Summer 2021 Reading List

2021 Inclusive Excellence Summer Reading List

There is no greater agony than bearing an untold story inside of you. 
- Maya Angelou 

As is the ODI tradition, this 2021 list is curated in the spirit of our ongoing efforts to affirm, ally for solidarity, and act in the pursuit of racial equity and justice and make SU a thriving place for all. This consequential year revealed the depth of the gulf of understandings of our shared history and the present manifestations.

There is no shortage of impactful reads for sure; and many are included in past summer reading lists. I hope these new offerings inspire reflection on how we make meaning, as well as context for more authentic conversations and actions in creating a stronger university and a more just world.

Caveat: Reading alone is insufficient to realize our shared vision for an inclusive and equitable university. Yet, without widening perspectives progress remains elusive. Please continue to share your ideas of resources from research and enlightening reads over summer and beyond to

Finally, colleagues, we must take care of ourselves to maintain strength for the journey toward justice. I wish you time to rest, restore, and to experience joy this summer. Stay safe and be well.

Summer Reading List

Curated by the Office of Diversity and Inclusion, Seattle University

  • On Juneteenth by Annette Gordon-Reed

  • The Second: Race and Guns in a Fatally Unequal America by Carol Anderson

  • Caste: The Origins of Our Discontents by Isabel Wilkerson

  • The Undocumented Americans by Karla Cornejo Villavicencio

  • Just Us: An American Conversation by Claudia Rankin

  • America for Americans: A History of Xenophobia in the United States by Erika Lee

  • Dear America: Notes of an Undocumented Citizen by Jose Antonio Vargas (Common Text 2021-2022 Academic Year)

  • Not Quite Not White: Losing and Finding Race in America by Sharmila Sen 

  • One Life by Megan Rapinoe

  • Every Day is a Gift: A Memoir by Tammy Duckworth

  • Afterlife: A Novel by Julia Alvarez

  • White Tears/Brown Scars: How White Feminism Betrays Women of Color by Ruby Hamad 

  • The Three Mothers: How the Mothers of Martin Luther King, Jr. Malcolm X, and James Baldwin Shaped a Nation by Anna Malaika Tubbs

  • Uncomfortable Conversations with a Black Man by Emmanuel Acho

  • The Sum of Us: What Racism Costs Everyone and How We Can Prosper Together by Heather McGhee

  • Better, Not Bitter: Living on Purpose in the Pursuit of Racial Justice by Yusef Salaam

  • Time to Teach: A History of the Southern Civil Rights Movement by Julian Bond

  • As Long as Grass Grows: The Indigenous Fight for Environmental Justice, from Colonization to Standing Rock by Dina Gilio-Whitaker

  • Wilmington’s Lie: The Murderous Coup of 1898 and the Rise of White Supremacy by David Zucchino - Winner of the 2021 Pulitzer Prize

  • Disability Visibility: First-Person Stories from the Twenty-First Century by Alice Wong

  • A Peculiar Indifference: The Neglected Toll of Violence on Black America by Elliott Currie

  • America’s Racial Karma: An Invitation to Heal by Larry Ward

  • The Three-Cornered War: The Union, The Confederacy, and Native People’s in the Fight for the West by Megan Kate Nelson

  • How the Word Is Passed: A Reckoning with the History of Slavery Across America by Clint Smith

  • Whereas: Poems by Layli Long Soldier