A Short Account of the Destruction of the Indies (Spanish: Brevísima relación de la destrucción de las Indias) is an account written by the Spanish Dominican friar Bartolomé de las Casas in 1542 (published in 1552) about the mistreatment of and atrocities committed against the indigenous peoples of the Americas in colonial times and sent to then Prince Philip II of Spain.
Dr. Ibram X. Kendi, Ph.D. is an award-winning historian, a prolific public intellectual, and a 2019 inductee as a Guggenheim Fellow. His first book, The Black Campus Movement, won the prestigious W.E.B. DuBois Book Prize, while his second book, Stamped from the Beginning, won the 2016 National Book Award for Nonfiction. He is currently a professor of History and International Relations at American University. He is the founding director of the Antiracist Research & Policy Center now at Boston University.
We knew that the story of Katrina and its aftermath in New Orleans was a crucial one to tell. We knew that it was a way to explore our climate future, and our relationship with nature itself. We knew that it would help explain issues of race and class, and truth and lies. But we did not know then how chillingly relevant it would be. Katrina marked a breakpoint in the history of our country, a moment when Americans came to understand that, sometimes, the cavalry isn't coming.
Floodlines, the mesmerizing podcast series that grew out of these conversations, is The Atlantic’s first foray into narrative audio. For 163 years, The Atlantic has specialized in great storytelling; Floodlines builds on this tradition. Vann, Katherine, and their team have taken a story we think we know and have made it dramatically, shockingly, new. They unearth human stories that take us to the heart of the tragedy; they investigate the failures of politicians and the media; and they question the officials who were in charge: the tormented former police chief of New Orleans, and the former FEMA chief Michael Brown—“Brownie”—among them. They achieve something great here, the deepest understanding of what Vann calls “an unnatural disaster.”
The culmination of several decades of independent and collaborative research by scholars drawing upon data in libraries and archives around the Atlantic world. The new Voyages website itself is the product of three years of development by a multi-disciplinary team of historians, librarians, curriculum specialists, cartographers, computer programmers, and web designers, in consultation with scholars of the slave trade from universities in Europe, Africa, South America, and North America.
From Smithsonian magazine articles on slavery’s Trail of Tears and the disturbing resilience of scientific racism to the National Museum of American History’s collection of Black History Month resources for educators and a Sidedoor podcast on the Tulsa Race Massacre, these 158 resources are designed to foster an equal society, encourage commitment to unbiased choices and promote antiracism in all aspects of life. Listings are bolded and organized by category.
Being Antiracist - National Museum of African American History and Culture
"In a racist society, it is not enough to be non-racist, we must be anti-racist."
ANGELA Y. DAVIS
Race does not biologically exist, yet how we identify with race is so powerful, it influences our experiences and shapes our lives. In a society that privileges white people and whiteness, racist ideas are considered normal throughout our media, culture, social systems, and institutions. Historically, racist views justified the unfair treatment and oppression of people of color (including enslavement, segregation, internment, etc.). We can be led to believe that racism is only about individual mindsets and actions, yet racist policies also contribute to our polarization. While individual choices are damaging, racist ideas in policy have a wide-spread impact by threatening the equity of our systems and the fairness of our institutions. To create an equal society, we must commit to making unbiased choices and being antiracist in all aspects of our lives.
Understanding the present moment requires grappling with a history stained by racial inequity, violence, and the constant fight for forward progress. In a century and a half of writing stories about race in America, The Atlantic has published works that have improved the broad understanding of injustice in America, and also works that furthered ideas and theories that ultimately were proved wrong or harmful. To comprehend the current state of the country, we must consider the aftereffects of both categories. We must also take into account the fact that these stories, in aggregate, are overwhelmingly written by men.
The following reader encompasses writing on race and racism that spans The Atlantic’s lifetime—from our founding, in 1857, to the present day. In it you’ll find historical works from the archive, as well as more recent stories that provide critical analysis to contextualize the importance of a given event, policy, or era.
This website is a web-based version of a workbook designed originally to support the Dismantling Racism workshop offered by Dismantling Racism Works, a training collaborative that is not offering workshops or consulting support at this time. The workshop was one step in a longer process developed initially by Kenneth Jones and Tema Okun over three decades ago.
Vision & Justice: Visual Representation As It Defines American Citizenship and Belonging
This Vision & Justice Project is organized around a guiding question: How has visual representation both limited and liberated our definition of American citizenship and belonging? Today, as we are awash with images through the scale of technology and live in an increasingly polarized climate in the United States—sociologists tell us that we come into close contact with those who do not share our political and religious views less and less—it is increasingly pictures: photographs, videos, films that show us worlds unlike our own. The Vision & Justice Project wrestles with the question of how the foundational right of representation in a democracy, the right to be recognized justly, has historically and is still urgently tied to the work of visual representation in the public realm.
The past is never past. Every headline has a history. Join us every week as we go back in time to understand the present. These are stories you can feel and sounds you can see from the moments that shaped our world.