100 books like How to Be an Antiracist

By Ibram X. Kendi,

Here are 100 books that How to Be an Antiracist fans have personally recommended if you like How to Be an Antiracist. Shepherd is a community of 10,000+ authors and super readers sharing their favorite books with the world.

Shepherd is reader supported. When you buy books, we may earn an affiliate commission.

Book cover of Think Again: The Power of Knowing What You Don't Know

Sharon M. Darmody Author Of Work Your Magic: Create a Better Business Community That Works for Everyone

From my list on how to make work, work again (to make sure that you and your workplace thrive).

Who am I?

I think we can all agree we spend a lot of time at work. If we can help people to thrive at work, it makes such a big difference in their lives and it has such a ripple effect for the people around them. When we do well at work we do well at home. I have been working with people and organizations for over 25 years and over that time I have an instinct for the “temperature” of an organization. Work Your Magic helps you to diagnose what might be going wrong and then sets you up with a roadmap to make the changes that will make work, work again for you and your workplace.

Sharon's book list on how to make work, work again (to make sure that you and your workplace thrive)

Sharon M. Darmody Why did Sharon love this book?

If work is going to work again, we need to be curious. The world is moving fast and the issues we are facing are arguably more complex than ever before, so we must avoid at all costs the rigid my way or the highway thinking.

Sometimes it feels good when we lock a solution in quickly because we feel we have solved the problem perhaps ticked the box. I really encourage people to stay in the messy middle and to “think again” to make sure it is not the quick solution, but they stick with the problem solving so they get the best solution.

By Adam Grant,

Why should I read it?

9 authors picked Think Again as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

#1 New York Times Bestseller

"THIS. This is the right book for right now. Yes, learning requires focus. But, unlearning and relearning requires much more-it requires choosing courage over comfort. In Think Again, Adam Grant weaves together research and storytelling to help us build the intellectual and emotional muscle we need to stay curious enough about the world to actually change it. I've never felt so hopeful about what I don't know."
-Brene Brown, Ph.D., #1 New York Times bestselling author of Dare to Lead

The bestselling author of Give and Take and Originals examines the critical art of rethinking:…


Book cover of Just Mercy: A Story of Justice and Redemption

Akwasi Owusu-Bempah and Tahira Rehmatullah Author Of Waiting to Inhale: Cannabis Legalization and the Fight for Racial Justice

From my list on social justice and the need for transformative change.

Who are we?

As a duo, we’re a mix of things. For Akwasi, I’m a changemaker, professor, and academic. My work examines the intersections of race, crime, and criminal justice, and my current research spans criminal justice institutions and various aspects of drug legalization in Canada and beyond. For Tahira, my career has been less than linear, with experiences spanning the investment, cannabis, and consumer sectors as an investor and entrepreneur. I realized my forte lies in sitting in the middle, streamlining complexity, and remaining dedicated to the people who need help most. Together, we’re committed to shaping the future of business and policy by integrating diverse perspectives and lived experiences.

Akwasi and Tahira's book list on social justice and the need for transformative change

Akwasi Owusu-Bempah and Tahira Rehmatullah Why did Akwasi and Tahira love this book?

It’s hard to find nonfiction books that feel a lot like fiction, and we sprinted through this book for that reason.

The author weaves personal narrative and public policy into a web that depicts the very tragic impact of unjust laws and racism.

We read the book after seeing the movie (which is also incredible), and we can say that we were just as impacted and enamored as we were during the film. Maybe even more! 

By Bryan Stevenson,

Why should I read it?

8 authors picked Just Mercy as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

NOW A MAJOR MOTION PICTURE, STARRING MICHAEL B. JORDAN, JAMIE FOXX, AND BRIE LARSON.

A NEW YORK TIMES, WASHINGTON POST, BOSTON GLOBE, ESQUIRE, AND TIME BOOK OF THE YEAR.

A #1 New York Times bestseller, this is a powerful, true story about the potential for mercy to redeem us, and a clarion call to fix America's broken justice system, as seen in the HBO documentary True Justice.

The US has the highest rate of incarceration in the world. One in every 15 people born there today is expected to go to prison. For black men this figure rises to one…


Book cover of The Essentials of Theory U: Core Principles and Applications

Jason J. Jay Author Of Breaking Through Gridlock: The Power of Conversation in a Polarized World

From my list on changing the world, starting with yourself.

Who am I?

I teach sustainability at the MIT Sloan School of Management and get to know hundreds of passionate executives and young professionals every year. They are out to change organizations, disrupt markets, build social movements, and advance public policy to make the world a better place. As I coach and connect these leaders throughout their careers, I get a front row seat to their personal development. I get to observe - what makes for an effective agent of change or social entrepreneur? How can we enact social and environmental values in organizations that seem to ignore those concerns? How do we change ourselves to be more effective in changing the world?

Jason's book list on changing the world, starting with yourself

Jason J. Jay Why did Jason love this book?

I love Otto Scharmer’s roadmap for changing ourselves and changing the world. He confronts the ecological, social, and spiritual divides in our current moment of crisis in human civilization. He identifies the ego-centric quality of attention and consciousness that have produced those crises. And he offers an over-arching process (“Theory U”) and a set of practices for transforming self, system, and society that I have found incredibly useful. 

By Otto Scharmer,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked The Essentials of Theory U as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

A powerful pocket guide for practitioners that distills all of the research and materials found in Otto Scharmer's seminal texts Theory U and Leading from the Emerging Future.

Creating a Better Future

This book offers a concise, accessible guide to the key concepts and applications in Otto Scharmer's classic Theory U. Scharmer argues that our capacity to pay attention coshapes the world. What prevents us from attending to situations more effectively is that we aren't fully aware of that interior condition from which our attention and actions originate. Scharmer calls this lack of awareness our blind spot. He illuminates the…


Book cover of The Future We Choose: The Stubborn Optimist's Guide to the Climate Crisis

Tina Muir Author Of Becoming a Sustainable Runner: A Guide to Running for Life, Community, and Planet

From my list on helping you process emotions around climate.

Who am I?

FernGully was one of my favorite movies as a kid, and it made me really think about the natural world and how humans interact with it. Now, aged 35 with kids of my own (who also love FernGully), I consider myself a climate activist for the work I do in helping everyday people to believe they can be a part of the solution to climate change. As an author, podcast host, and community builder, I've connected with other humans with fascinating passions, perspectives, and values. I want to show my audience that we can all view the world differently, but there is one important thing we need to all believe, that we matter.

Tina's book list on helping you process emotions around climate

Tina Muir Why did Tina love this book?

We have a lot of climate anxiety.

Most of the time I feel optimistic and believe in humanity, believe that we will come together to create a solution, but some days, it can be hard to move past the fear and uncertainty. Climate books can make this worse with their ultimatum-type messaging; of course, we feel doomed.

The Future We Choose is the ideal book to read when you are struggling to see a way forward. Christiana and Tom do a wonderful job of explaining what life could look like in 50 years if we make the right choices now. Rather than the book only being about what is at stake, they paint a clear picture of how much more vibrant, stunning, fulfilling, and joyful our home can be.

This book gave me hope and I lean on the imagery from it in moments I am struggling.

By Christiana Figueres, Tom Rivett-Carnac,

Why should I read it?

6 authors picked The Future We Choose as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

THE SUNDAY TIMES BESTSELLER

'Everyone should read this book' MATT HAIG
'One of the most inspiring books I have ever read' YUVAL NOAH HARARI
'Inspirational, compassionate and clear. The time to read this is NOW' MARK RUFFALO
'Figueres and Rivett-Carnac dare to tell us how our response can create a better, fairer world' NAOMI KLEIN

*****

Discover why there's hope for the planet and how we can each make a difference in the climate crisis, starting today.

Humanity is not doomed, and we can and will survive. The future is ours to create: it will be shaped by who we…


Book cover of Bury the Chains: Prophets and Rebels in the Fight to Free an Empire's Slaves

Jason J. Jay Author Of Breaking Through Gridlock: The Power of Conversation in a Polarized World

From my list on changing the world, starting with yourself.

Who am I?

I teach sustainability at the MIT Sloan School of Management and get to know hundreds of passionate executives and young professionals every year. They are out to change organizations, disrupt markets, build social movements, and advance public policy to make the world a better place. As I coach and connect these leaders throughout their careers, I get a front row seat to their personal development. I get to observe - what makes for an effective agent of change or social entrepreneur? How can we enact social and environmental values in organizations that seem to ignore those concerns? How do we change ourselves to be more effective in changing the world?

Jason's book list on changing the world, starting with yourself

Jason J. Jay Why did Jason love this book?

This is a riveting account of the abolition of slavery in the British Empire and biography of abolitionist Thomas Clarkson. Clarkson committed himself to ending the slave trade in 1785 and pursued this objective until his final speeches in the 1840s. The book is an incredible lesson in persistence and perseverance, as Hochschild follows the advancement and setbacks of a century-long social movement. While racial domination and modern slavery are still very real, abolition represented the awakening of global civil society, and a significant transformation toward a socially just global economy. For anyone feeling a lack of hope about change, there is real inspiration here. 

By Adam Hochschild,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked Bury the Chains as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

The author of King Leopold's Ghost offers a stirring account of the first great human rights crusade, which originated in England in the 1780s and resulted in the freeing of hundreds of thousands of slaves around the world.


Book cover of General Harriet Tubman

Artika Tyner Author Of The Untold Story of John P. Parker: Underground Railroad Conductor

From my list on champions for racial justice.

Who am I?

I’m a civil rights attorney, author, and lifelong educator. My work has focused on addressing racial disparities in education and criminal justice. I worked on the Campaign for Prison Phone Justice and created restorative justice programs in schools. As a leadership scholar, I read books on remarkable sheroes and heroes. This provides me with keen insights into the leadership characteristics of changemakers while developing the tools to better understand how to build and sustain social change.

Artika's book list on champions for racial justice

Artika Tyner Why did Artika love this book?

General Harriet Tubman provides an in-depth look at Tubman’s leadership legacy.

You discover her passion for justice and commitment to ensuring freedom for all. Most publications on Tubman focus on her role in the Underground Railroad. Her courage and tenacity helped many to break free from the bondage of slavery. This is only one dimension of her life. She was also a spy for the Union Army.

In addition, she helped to organize a community in Canada for hundreds who had escaped from slavery and reclaimed their liberty.

By Earl Conrad,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked General Harriet Tubman as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

Written by Earl Conrad and originally published by Carter G. Woodson and the The Associated Publishers in 1943 and 1990, General Harriet Tubman is a well-researched and documented biography.  It draws on the accounts of Tubman's living relatives and others with expert knowledge of the period in which she lived.  Perhaps, for this reason, in his Acknowledgements for the first edition, Conrad likened the book to Tubman herself:  "Scores of people have contributed to the information, the understanding, and diverse other assistance that has been necessary in effecting this complete life of Harriet Tubman.  I could not possibly call it…


Book cover of Moses: When Harriet Tubman Led Her People to Freedom

Artika Tyner Author Of The Untold Story of John P. Parker: Underground Railroad Conductor

From my list on champions for racial justice.

Who am I?

I’m a civil rights attorney, author, and lifelong educator. My work has focused on addressing racial disparities in education and criminal justice. I worked on the Campaign for Prison Phone Justice and created restorative justice programs in schools. As a leadership scholar, I read books on remarkable sheroes and heroes. This provides me with keen insights into the leadership characteristics of changemakers while developing the tools to better understand how to build and sustain social change.

Artika's book list on champions for racial justice

Artika Tyner Why did Artika love this book?

Moses was her name because she was determined to see her people set free.

Drawing upon the biblical Moses, the book outlines the parallels between the lives of Moses (who led his people to the Promised Land) and Harriet Tubman (who was guided to freedom by the North Star). This book provides children with the inspiration to serve as leaders. They recognize that they too can combine faith and freedom to make a difference in the world.

By Carol Boston Weatherford, Kadir Nelson (illustrator),

Why should I read it?

1 author picked Moses as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

A Caldecott Honor Book
A Coretta Scott King Award Winner

From a highly acclaimed author and bestselling artist comes a resounding, reverent tribute to Harriet Tubman, the woman who earned the name Moses for her heroic role in the Underground Railroad.
 
I set the North Star in the heavens and I mean for you to be free...

Born into slavery, Harriet Tubman hears these words from God one summer night and decides to leave her husband and family behind and escape. Taking with her only her faith, she must creep through woods with hounds at her feet, sleep for days…


Book cover of Aya: An Anthology of Racial Justice, Healing and the Black Experience

Artika Tyner Author Of The Untold Story of John P. Parker: Underground Railroad Conductor

From my list on champions for racial justice.

Who am I?

I’m a civil rights attorney, author, and lifelong educator. My work has focused on addressing racial disparities in education and criminal justice. I worked on the Campaign for Prison Phone Justice and created restorative justice programs in schools. As a leadership scholar, I read books on remarkable sheroes and heroes. This provides me with keen insights into the leadership characteristics of changemakers while developing the tools to better understand how to build and sustain social change.

Artika's book list on champions for racial justice

Artika Tyner Why did Artika love this book?

This book is written by Minnesota youth after the murder of Mr. George Floyd.

As the nation faced the dual pandemic of the novel COVID-19 and racial reckoning, our youth needed a sacred space to pause, reflect, and heal. Through community writing workshops, youth developed the tools to write for justice. Their stories reflect their vision for building a more just and inclusive society.

By Artika Tyner,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked Aya as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

Aya is an anthology produced by Black Minnesota voices. Youth and community activists shared their reflections on justice and healing. This 2022 publication is its inaugural edition.

Aya Anthology was created to ignite change in the furtherance of racial justice. It serves as an invitation to lead and serve in the community.


Book cover of Not My Idea: A Book about Whiteness

Winter Miller Author Of Not a Cat: A Memoir

From my list on memoirs by very sexy writers.

Who am I?

Raised by activist feminist parents and schooled by Quakers, I am surprisingly amusing. Eartha Kitt once held my left hand for five minutes. I work primarily as a playwright; Not a Cat is my first children’s book! Now when I show up at a little kid’s birthday instead of bringing a play I wrote, I can give the tot age-appropriate reading material. For me, reading a memoir is this intimate exchange with a writer where they’ve shared everything, and I’ve revealed nothing. What’s better than a good story beautifully curated? Okay, a cookie, but that’s it. I hope my book reaches all the kids out there who are told: be less this and more that

Winter's book list on memoirs by very sexy writers

Winter Miller Why did Winter love this book?

This is sort of a cheat of the assignment, because it’s not Anastasia Higginbotham’s actual lived experience, but it is not one unfamiliar to her, about growing up in a country in which white parents cover up racism even unintentionally. I’ve known Anastasia for 30 years and no less than six children’s books she’s published. Her book series, Ordinary Terrible Things, published by dottir press is among my favorites because the illustrations are collaged and stunning and she creates indelible characters. Her other kid’s books deal with divorce (Divorce is Stupid), sex (Talk to Me about Sex, Grandma), incest (You Ruined It), so you can see, she’s doesn’t pull punches. Book by book, Anastasia is building a more just and beautiful world. Like the others, on this list, she’s also hot. 

By Anastasia Higginbotham,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked Not My Idea as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

An honest explanation about how power and privilege factor into the lives of white children, at the expense of other groups, and how they can help seek justice. -THE NEW YORK TIMES

ONE OF HUFFPOST'S RECOMMENDED "ANTI-RACIST BOOKS FOR KIDS AND TEENS"

**A WHITE RAVEN 2019 SELECTION**

NAMED ONE OF SCHOOL LIBRARY JOURNAL'S BEST BOOKS OF 2018

Not My Idea: A Book About Whiteness is a picture book about racism and racial justice, inviting white children and parents to become curious about racism, accept that it's real, and cultivate justice.

This book does a phenomenal job of explaining how power…


Book cover of Stamped: Racism, Antiracism, and You: A Remix of the National Book Award-winning Stamped from the Beginning

Wade Hudson Author Of Defiant: Growing Up in the Jim Crow South

From my list on for young readers on growing up Black in the US.

Who am I?

As a youngster growing up in the segregated South, I didn’t have access to books about Black history, culture, and experiences. Although I attended all-Black schools, the curriculum and the books in our libraries were mostly selected by an all-White school board. So, I didn’t know that much about the history of my own people. I would not begin to learn that until I attended college. When I married and had children of my own, my wife and I still had problems finding a variety of books for children and young readers for our own children to read. So, we started our own publishing company to address the need for these books.

Wade's book list on for young readers on growing up Black in the US

Wade Hudson Why did Wade love this book?

The description of this book lays it all out for the readers. It says, “This is NOT a history book.

This is a book about the here and now. A book to help us better understand why we are where we are. A book about race. What a journey it takes the readers on, exploring the construct of race in this country.

By Jason Reynolds, Ibram X. Kendi,

Why should I read it?

2 authors picked Stamped as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

In this important and compelling young readers adaptation of his National Book Award-winning title, Dr. Ibram X. Kendi, writing with award-winning author Jason Reynolds, chronicles the story of anti-black, racist ideas over the course of American history.

Racist ideas in our country did not arise from ignorance or hatred. Instead, they were developed by some of the most brilliant minds in history to justify and rationalise the nation's deeply entrenched discriminatory policies. But while racist ideas have always been easy to fabricate and distribute, they can also be discredited. In shedding light on the history of racist ideas in America,…


5 book lists we think you will like!

Interested in anti-racism, race relations, and racism?

10,000+ authors have recommended their favorite books and what they love about them. Browse their picks for the best books about anti-racism, race relations, and racism.

Anti-Racism Explore 20 books about anti-racism
Race Relations Explore 234 books about race relations
Racism Explore 175 books about racism