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Reading List

by Students Promoting Empowerment and Knowledge (SPEaK)


  1. Go Tell It On the Mountain, James Baldwin
  2. The Bluest Eye, Toni Morrison
  3. The Book of Embraces, Eduardo Galeano
  4. Drowning in Fire, Craig S. Womack
  5. The Brief Wondrous Life of Oscar Wao, Junot Díaz
  6. Their Eyes Were Watching God, Zora Neale Hurston
  7. When the Emperor was Divine, Julie Otsuka
  8. Parable of the Sower, Octavia E. Butler
  9. Y no se lo tragó la tierra, Tomás Rivera
  10. Giovanni’s Room, James Baldwin
  11. Flight, Sherman Alexie
  12. Under the Feet of Jesus, Helena María Viramontes
  13. Middle Passage, Charles Johnson
  14. Tropic of Orange, Karen Tei Yamashita
  15. Monkey Bridge, Lan Cao
  16. The Namesake, Jhumpa Lahiri
  17. The Lonely Londoners, Samuel Selvon
  18. Sula, Toni Morrison
  19. Bailey’s Cafe, Gloria Naylor
  20. Ceremony, Leslie Marmon Silko
  21. Atomic Aztex, Sesshu Foster
  22. Bless Me Ultima, Rudolfo Anaya
  23. Fools Crow, James Welch


  1. Caliban and the Yankees: Trinidad and the United States Occupation, Harvey Neptune
  2. Avengers of the New World: The Story of the Haitian Revolution, Laurent Dubois
  3. Ain’t I a Woman?: Black Women and Feminism, bell hooks
  4. Killing the Black Body, Dorothy Roberts
  5. Terrorist Assemblages, Jasbir Puar
  6. Queer Phenomenology, Sara Ahmed
  7. Open Veins of Latin America, Eduardo Galeano
  8. Queer (In)Justice: The Criminalization of LGBT People in the United States, by Andrea Richie, Joey Mogul, and Kay Whitlock
  9. Queer Ideas, eds. Alissa Solomon, Paisley Currah, and Martin Duberman
  10. The Location of Culture, Homi K. Bhabha
  11. This Bridge Called My Back, edited by Gloría Anzaldúa and Cherríe Moraga
  12. Prison Notebooks, Antonio Gramsci
  13. Gender Trouble, Judith Butler
  14. Orientalism, Edward W. Said
  15. The Pedagogy of the Oppressed, Paulo Freire
  16. Epistemology of the Closet, Eve Kosofsky Sedgwick
  17. The Colonizer and the Colonized, Albert Memmi
  18. The Wretched of the Earth, Frantz Fanon
  19. Discourse on Colonialism, Aimé Césaire
  20. Immigrant Acts, Lisa Lowe
  21. Racism Without Racists, Eduardo Bonilla-Silva
  22. Medical Apartheid, Harriet A. Washington
  23. The Karma of Brown Folk, Vijay Prashad
  24. Terrifying Muslims, Junaid Rana
  25. Are Prisons Obsolete?, Angela Davis
  26. Zami A New Spelling of My Name, Audre Lorde
  27. The World Turned, John D’Emilio
  28. My Dangerous Desires: A Queer Girl Dreaming Her Way Home, Amber Hollibaugh
  29. Tacit Subjects, Carlos Decena


  1. “Listen Up: Voices from the Next Feminist Generation, New Expanded Edition,” ed. Barbara Findlen
  2. “Only Skin Deep: Changing Visions of the American Self,”eds. Coco Fusco and Brian Wallis
  3. “The Race for Theory,” Barbara Christian
  4. “The Laugh of the Medusa,” Hélène Cixous
  5. “Can the Subaltern Speak?,” Gayatri Chakravorty Spivak
  6. “Compulsory Heterosexuality and Lesbian Existence,” Adrienne Rich
  7. “The Negro Artist and the Racial Mountain,” Langston Hughes
  8. “Society Must Be Defended,” Michel Foucault
  9. “Hegel and Haiti,” Susan Buck-Morss
  10. “Heteropatriarchy and the Three Pillars of White Supremacy,” Andrea Smith
  11. “Beyond and Not Beyond Black and White: Deconstruction Has a Politics,” Mari Matsuda
  12. “A Military Job is Not Economic Justice,” Queers for Economic Justice


  1. Collected Poems by Audre Lorde
  2. June Jordan
  3. Gwendolyn Brooks
  4. K. Silem Mohammad
  5. Nikki Giovanni
  6. Commons, Myung Mi Kim
  7. Recyclopedia, Harryette Mullen
  8. Montage of a Dream Deferred, Langston Hughes
  9. Loving in the War Years, Cherríe Moraga
  10. Borderlands/La Frontera, Gloría Anzaldúa
  11.  It Ain’t the Truth if it Doesn’t Hurt by Brandon Lacy Campos
  12. Pablo Neruda


1. The Black Power Mixtape, dir. Göran Hugo Olsson, 2011
2. Life and Debt, dir. Stephanie Black, 2001
3. Freedom Riders, dir. Stanley Nelson, 2010
4. African Underground: Democracy in Dakar, dirs. Ben Herson, Magee McIlvaine,  
Christopher Moore, 2009
5. The Battle of Algiers, dir. Gille Pontecorvo, 1966
6. The Murder of Fred Hampton, dir. Howard Alk, 1971
7. Paris is Burning, dir. Jennie Livingston, 1990
8. Hip Hop: Beyond Beats and Rhymes, dir. Byron Hurt, 2006
9. Latin Music, USA, dir. Daniel McCabe, 2009
10. How Do I Look, dir. Wolfgang Busch, 2006
11. Gun Hill Road, dir. Rashaad Ernesto Green, 2011


  1. Radical Faggot, http://radfag.wordpress.com/
  2. My Feet Only Walk Forward, http://myfeetonlywalkforward.blogspot.com/
  3. That Needs To Go http://thatneedstogo.tumblr.com
  4. Threadbared http://iheartthreadbared.wordpress.com/
  5. Crunk Feminist Collective http://crunkfeministcollective.wordpress.com/
  6. Native Appropriations nativeappropriations.blogspot.com
  7. Stuff White People Do stuffwhitepeopledo.blogspot.com
  8. Colorlines http://www.colorlines.com/
  9. Sociological Images http://thesocietypages.org/socimages/
  10.  Charlie Vásquez: Meditations, http://charlievazquez.wordpress.com/
  11.  The Song of These Streets, http://xiomarastreets.blogspot.com/


1. Fences, August Wilson
2. The Mountaintop, Katori Hall (on Broadway)
3. A Raisin in the Sun, Lorraine Hansberry
4. Midnight Moon at the Greasy Spoon, Miguel Piñero
5. The Sun Always Shines for the Cool, Miguel Piñero
6. Angels in America, Tony Kushner


So how do I get these texts?
Google them! Often you can find PDFs or .zip or .rar files of essays or even entire books online!

Use Butler Library’s website! As college students we have access to so many resources outside of just physical collections. Especially helpful is the articles search function - we have access to almost any article that was ever published in a scholarly journal.

Get an AAAARG.ORG account! AAAARG.ORG is a password protected website where users can upload or download thousands of texts. Although the site leans toward Western philosophy you can find a good amount of ethnic studies/feminist studies/queer studies readings and make requests for uploads too.

Ask us! Some of us have copies or scans of books and articles and we love to share :)


These readings seem pretty advanced, where can I get a more introductory list of texts for ethnic studies and its subfields (Af Am, Asian Am, Chican@, Latin@, Native Am)?
The syllabus for Professor Gary Okihiro’s Introduction to Comparative Ethnic Studies is a very comprehensive overview of the discipline. Talk to us individually about our knowledge of subfields and we will be able to recommend some starting points! We hope to have more focused reading lists next semester.

SPEaK is awesome! How do I get involved?
We hold weekly planning meetings on Sundays from  9-10pm in the Malcolm X Lounge and all are free to attend. We hope to have more study breaks and teach-ins next semester!

Feel goods

“If I didn’t define myself for myself, I would be crunched into other people’s fantasies for me and eaten alive.” - Audre Lorde