Well, I resolved to start this feature a few weeks ago as a weekly offering on the blog and did not follow through. Nothing to do, but start again. Here are some ideas for your reading and watching pleasure this week.
First and foremost, everyone should read the New York Times 1619 Project . It came out in print last Sunday in the Magazine and is a series of essays, poems, short fiction, and photographs that bring to light how little most of America, particularly White America, understands about the role slavery and Jim Crowe have played in the economic success of the U.S. Further, it documents the deliberate choices that have been made over and over again to keep Black Americans from full opportunity and citizenship. It is upsetting and sad and real and important. It is also dense. I’ve been reading it over the course of the week and am about 3/4 of the way through. This is history we all should know but many have not learned. Let’s remedy that. Truth-telling is important.
Next, take a moment to watch this clip that features a friend and colleague from Duke, Jeffery Swanson on ABC . Jeff has been all over the news lately, a testament to a life of strong scholarship that is making a difference. With the inappropriate convolution of mental health problems and mass shootings, Jeff’s life’s work of understanding what links, if any, exist between mental illness and violence, is having a moment. Bravo!
Finally, we all need a bit of escape these days. If you’re a mystery lover like me and have not tried Louise Penny’s Three Pines series featuring her soulful detective from the Surete’ de Quebec, Amand Gamache, hurry out to a local bookstore like our Chapel Hill favorite Flyleaf Books to see what you’ve been missing!