100 books like Race After Technology

By Ruha Benjamin,

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

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Book cover of W. E. B. Du Bois's Data Portraits: Visualizing Black America

Colin Koopman Author Of How We Became Our Data: A Genealogy of the Informational Person

From my list on data ethics (and data politics).

Who am I?

Colin Koopman researches and teaches about technology ethics at the University of Oregon, where he is a Professor of Philosophy and Director of the interdisciplinary certificate program in New Media & Culture.  His research pursuits have spanned from the history of efforts in the early twentieth century to standardize birth certificates to our understanding of ourselves as effects of the code inscribed into our genes.  Koopman is currently at work on a book that will develop our understanding of what it takes to achieve equality and fairness in data systems, tentatively titled Data Equals.

Colin's book list on data ethics (and data politics)

Colin Koopman Why did Colin love this book?

W.E.B. Du Bois is widely acknowledged as the leading activist for racial equality of his generation. But until very recently little had been known of his deep commitment to the pursuit of equality within and through data technology. As Du Bois was preparing notes for his famous 1903 book The Souls of Black Folk, he was also preparing an exposition of what we would today call “infographics” (or what the editors of this volume aptly call “data portraits”) for exhibition at the 1900 Paris Exposition world’s fair. This volume handsomely reproduces for the first time a full-color complete set of Du Bois’s charts, graphs, maps, and ingenious spirals. A beautiful book to live with, it also subtly transforms one’s understanding of the history of racial progress and inequality in America.

By The W E B Du Bois Center at the Universi,

Why should I read it?

3 authors picked W. E. B. Du Bois's Data Portraits as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

"As visually arresting as it is informative."-The Boston Globe

"Du Bois's bold colors and geometric shapes were decades ahead of modernist graphic design in America."-Fast Company's Co.Design

W.E.B. Du Bois's Data Portraits is the first complete publication of W.E.B. Du Bois's groundbreaking charts, graphs, and maps presented at the 1900 Paris Exposition.

Famed sociologist, writer, and Black rights activist W.E.B. Du Bois fundamentally changed the representation of Black Americans with his exhibition of data visualizations at the 1900 Paris Exposition. Beautiful in design and powerful in content, these data portraits make visible a wide spectrum of African American culture, from…


Book cover of Exposed: Desire and Disobedience in the Digital Age

Colin Koopman Author Of How We Became Our Data: A Genealogy of the Informational Person

From my list on data ethics (and data politics).

Who am I?

Colin Koopman researches and teaches about technology ethics at the University of Oregon, where he is a Professor of Philosophy and Director of the interdisciplinary certificate program in New Media & Culture.  His research pursuits have spanned from the history of efforts in the early twentieth century to standardize birth certificates to our understanding of ourselves as effects of the code inscribed into our genes.  Koopman is currently at work on a book that will develop our understanding of what it takes to achieve equality and fairness in data systems, tentatively titled Data Equals.

Colin's book list on data ethics (and data politics)

Colin Koopman Why did Colin love this book?

Harcourt’s Exposed takes the reader inside the contemporary social, political, and legal configurations that haunt our online lives by paradoxically pulling on the strings of our desires and wants. Harcourt exposes how the insidious technologies of mega-cap high-tech coax out of us a desire to expose ourselves, that too-familiar desire to share so much (and so often too much) online. Harcourt is one of the leading voices in contemporary critical theory and at the same time a practicing death-penalty lawyer. He knows both the inside of our political-legal systems and can gain a broad view of the wider social dynamics of social media. 

By Bernard E. Harcourt,

Why should I read it?

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

What is this book about?

Social media compile data on users, retailers mine information on consumers, Internet giants create dossiers of who we know and what we do, and intelligence agencies collect all this plus billions of communications daily. Exploiting our boundless desire to access everything all the time, digital technology is breaking down whatever boundaries still exist between the state, the market, and the private realm. Exposed offers a powerful critique of our new virtual transparence, revealing just how unfree we are becoming and how little we seem to care.

Bernard Harcourt guides us through our new digital landscape, one that makes it so…


Book cover of Files: Law and Media Technology

Colin Koopman Author Of How We Became Our Data: A Genealogy of the Informational Person

From my list on data ethics (and data politics).

Who am I?

Colin Koopman researches and teaches about technology ethics at the University of Oregon, where he is a Professor of Philosophy and Director of the interdisciplinary certificate program in New Media & Culture.  His research pursuits have spanned from the history of efforts in the early twentieth century to standardize birth certificates to our understanding of ourselves as effects of the code inscribed into our genes.  Koopman is currently at work on a book that will develop our understanding of what it takes to achieve equality and fairness in data systems, tentatively titled Data Equals.

Colin's book list on data ethics (and data politics)

Colin Koopman Why did Colin love this book?

This book dazzles me every time I read it. It will change the way you think about files and how such humble little documents can help rule our lives. Vismann’s Files is not the easiest going, but it is filled with enough history and detail that one can just join for the ride and follow along. The late Cornelia Vismann died too young but she still managed to leave us with this truly transformative account of the relation between law and the data systems upon which all law always relies. Through a careful history that stretches from parchment scrolls to mid-twentieth-century secret intelligence files to the desktop computer, Vismann excavates the way in which the ethics, politics, and legality of social systems are highly dependent upon data designs.

By Cornelia Vismann, Geoffrey Winthrop-Young (translator),

Why should I read it?

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

What is this book about?

Quod non est in actis, non est in mundo. (What is not on file is not in the world.) Once files are reduced to the status of stylized icons on computer screens, the reign of paper files appears to be over. With the epoch of files coming to an end, we are free to examine its fundamental influence on Western institutions. From a media-theoretical point of view, subject, state, and law reveal themselves to be effects of specific record-keeping and filing practices. Files are not simply administrative tools; they mediate and process legal systems. The genealogy of the law described…


Book cover of From Hieroglyphics to Isotype: A Visual Autobiography

Colin Koopman Author Of How We Became Our Data: A Genealogy of the Informational Person

From my list on data ethics (and data politics).

Who am I?

Colin Koopman researches and teaches about technology ethics at the University of Oregon, where he is a Professor of Philosophy and Director of the interdisciplinary certificate program in New Media & Culture.  His research pursuits have spanned from the history of efforts in the early twentieth century to standardize birth certificates to our understanding of ourselves as effects of the code inscribed into our genes.  Koopman is currently at work on a book that will develop our understanding of what it takes to achieve equality and fairness in data systems, tentatively titled Data Equals.

Colin's book list on data ethics (and data politics)

Colin Koopman Why did Colin love this book?

This book offers a beautiful data portrait of one of the most energetic polyglots of the first half of the twentieth century. Otto Neurath is famous among philosophers for his monumental effort to unify the sciences in an encyclopedic presentation. His metaphor of science as a massive flotilla out at sea repairing itself as it goes beautifully encapsulates the self-correcting enterprise of the sciences. This book offers another angle into Neurath’s life and work. Isotype was conceived by Neurath and collaborators as a universal picture language that can transcend borders, tongues, and divisions. Another grand dream of early-twentieth-century unification, with all its inevitable failings, is beautifully reproduced in this book.

By Otto Neurath,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked From Hieroglyphics to Isotype as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

From 1943 until his death in December 1945, Austrian sociologist Otto Neurath worked tirelessly on numerous versionsof an innovative visual autobiography entitled From Hieroglyphics to Isotype. Now, sixty-five years later, comes the first publication of his full text, carefully edited from the original manuscripts. This edition highlights the important role visual material played in Neurath's life—from his earliest years to his professional work on the Isotype picture language. This engaging and informal account gives a rich picture of Central-European culture aroundthe turn of the twentieth century, seen through the eyes of Neurath's insatiable intelligence, as well as a detailed exposition…


Book cover of Seen and Unseen: Technology, Social Media, and the Fight for Racial Justice

Ernest Owens Author Of The Case for Cancel Culture: How This Democratic Tool Works to Liberate Us All

From my list on modern-day Black social consciousness.

Who am I?

I’m a Philadelphia-based journalist and new author. I’m the Editor at Large for Philadelphia Magazine and President of the Philadelphia Association of Black Journalists. As an openly Black gay journalist, I’ve headlined for speaking frankly about intersectional issues in society regarding race, LGBTQIA, and pop culture. Such experiences have awakened my consciousness as an underrepresented voice in the media and have pushed me to explore societal topics. My new book The Case for Cancel Culture, published by St. Martin's Press, is my way of staking my claim in the global conversation on this buzzworthy topic. 

Ernest's book list on modern-day Black social consciousness

Ernest Owens Why did Ernest love this book?

What I admire the most about this book is how it clearly explains the power of social media and social justice without the kind of paternalistic finger-wagging of bad actors.

Hill and Brewster focus on the impact, intention, and impressions of some of the most important activist movements of our time and how alike and different they are from the past.

This book strikes an incredible balance of admiring the days before Twitter, while respecting the current progress made now that we have such digital platforms at our fingertips.

By Marc Lamont Hill, Todd Brewster,

Why should I read it?

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

What is this book about?

A riveting exploration of how the power of visual media over the last few years has shifted the narrative on race and reignited the push towards justice by the author of the "worthy and necessary" (The New York Times) Nobody Marc Lamont Hill and the bestselling author and acclaimed journalist Todd Brewster.

With his signature "clear and courageous" (Cornel West) voice Marc Lamont Hill and New York Times bestselling author Todd Brewster weave four recent pivotal moments in America's racial divide into their disturbing historical context-starting with the killing of George Floyd-Seen and Unseen reveals the connections between our current…


Book cover of My Grandmother's Hands: Racialized Trauma and the Pathway to Mending Our Hearts and Bodies

Laura E. Anderson Author Of When Religion Hurts You: Healing from Religious Trauma and the Impact of High-Control Religion

From my list on why religious trauma is trauma.

Who am I?

My professional work has always been inspired by the personal journey I've gone on–which means that my interest in religious trauma stems from my own healing as well as client work and research. Previous research and therapeutic interventions have suggested atheism as a cure for religious trauma which is often unhelpful and can create just as much rigidity as someone experienced in a high control religion. I approach religious trauma as trauma–which means that resolving religious trauma can occur in the same ways that we use to resolve other trauma. Understanding religious trauma this way opens the door for a decrease in shame, more compassion towards self, and ultimately living a whole life.

Laura's book list on why religious trauma is trauma

Laura E. Anderson Why did Laura love this book?

Resmaa’s book is one of the more influential books for me.

Though his focus is on racialized and generational trauma, he begins by helping the reader understand where biases, fears, and oppression become lodged in the nervous system–generations before us–and how this shapes the way we interact with anyone who is different than us.

Mixed in with excellent content are effective practices for the reader to find a sense of grounding and safety in their current surroundings which is key in being able to resolve the trauma that is living in our bodies. 

By Resmaa Menakem,

Why should I read it?

2 authors picked My Grandmother's Hands as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

The body is where our instincts reside and where we fight, flee or freeze and it endures the trauma inflicted by the ills that plague society. In this ground-breaking work, therapist, Menakem, examines the damage caused by racism in America from the perspective of body-centred psychology. He argues this destruction will continue until Americans learn to heal the generational anguish of white supremacy, which is deeply embedded in all American bodies. This collective agony doesn't just affect African Americans. White Americans suffer their own secondary trauma as well. So do blue Americans - the police.

MY GRANDMOTHER'S HANDS is a…


Book cover of The Age of Surveillance Capitalism: The Fight for a Human Future at the New Frontier of Power

Keith L. Downing Author Of Gradient Expectations: Structure, Origins, and Synthesis of Predictive Neural Networks

From my list on to keep an AI researcher awake at night.

Who am I?

I've been working in the field of AI for 40 years, first in graduate school and then as a professor. For the most part, I have had my head in the sand, focusing on the minutiae that occasionally lead to publications, the coins of the academic realm. When deep learning started exhibiting human-level pattern recognition abilities, the number of AI books for the general public began to swell.  Unfortunately, the science-fiction scenarios were a bit much. Since understanding, recognizing, and admitting problems are vital steps toward a solution, I find these books to be the most important warnings of the impending tech-dominated future.

Keith's book list on to keep an AI researcher awake at night

Keith L. Downing Why did Keith love this book?

This book is very long, and somewhat redundant at times. But it’s extremely interesting…and chilling. 

Zuboff cites a wide variety of examples of how companies, Google foremost among them, gather information about us (legally or illegally) and then use it not only to predict our behavior, but to control it as well. That’s the really scary part.

The writing can be a bit too poetic at times, but Zuboff displays an incredible breadth and depth of knowledge on this subject. I’m a slow reader, so this one took me a while to get through, but it was time well spent.

By Shoshana Zuboff,

Why should I read it?

9 authors picked The Age of Surveillance Capitalism as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

THE TOP 10 SUNDAY TIMES BESTSELLER

'Everyone needs to read this book as an act of digital self-defense.' -- Naomi Klein, Author of No Logo, the Shock Doctrine, This Changes Everything and No is Not Enough

The challenges to humanity posed by the digital future, the first detailed examination of the unprecedented form of power called "surveillance capitalism," and the quest by powerful corporations to predict and control us.

The heady optimism of the Internet's early days is gone. Technologies that were meant to liberate us have deepened inequality and stoked divisions. Tech companies gather our information online and sell…


Book cover of Advanced Introduction to Platform Economics

James Meese Author Of Digital Platforms and the Press

From my list on news and the impact of technology.

Who am I?

I’ve been fascinated by the news media and technology for as long as I can remember. I successfully campaigned for a VCR as a five-year-old, and watched multiple news programs with my grandfather growing up. Alongside these interests, I managed to read as many books as I possibly could. I’ve managed to somehow parlay that into a job as a researcher, where I study the news media sector and technological transformation. I read everything on this list while I was writing my latest book, and hope you enjoy them as much as I did! 

James' book list on news and the impact of technology

James Meese Why did James love this book?

Many of the concerns around news and technology, center around how the distribution of news through social media impacts the news business.

However, we can only understand how these two sectors interact by understanding platform economics. Thankfully, Robin Mansell and W. Edward Steinmueller have written a simple and concise introduction to a complicated topic. A great way to quickly deepen your understanding of an important issue. 

By Robin Mansell, W. E. Steinmueller,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked Advanced Introduction to Platform Economics as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

Elgar Advanced Introductions are stimulating and thoughtful introductions to major fields in the social sciences and law, expertly written by the world's leading scholars. Designed to be accessible yet rigorous, they offer concise and lucid surveys of the substantive and policy issues associated with discrete subject areas.

This cutting edge book introduces the origins and consequences of digital platforms, examining how artificial intelligence-enabled digital platforms collect and process data from and about users by providing social media and e-commerce services. Robin Mansell and W. Edward Steinmueller compare and contrast neoclassical, institutional and critical political economy approaches. They show how uneven…


Book cover of Machine, Platform, Crowd: Harnessing Our Digital Future

Bryce G. Hoffman Author Of American Icon: Alan Mulally and the Fight to Save Ford Motor Company

From my list on thinking leaders.

Who am I?

I'm a bestselling business author, top-rated leadership speaker, and unconsultant who helps individuals and organizations think more critically, lead more effectively, and make better decisions. Prior to writing American Icon, I spent 20 years as a business reporter, covering the high-tech, biotech, and automotive industries for newspapers in California and Michigan. After that, I quit my job in order to help CEOs understand and implement the game-changing leadership I described in it. In 2017, I published my second book, Red Teaming: How Your Business Can Conquer the Competition by Challenging Everything and started my own company, Red Team Thinking, to train organizations in this revolutionary approach to decision-making because I believe that who thinks wins.

Bryce's book list on thinking leaders

Bryce G. Hoffman Why did Bryce love this book?

If you read one book on AI, make sure it is this one. Machine, Platform, Crowd cuts through the hype and science fiction that surrounds the artificial intelligence revolution to uncover the real opportunities created by this rapidly evolving technology. This book has shaped my own thinking about AI, which I now see as a force multiplier for human decision-makers, rather than as a replacement for them. It will help you better understand the challenges and opportunities this creates for you and your organization as well.

By Andrew McAfee, Erik Brynjolfsson,

Why should I read it?

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

What is this book about?

We live in strange times. A machine plays the strategy game Go better than any human; upstarts like Apple and Google destroy industry stalwarts such as Nokia; ideas from the crowd are repeatedly more innovative than those from corporate research laboratories.

Andrew McAfee and Erik Brynjolfsson know what it takes to master this digital-powered shift: we must rethink the integration of minds and machines, of products and platforms, and of the core and the crowd. The balance now favours the second element of the pair, with massive implications for how we run our companies and live our lives. McAfee and…


Book cover of Tangle's Game

Allen Stroud Author Of Resilient

From my list on fantasy and sci-fi with fresh takes and characters.

Who am I?

I’m a science fiction writer and academic who is interested in the big themes that challenge us as individuals and as a civilisation. My recent writing explores the representation of disability in science fiction. I want to create characters who readers can identify with and who provide different perspectives on the fictional future I am writing about. These characters are not trying to overcome any limitations, they live and accept who and what they are as we all do. The writers and stories I have chosen in this list do the same, showing us something about the human condition that we may not have thought about before.

Allen's book list on fantasy and sci-fi with fresh takes and characters

Allen Stroud Why did Allen love this book?

Tangle’s Game is a clever examination of the near future with an exploration of prejudice that is massively relevant in today’s society. The very best science fiction offers us a mirror to our own circumstances and situations. In the world of Tangle’s Game, we see the cultural behemoths of blockchain technology and social media as even more dominant forces than they are today.

Hotston uses this story to offer an informed and nuanced perspective on the world. Amanda’s descent from conformity highlights the ways in which we are measured and judged.

By Stewart Hotston,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked Tangle's Game as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

Nowhere to Run. Nowhere to Hide.

Yesterday, Amanda Back's life was flawless: the perfect social credit score, the perfect job, the perfect home. Today, Amanda is a target, an enemy of the system holding information dangerous enough to disrupt the world's all-consuming tech-a fugitive on the run. But in a world where an un-hackable blockchain links everyone and everything, there is nowhere to run...


5 book lists we think you will like!

Interested in information technology, African Americans, and race relations?

10,000+ authors have recommended their favorite books and what they love about them. Browse their picks for the best books about information technology, African Americans, and race relations.

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