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Vashon Reads about Racism, Culture, and White Privilege

Everyone is invited to attend the launch of Vashon Reads about Racism, Culture, and White Privilege, at the Vashon Bookshop, June 2nd, 6 pm.

Lois Watkins, author of What It Was Like, and Janie Starr, contributor to What Does It Mean To Be White In America?, will provide an interactive reading of their works. Watkins, black, and Starr, white, are both islanders who grew up in the southeast, living in completely different worlds. They have come to their activism from flip sides of the race coin.
In order to involve all islanders in Vashon Reads, books have been selected to appeal to all age groups. Copies will be available at the Bookshop, and at the Vashon Library.

An overview of these books on June 2nd will include the reasoning behind the choices, a brief discussion of white privilege and allies, and the team’s vision for on-going action.

Picture Books: Happy in our Skin, Golden Domes & Silver Lanterns, These Hands,
Abuela (English and Spanish)

Young Readers:  Migrant, Mr. Lincoln’s Way
Teen – Adult:  All American Boys

Adult:  Waking Up White and Finding Myself in the Story of Race
In addition, an extensive reading list has been created and will be available at the event, or through request to

Vashon Reads is part of an island-wide movement to acknowledge and address racism on Vashon and beyond. It emerged from outrage over the murders of innumerable people-of-color nationwide, racist events locally, and confusion about the role white people, in particular, have to play in advocating for racial equity.

Ann Braden, a newspaper journalist, who lived from 1924-2006, wrote, “The battle is and always has been a battle for the hearts and minds of White people in this country. The fight against racism is our issue. It’s not something that we’re called on to help People of Color with. We need to become involved with it as if our lives depended on it because really, in truth, they do.”       

Come meet your neighbors, join the conversation, buy books, and explore ways to make Vashon a welcoming place for all.