Black Cultural Awareness Menu (an intro)

I’ve been serving and working w/individuals and groups around civil rights, cultural awareness and privilege over the years. In response to requests, we offer this reviewed, imperfect, evolving menu of Black-related links and how-to’s for you to engage, research, use as an ice breaker, take action and serve. It doesn’t list genocides, interments and other atrocities inflicted on many groups. This is a simple start–a sampling of the vast knowledge, wisdom and history available in libraries & online. Shifting your list of links can shift your search engines, and your perspectives. Share this list or build your own. Hope it serves our shared and individual journeys at this raw, transformational time. 

All links are healthy, free, (pls support authors/orgs). No one “digests” the same, so starters are lighter. If you’re courageous, start w/the Kid’s Menu. Take in Health-Drinks (series) bit by bit, or as marathons.  Laugh, cry, learn, act, & share far & wide. Peace, health & safety to you & yours.  


Starters: (edu-comedy, etc.)

TED: More Than Funny–Comedic educator Michael Jr. (watch to the end).

Vid: How to be an Ally–Comedic educator, series producer, actor Evelyn Ngugi.

Vid series: Say it Loud comedy, history & education; Why Richard Pryor is still funny   

Vid: (profanity) Hollywood Whitewashing-How is this still a thing? series. Last Week Tonight. 

Vid: Comedian/writer/actor Amber Ruffin stars in the trailer White Savior 

Vid Series: (profanity) Liberal Redneck–comic commentator Tray Crowder on Black Lives Matter 

Music Vid: Lift Every Voice Stanford T. Alumni Virtual Choir (aka Black National Anthem

Young person’s article re: The National Anthem  NPR: NFL will add Lift Every Voice.


Health-Drinks & Smoothies (popular series): 

Series: PBS’s edu-comedy “Say It Loud”: Are You “Black” or “African American”? 
With Evelyn Ngugi, Hallease Clemons, Navarez Azie, Mira Dangey, and Christopher Navarez.  

Series: Uncomfortable Conversations with a Black Man by Emanuel Acho. 

Series: Queer Eye fun Inspiration, transformation & bridge-building (trailer) and excerpts

Series: Dear White People (comedy) 2014 and Review by Ivy-league black woman filmmaker.

Series: PBS-Brief/Spectacular When I Try to Talk Race with White People. Reni Eddo Lodge. 

Series: Blackish (review of the Blackish episode on colorism) by commentator “For Harriet”. 

Series: Calling in Black (comedy). How A Panic Attack Inspired My CIB Video Evelyn Ngugi.

Series: (profanity) How to be a Nerd, Asian BLM activist & Why Comedian Hasan Minhaj 

Series: The Grapevine (adult)–A conversation with Black, LGBTQ Millenials 

Series: Review of popular TV series: Five favorite Black-lead shows 

Series: The Daily Show w/Trevor Noah; Police Also Loot–Black Bodies–every day

How to be an Ally (and other How To’s)
Vid: How to be an Ally, by Chescaleigh

Vid: How to be an Ally—Don’t by Sensei Aishitemasu 

Vid: How to be an Ally, Not a A Savoir, by Graciela Mohamadi

Blog: Performative Allyship is Deadly (Here’s what to do instead)  

Bid: Wash Post: How to be anti-racist; it’s more than books, quotes and Blackout Tuesday

Vid: TEDx Intersectional Allyship w/many diverse groups by host/speaker Ashlee Marie Preston.

Vid: Being nice is not going to end racism Robin DiAngelo and Deconstructing White Priv.

Vid:(RISE District) Seeing White Fragility & going beyond it 

Book: White Fragility: Why it’s so hard for white people to talk racism  by Robin DiAngelo

Vid: The Strong Black Womann trope explained and recent shifts into diverse narratives. 

TED: How to Outsmart Your Own Unconscious Bias by Author, Speaker, CEO Valerie Alexander

Book/Vid: Aspen Institute; Professor Ibram Kendi on how to undo racism, becoming anti-racist 

TED: How to push through implicit bias by Melanie Funchess of the Mental Health Association

TED: Call out hair touching; No You Cannot Touch My Hair Mena Fombo #DONTTOUCH

TED: Prof. Tiffany Russell: Social/Technological (Womanism-based) Problem-solving Strategies 

Series: Self Care for Activists with Angela Davis   

TED: Get Comfortable w/Being Uncomfortable–3 Q’s to ask yourself; Author, speaker Luvvie Ajayi 

Vid: The Simple, Generous Origins of Black Lives Matter Jamil Smith & Robert Reich 

TED: 50 Years of Racism — Why silence isn’t the answer. Consultant James A. White Sr. 

TED: The Cost of Code Switching–App founder & CEO Chandra Arthur. 

PBS Amanpour & Co Distinguishing “not-racist” neutrality vs “anti-racist” in activism. 

TED: The Power of Privilege: by prolific author, founder of TMI Consulting Inc. Tiffany Jana 

TED:  White Men: Time to discover your cultural Blind Spots (and how to)–Michael Welp.

The Kid’s Menu (for kids & adults)

Vid: Black parents explain How to deal with Police  

Book/Program: All American Boys; by Black/White authors Jason Reynolds & Brendan Kiely.  (Co-authors’ talk starts at 5:00) and  Young Bryce Cook’s reading and here 

Schoolyard Rap Series: Music Video: Black Made That! and The Bill of Rights

Books: This Book is Anti-Racist also Raising Anti-racist Kids, and Not raising an Amy Cooper

TED: Why Black Lives Matter Now by young Ellis Fearon.

Vid/Research: CNN;  Kids speak their minds about race.  a  book on race  and a book on racism 

Vids: Home SchoolingNext School Series, SXSW Panel Discussion, TED and Khan Academy 

Articles: Racism and Microaggressions in Transracial adoption   Adoptive & Foster Family Coalition


Main Courses: (broken down by subject)

Inquiry, Panel Discussions & Personal Experiences

Series: The Most Important Conversation in 2020 Diverse Black panel discussion; multi-topic.

MSNBC: My Body is a Confederate Monument w/Caroline Randall Williams 

Series: Panel; Being Black in Corporate America; code-switching choices, stresses, etc.

Vid: (Pero Like) Series; Afro-Latinos have a conversation on blackness with their parents

Vid: Young vlogger Tarek Ali distinguishes White Pride and Black Pride 

Vid: ABC; Violence against trans Women And an in-depth panel discussion on the problem

Vid:  Birdwatching while Black– Professor J. Drew Lanham Vid. on his tireless contributions

TED: Author, producer poet Theo E.J. Wilson: Black Male Privilege and the Me Too Movement 

Vid: “Let’s talk about” series: Unintended MAGA-hat lessons Frank series w/an ex-police trainer.

Film: Derren Brown: Sacrifice: (Transformational docu-drama (trailer of “Sacrifice”)

TED: A Black Man Undercover in the Alt Right as told by humorist, poet Theo E.J. Wilson 

Book: When They Call You a Terrorist by BLM co-founder Patrisse Khan-Cullors 

Vid: (starts at 8:30) A Conversation on Race and Privilege w/Angela Davis & Jane Elliott.

Film: Edith + Eddie eldest interracial couple;. Guardienship News Vid. and AP News articles

Vids: (Language) Jane Elliott’s early exercise w/students, her  Blue-Eye/Brown-Eye Exercise in the U.K. her  Blue Eye/Brown Eye Exercise on Oprah, and an interview by James Causey

Policing, Historical Context, Successes and Solutions. 

TED: Officer Mitchell; Policing in America Needs to Change Trust me, I’m a cop.  

Vid: Ex-Balt. Officer M. Wood talks police abuse/corruption (us/them) culture & simple solutions.  

Vid. PBS: Former Police Chief says  Police Culture is “Toxic”  Michel Martin interviews Stamper.

Film: “The 13th” From Slavery to Incarceration–filmmaker Ava DuVarnet on her film. 

Audio-NPR: Audio: NPR’s Throughline Report: The Origins of the American Police

Vid: Comedian/writer/actor Amber Ruffin shares a lifetime of traumatic run-ins w/police  

Vid: Local News hidden camera compilations: Asking for a complaint form in police stations.

The Daily Show Panel Discussion on what it means to defund or reallocate police funds

Vid/Book: The Innocence Project Introhow to contribute. The Innocence Files

Vid: The Sentencing Project (statistics)Sentencing Project Website.

Book: “The End of Policing” by Professor Alex Vitali; interview on Democracy Now 

Vid: Journalist goes undercover as a guard in a private prison. Democracy Now

60 Minutes: A lying undercover agent arrested 46 people, most of them Black, on drug charges.

BOOK: The New Jim Crow (Brown U. review): Mass incarceration in the age of colorblindness. by Michelle Alexander. “This book is a “call to action.” –B.T. Jealous, Pres./CEO of the NAACP. 

Vid: Mass incarceration, and; organized and fighting for criminal justice reform

Vid:  60 Minutes interviews (disturbing images) lawyers who’ve overturned wrongful arrests

Vid: Wrongful Conviction Series: Jimmy Dennis Was Sentenced to Death

Vid: Wrongly imprisoned experience, and  LIfe After Being Wrongfully Imprisoned

TED: Privileged Warden Kiran Bedi How I remade prison and the inspiring documentary

Vid: My Health and Success in Prison, by ex inmate Cross Marte, Prisoner’s Ambition, by speaker inmate Anthony Wyatt, and Motivation Fm My Life for You, by speaker  inmate Tamika Sheppard   

Vid., Film, Book, Prison Projects: Dhama Brothers film trailer. And Doing time, doing Vipassana

News: San Quentin News, and Prison Radio, Beyond Prisons, and Wrongful Conviction Podcast

TED: Prison Meditators’ successes in the face of challenges conveyed by filmmaker/author Jenny Phillips. Oprah: Update results and expansion of Meditation in prisons

Vid: Panel; Oprah w/the Exonerated Central Park Five, & cast of the film based on their story. 

Vid: Norway’s prison reform philosophy and Their design in North Dakoda. and Race and Numbers 

Vid: Distinction: Applicable to any Organization or Practice Approach-Do No Harm

History, Academia & Science:

Vid/Book: PBS; When U.S. Diversity Successfully Ruled, and the subsequent Coup & Coverup. 

Audio: Solutions for Today’s Economic Issues Sadie Alexander; 1st Black Woman Economist.

Vid: Geaneologist Antoinette Harrell, Slavery Detective of the South, probes current “slavery”. 

Vid Lecture Series: ACLU The History of Racism w/Jeffery Robinson

Film: As told by the (then teen) activists; 1963 The Year That Changed Everything

Vid: The Slave Wrecks Diving Project (w/Nat’l Geo) covers divers who investigate & honor. 

Vid: How southern socialites Rewrote & Mistaught Civil War HIstory to generations.

Snopes fack-check:  Did Lincoln have white supremacist, or abolitionist beliefs/quotes

James Baldwin’s famous Pin Drop Speech at Cambridge 

TED: What Startup Communities can learn from Black Wall Street by Award-winning Anthony Frasieer, co-founder of the Phat Startup; producing resources for entrepreneurs. 

Vid: History; Black Wall Street, and the Elaine Massacre 

Vids/Article: The day Phillidelphia bombed itself (in 1985) and The film, and Wikipedia.

Vid: Brown University (talk starts at 6:45) How Structural Racism Works Professor Tricia Rose

TED: Professor David Ikard of Vanderbilt: The Danger of Whitewashing American History

Book: Economics; The User’s Guide; by Dr. Ha-Joon Chang  Relatable & sometimes humorous. 

Blog: (Crosstalk)  100 Inspiring Black scientists in America by Antentor O. Hinton, Jr. 

Vid: Emory U. Prof. Carol Anderson; White Rage: The unspoken Truth of our Nation’s divide. 

Vid: Socrates, Intellect, and Uncomfortable Wisdom by Harvard U. Prof. Dr. Cornel West.

Book: Personal accounts-published in 1861 Incidents in the Life of a Slave Girl by Harriett Jacobs–Author, organizer, and cofounder of schools for fugitive and freed enslaved people. 

Vid: York’s History of Slavery: 

Film: PBS The Marian Stokes Project on media-historian, producer, activist Marian Stokes. 

Vid: TED talks: Historian Dr. Curtis Austin Ohio State University. Black Panthers White Lies 

Book:  People’s History of the United States by HIstorian Howard Zinn 

Vid: PBS; Slavery is Embedded in Everything, Smithsonian’s Historian Sec. Lonnie Bunch. 

Book: The Marrow of Tradition by Charles W. Chesnutt 

Book: Their Eyes Were Watching God; Anthropologist, satirist,  filmmaker Zora Neale Hurston

Vid: Carry On; The Life & Legacy of Maggie Leena Walker First Black Woman Banker (b. 1864)

Healthy Options: (for all?) 

Vid: Health Inequities and Pandemics; Research on Implicit and subconscious provider bias. 

Audio: Short Wave w/host Maddie Sophia & reporter Emily Kwong The Importance of Black Drs.

Article: Pro Publica: by Jon Sidhu; Exploring AMA’s history of closing down Black med schools 

TED: Dr. Richard Garcia Race Health Disparities in Medicine

Vid: Alzheimers as a Civil Rights/Finance Issue Dan Gasby and B. Smith

Vid: World /historical midwife success & doctors discrimination against midwives 

Audio Series: Black Mental Health Alliance.

Vid: Young entrepreneurship & philanthropy: Natural Health w/The Honey Pot Founders

Article: Wash. Post  Malpractice with Black Americans in mental health. 

TED: Psychiatrist Dr. Shaili Jain: The Future of PTSD Treatment 

TED: MDMA, Psychotherapy, and the Future of PTSD Treatment | MAPSCommunications Director Brad Burge. Article: Journal of Contemporary Psychotherapy

Article: Scientific American–MDMA and it’s possible release for PTSD patients 

Book & Vid: Series: Depression in Our World Psychologist/author Dr. Jeff Gardere and Terrie Williams, author of “Black Pain” 

TED: Dr. Shaun J. Fletcher–Reimagining Mental Health Wisdom self-care exploration.  

Film: Alive Inside Music and Healing, talk-review of film, and implementation commentary


Popular News Programs:

CNN’s Anderson Cooper moved to tears by Professor Cornel West

MSNBC: Why Black People Don’t Need To Answer to white people who question them.

Channel 4: Black bank manager to sue Metropolitan Police after 26-month nightmare 

Vid: LL Cool J Addresses racism in America: You Do Not Have to be Afraid of Me.    

VOX: Neighbors Walking While Black 


Desserts: (sweet, fun, inspiring)
(easy to digest–best accompanied with main dishes)

Vid: Iconoclast series Inspiring dialogue; Dave Chappelle + Maya Angelou 

Schoolyard Rap Encore: Official Music Video: Black Made That! 

Series: Black Excellist: 21 Black Owned Banks (#BANKBLACK) 

Music: Black People Singing Compilation by Black and Iconic 

TED: Humorous Insight on Privilege:  I’ve been a Man & a Woman Paula Stone Williams. 

Music Vid: Mykal Kilgore’s Reclaiminmg My Time (musical ode to Rep. Maxine Waters

Article: Archie Williams influences Simon Cowell to become an Innocence Project Ambassador 

Music Vid: rare rendition of Lift Every Voice and Sing by Berklee College of Music Students 

Vid: The 5 Most African-American Friendly Countries;

Vid: Comedic actor, producer Drew Dorsey (DD): If Common Horror Movies Starred Black People 

Top Ten Reasons Why We Retired In Portugal 

Why this couple believes FIRE will create more black millionaires 

Blog: Supporting Black Artists & Businesses during COVID & beyond. 

Speech/Book: Motivational Speech at by author, speaker,  Dr.Rick Rigsby 


Some Websites
The ACLUThe BEAM Collective, Black Lives Matter Global Network, BLT: Black Lunch Table, Black Mental Health Alliance, GLADThe Movement for Black Lives (M4BL), The Sentencing Project, Innocence Project, NAMI Links, The NAACP


If you would like to add to this list, please email us here. Thank you for your contribution.  

Category: Diversity


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