Self-Work

Doing antiracist work in public spaces like classrooms also asks us to look inward, engaging in self-work or what Yolanda Sealey-Ruiz calls an "archaeology of the self." Sealey-Ruiz defines the archaeology of the self as "the excavation and exploration of beliefs, biases, and ideas that shape how we engage in the work" ("Archeology of the Self"). She points out that, "if you don't do that work for yourself how are you really going to be open to the stories of your students?"  Below we have generated a small list of resources for different kinds self-work and reflection. If you have others you think could be generative please do reach out to share them. (link to feedback form)
-"The Archeology of the Self." This is Yolanda Sealey-Ruiz discussing in more detail what she means by an archaeology of the self. Here also is a link her webpage, where you can find other information, including links to workshops she offers. Finally, here is a link to her recent collection of poems, Love from the Vortex (2020), which she describes as part of her own self-work and self-archaeology around love and intimacy.
-"Deconstructing Whiteliness in the Globalized Classroom" This is a co-authored account of two instructors, Dae-Joong Kim and Bobbi Olson, one Korean and one white, reflecting on their own attempts and failures to break with what they call "whiteliness" in their classroom practice. 
-"Making Commitments to Racial Justice Actionable" Here Rasha Diab, Thomas Ferrel, and Beth Godbee articulate the need to move beyond what they call "originary confessional narratives" into the space of action through self-work and work-with-others. 
-"Healing Racialized Trauma: A Conversation with Resmaa Menakem and Tara Brach." This is an interview between Resmaa Menakem and Tara Brach, in which Menakem explains the concept of somatic abolitionism and the idea that we can work to heal racism and racial trauma through embodied practice. Menakem's book, My Grandmother's Hands: Racialized Trauma and the Pathway to Mending Our Hearts and Bodies (2017), is full of exercises for this kind of embodied practice and can be found here.