This fall, the Office of Equity and Inclusion (OEI) will be expanding its learning community book groups with the addition of “How to be an Antiracist” by Ibram Kendi. In addition to Kendi’s book, OEI is continuing discussion groups for “What if I Say the Wrong Thing?” by Verna Myers and “Braving the Wilderness” by Brene Brown.
All in the UMass community are welcome to join a book group and have the opportunity to form new learning community groups throughout the year.
“Collectively, the goals of this book groups are to learn how to have difficult conversations and engage more respectfully when disagreeing, to better understand difference all around us, to genuinely and regularly challenge taken-for-granted assumptions and beliefs about ourselves and others, and most importantly to build relationships with one another.”
Throughout the semester, participants will meet regularly via Zoom to recognize challenges and develop tools for more thoughtful interaction across difference, understand how our attempts at finding connections and building communities can also lead to polarization, and to understand the roots of racism and bias and ways we can work to dismantle it. These foundational concepts and skills are vital in our road to building an inclusive community grounded in dignity and respect.