political action groups and wrote A Raisin in the Sun – winning her a Pulitzer Prize – as well as co-founding one of America’s first black newspapers, The Pittsburgh Courier.
This film about a Black teenager witnessing the fatal police shooting of her friend is unabashedly and powerfully confronting. While some historical violence and language might be present, it remains an exciting drama with wonderful performances.
Yoli Anyon, a social worker who studies how people cope with challenges, believes it’s crucial for kids and teens to be exposed to “indicators of oppression” such as racism so they understand they’re not alone in their struggle. She cautions that exposure must also include positive messages about self-esteem and black pride to achieve balance in exposure.
From illustrated biographies to rarely seen profiles, these books offer children and teenagers an in-depth exploration and celebration of Black American history. Perfect reads for Black History Month as well as throughout the year!