A black square graphic that says Mini Episode along the top and Rayah's Recommendations along the bottom. The font is black with white outline in all caps with an aqua drop shadow. In the center is a graphic with a pair of pink, over ear headphones, a white smartphone with a pink screen, and an open book with blank pages. behind the trio of items is some blobby aqua shapes.

This week we have a short episode for you while we prepare for some larger conversations!
Every other week, Amira and Rayah will put out mini episodes with tips, updates, challenges, or practical tools to use in your daily justice work! 

This week is Rayah and she wanted to talk about a few of the books and podcasts that have helped in her journey of (un)learning!

(I linked to the amazon listings so you can see the books themselves but I HIGHLY encourage you to order these from local independent bookstores – if you’re in the Portland area, check out Third Eye Books)


The End of Policing – Alex Vitale

This book is EXCELLENT for understanding the historical and current role of the police in our country and their ties with racism and white supremacy. Not only does it break it down into the categories of policing like – gang suppression, drugs, mental health calls, and border policing – each section also talks about reforms and alternatives to the current methods. 


Eloquent Rage – Brittany Cooper

The subtitle to this book is “A Black Feminist discovers her superpower” and it is a powerful and honest volume from the inside. Brittany explains her experiences in a raw, bold, yet elegant way. The “angry Black woman” is a long time trope that has been weaponized against Black women as a way to minimize and write off their experiences and this book explains why that idea needs to die. While at times funny and exciting, it also had me in tears as I recognized just how much harm is piled on Black women by both stereotypes and the systems of power in the United States. 


The Body Keeps the Score – Bessel van der Kolk

This book is about trauma and mental health and not race specifically. It is an invaluable work on how important human relationships are, what is happening in the body and mind, what kinds of events cause trauma, and what we can do about it. This book is probably one of the most influential books I have ever read and completely transformed the way I looked at myself, others, and the grand whole of humanity. 


Some podcasts I have found to be incredibly helpful are:

ThroughlineRund Abdelfatah and Ramtin Arablouei are incredible hosts and masterfully weave together the connection between current events and their historical contexts. 

Capitalism – God wants you to be rich

The Invention of Race

Reframing History: Bananas


Faith and Capital – Faith and Capital is a show about the intersections of Christianity and Capitalism by Chase Tibbs

Tamar (and Other Disposable People) Part 1 and Part 2

Blind Faith – A Rising Tide Lifts All Boats

Ruth and the Hidden Labor of Social Reproduction – Part One and Part 2


Code SwitchIs the fearless conversations about race that you’ve been waiting for! Hosted by Shereen Marisol Meraji and Gene Demby, this podcast tackles the subject of race head-on.

Where Are You Really From?

Do the Golden Arches Bend Toward Justice?

What’s in a Karen?


RadioLab – Hosted by Jad Abumrad, Lulu Miller, and Latif Nasser, Radiolab is a beautiful crafted podcast about a huge range of topics and in-depth explorations. 

Border Trilogy

Gonads Series

G: Unfit 


Behind the Bastards – Robert Evans brings on a guest and uses his platform to talk about all the worst bastards in history and how they got there. This podcast is definitely more of an adult show that uses humor to break up some truly horrifying history. 

John Harvey Kellogg Part 1 & Part 2

How The John Birch Society Invented The Modern Far Right Part One and Part 2 

Focus on the Family: James Dobson Part 1 and Part 2


Lastly, we have a patreon that helps us pay for this podcast and we would love to get to the point that this podcast pays for itself. We would love to continue to do this work and you can help make it possible! Patrons also get to submit questions for us to answer on the podcast!

Love y’all!


(Episode transcript)