2Leaf Press, a black and brown female-led nonprofit press founded in 2012, challenges the status quo by publishing books on diversity and social justice. As protests against racial injustice and police brutality have spread across and the United States after the killings of George Floyd, Breonna Taylor, and Ahmaud Arbery, and while COVID-19 is ravaging black and brown neighborhoods, the demand for books about racism, diversity, and race relations has soared. 2Leaf Press publishes books that can help.
Rather than publish books that use the anti-racist approach of "teaching/preaching" with a dogmatic approach with seminar-like discussions, 2Leaf Pressís approach is fundamental: we provide genuine and earnest narratives that have the power to change lives. It is what James Baldwin did in his writings: he let the narratives do the difficult work in order to affect the reader. And it is reflected in our books, such as WHAT DOES IT MEAN TO BE WHITE IN AMERICA, THE BEIGING OF AMERICA, BLACK LIVES HAVE ALWAYS MATTERED, and SUBSTANCE OF FIRE.
"We believe the implications about race are much broader," says publisher Gabrielle David. "When you talk about race issues, it is not just a black and white dichotomy, it is about learning different cultures or subcultures first-hand through personal narratives. And then looking within oneís self on how to deal with those differences. Buying diverse books from different perspectives by diverse authors is more effective and meaningful than trying to find one book that tells people what they have to do, and then think they have done the work.
There is no manual to deal with racism and discrimination, it is a life-long commitment and process. 2Leaf Pressís mission is to publish books that connect people to each other. For example, while WHAT DOES IT MEAN TO BE WHITE IN AMERICA reveals what white people think about white culture. It should be read by everyone, including people of color, so we can learn about each other and engage in meaningful conversations."
For black and brown publishers like 2Leaf Press, who have been promoting these titles for years, it is encouraging that people are turning to books to further their own knowledge about race relations in this country and looking to make change.
The more people become culturally aware, the more they will become willing to talk openly about racism, diversity and race relations. Below is 2Leaf Pressís Diversity Reading List, which provides a good starting point designed to meet a broad variety of readerís needs and experiences. Our books are available on most online outlets and bookstores. We are also offering a 20% discount on all 2Leaf Press titles exclusively through our distributorís website, University of Chicago Press. Use Promo Code: 2LPDIVERSITY.† Happy Reading!
2Leaf Press Diversity Reading List:
AN UNINTENTIONAL ACCOMPLICE: A PERSONAL PERSPECTIVE ON WHITE RESPONSIBILITY by Carolyn L. Baker. The author shares her awakening to the realities of white privilege, tackles institutionalized discrimination, and the illusion of the American dream, with calls for a radically inclusive feminism.
WHAT DOES IT MEAN TO BE WHITE IN AMERICA? BREAKING THE WHITE CODE OF SILENCE, A COLLECTION OF PERSONAL NARRATIVES edited by Gabrielle David and Sean Frederick Forbes. The first of its kind, this collection of 82 personal narratives reflects a vibrant range of stories from white Americans who speak frankly and openly about race, not only as it applies to people of color, but as it applies to themselves.
BLACK LIVES HAVE ALWAYS MATTERED: A COLLECTION OF ESSAYS, POEMS, AND PERSONAL NARRATIVES edited by Abiodun Oyewole. Collectively, these 79 contributors provide a call-to-action that challenges readers to confront long-held values and beliefs about black lives, as well as white privilege and fragility, as it surveys the historical and contemporary ravages of racism and its persistence of structural inequality.
THE BEIGING OF AMERICA: PERSONAL NARRATIVES ABOUT BEING MIXED RACE IN THE 21ST CENTURY edited by Cathy J. Schlund-Vials, Sean Frederick Forbes and Tara Betts. Edited by mixed-race scholars, this collection consists of 39 poets, writers, teachers, professors, artists and activists, whose personal narratives articulate the complexities of interracial life.
DREAM OF THE WATER CHILDREN, MEMORY AND MOURNING IN THE BLACK PACIFIC by Fredrick Kakinami Cloyd. A memoir explores the specific contours of Japanese and African American cultures, as well as the broader experience of biracial and multicultural identity.
SUBSTANCE OF FIRE: GENDER AND RACE IN THE COLLEGE CLASSROOM by Claire Millikin. Explores how race and gender function within the privilege of the four-year college classroom with contributions from graduates and faculty, who interrogate the forces of sexism and racism from the various perspectives of gay, straight, biracial, white, African American, and Latino writers and artists.
ADVENTURES IN BLACK AND WHITE by Philippa Schuyler edited by Tara Betts. The reissuance of a memoir-travelogue first published in 1960, with minor edits and annotations of the original text, about Americaís first internationally-acclaimed mixed race celebrity.
MOTHER OF ORPHANS: THE TRUE AND CURIOUS STORY OF IRISH ALICE, A COLORED MANíS WIDOW by Dedria Humphries Barker. The compelling true story of Alice, an Irish-American woman who defied rigid social structures to form a family with a black man in Ohio in 1899, and her legacy in the twenty-first century. †
OUR NUYORICAN THING: THE BIRTH OF A SELF-MADE IDENTITY by Samuel Diaz Carrion. A cultural dialogue about Puerto Rican culture seen through the eyes of a "Puerto Rican Indiana Jones" who has quietly studied the trade route of a new language.
STRENGTH OF SOUL by Naomi Raquel Enright. Proposes tangible strategies and ideas on how to challenge systemic racism through naming and resisting the ideology of racial difference and of the white supremacy at its root.
THE FOURTH MOMENT: JOURNEYS FROM THE KNOWN TO THE UNKNOWN, A MEMOIR by Carole J. Garrison. A series of stories that reflect the acute perceptions of a woman for whom every day is a new adventure－from suburban housewife to becoming a single mom, to police officer to returning to school to becoming a professor, to working in Cambodia－ offers recollections from a woman whose experiences cover an extraordinary range of places, people, and interests.
WHEREABOUTS: STEPPING OUT OF PLACE, AN OUTSIDE IN LITERARY & TRAVEL ANTHOLOGY by Brandi Dawn Henderson. Presents 38 emerging and established global storytellers who share stories discussing what it means to enter a new place; the kinds of worlds that exist to others that we, ourselves, do not experience; and how place and/or circumstance can affect who and how we are.
ABOUT THE PRESS: 2Leaf Press is a Florida-based nonprofit organization that challenges the status quo by publishing alternative fiction, non‐fiction, poetry and bilingual works by activists, academics, poets and authors. We are especially dedicated to publishing scholarship regarding diversity and social justice that is accessible to the general public. www.2leafpress.org