Read, Watch, Listen

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READ: Broke: The Racial Consequences of Underfunding Public Universities

University of California, Merced scholars Laura T. Hamilton and Kelly Nielsen explore how underrepresented students are negatively affected by a higher education system that increasingly targets them for recruitment while failing to provide the services they need to succeed. Hamilton and Nielsen focus specifically on campuses within their own university system to show how postsecondary education has evolved from relying on the tax dollars of the many to fund the education of an elite few to become the underfunded, yet more diverse — if not inclusive — institutions of today. Broke ends with a plea and proposed plan for breaking this cycle as well as a methodological appendix by the authors — both White — on how they approach the study of race. Published by University of Chicago Press

WATCH: Giving Voice

Giving Voice documents the experiences of thousands of high school students from diverse backgrounds as they audition for the annual August Wilson Monologue Competition, which celebrates Wilson’s 10-play American Century Cycle. The playwright behind Fences and Ma Rainey’s Black Bottom, Wilson was revered for his ability to capture the Black American experience on stage. As Giving Voice reveals, his work continues to inspire and empower a new generation of underrepresented performers. Available on Netflix

LISTEN: Code Switch: A Decade of Watching Black People Die

The wildly popular podcast Code Switch — which centers on race, identity, and society — hit a milestone on June 1 when it reached the top spot on Apple’s podcast chart one day after airing the episode “A Decade of Watching Black People Die.” The 22-minute segment, released less than a week after the police killing of George Floyd, reflects on prior coverage of the murder of African Americans at the hands of law enforcement to illustrate how violence towards Black people has become normalized in the U.S. The episode’s historical significance also recently landed it the number two spot on Spotify’s hand-picked 2020 Podcast Hall of Fame list. Available on npr.org/podcasts and all major podcast apps

This article was published in our March 2021 issue.