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Diversity & Inclusion Reading List: Socioeconomic Class

A guide to readings and resources on the topics of ability, activism, ethnicity, race, higher education, gender, nationality, religion, sexuality, and class.

Tearing Down the Gates Book Cover  Two Nations book cover  The Color of Wealth book cover

Books

An African American and Latinx History of the United States

Spanning more than two hundred years, An African American and Latinx History of the United States is a revolutionary, politically charged narrative history, arguing that the "Global South" was crucial to the development of America as we know it. Scholar and activist Paul Ortiz challenges the notion of westward progress as exalted by widely taught formulations such as "manifest destiny" and "Jacksonian democracy," and shows how placing African American, Latinx, and Indigenous voices unapologetically front and center transforms US history into one of the working class organizing against imperialism.

Articulate While Black: Barack Obama, Language, and Race in the U.S.

H. Samy Alim and Geneva Smitherman provide new insights about President Obama and the relationship between language and race in contemporary society. Throughout, they analyze several racially loaded, cultural-linguistic controversies involving the President and his relationship to Hip Hop Culture. Using their analysis of Barack Obama as a point of departure, Alim and Smitherman reveal how major debates about language, race, and educational inequality erupt into moments of racial crisis in America.

Blaming the Poor: The Long Shadow of the Moynihan Report on Cruel Images about Poverty

Susan D. Greenbaum dismantles Moynihan's main thesis--that the so called matriarchal structure of the African American family "feminized" black men, making them inadequate workers and absent fathers, and resulting in what he called a tangle of pathology that led to a host of ills, from teen pregnancy to adult crime. She reveals how his questionable ideas have been used to redirect blame for substandard schools, low wages, and the scarcity of jobs away from the societal forces that cause these problems, while simultaneously reinforcing stereotypes about African Americans.

Class and Campus Life: Managing and Experiencing Inequality at an Elite College

Class markers aren't always visible from a distance, but socioeconomic differences permeate campus life--and the inner experiences of students--in real and sometimes unexpected ways. In Class and Campus Life, Elizabeth M. Lee shows how class differences are enacted and negotiated by students, faculty, and administrators at an elite liberal arts college for women located in the Northeast.

The Color of Wealth: the Story Behind the U.S. Racial Wealth Divide

For every dollar owned by the average white family in the United States, the average family of color has less than a dime. Wealth, not income alone, may be the most revealing index of inequality in America. The Color of Wealth lays bare the roots of the racial wealth divide and reveals the decisive role government has played in shaping our unequal society.

The Economics of Race in the United States

Brendon O'Flaherty brings the tools of economics analysis-- incentives, equilibrium, optimization, and more-- to bear on contentious issues of race in the United States. In areas ranging from quality of health care and education, to employment opportunities and housing, to levels of wealth and crime, he shows how racial differences among blacks, whites, Hispanics, and Asian Americans remain a powerful determinant in the lives of twenty-first-century Americans.

Our Compelling Interests

It is clear that in our society today, issues of diversity and social connectedness remain deeply unresolved and can lead to crisis and instability. The major demographic changes taking place in America make discussions about such issues all the more imperative. Our Compelling Interests engages this conversation and demonstrates that diversity is an essential strength that gives nations a competitive edge.

Paying the Price: College Costs, Financial Aid, and the Betrayal of the American Dream

One of the most sustained and vigorous public debates today is about the value and, crucially, the price of college. But an unspoken, outdated assumption underlies all sides of this debate: if a young person works hard enough, they'll be able to get a college degree and be on the path to a good life. That's simply not true anymore, says Sara Goldrick-Rab. Quite simply, college is far too expensive for many people today, and the confusing mix of federal, state, institutional, and private financial aid leaves countless students without the resources they need to pay for it. Drawing on a study of 3,000 young adults who entered public colleges and universities in Wisconsin in 2008 with the support of federal aid and Pell Grants, Goldrick-Rab reveals the devastating effect of these shortfalls.

Pedagogy of the Oppressed

The methodology of the late Paulo Freire, once considered such a threat to the established order that he was "invited" to leave his native Brazil, has helped to empower countless impoverished and illiterate people throughout the world. Freire's work has taken on especial urgency in the United States and Western Europe, where the creation of permanent underclass among the underprivileged and minorities in cities and urban centers is increasingly accepted as the norm

Privilege, Power, and Difference

This brief book is a groundbreaking tool for students and non-students alike to examine systems of privilege and difference in our society. Written in an accessible, conversational style, Johnson links theory with engaging examples in ways that enable readers to see the underlying nature and consequences of privilege and their connection to it.

Readings for Diversity and Social Justice

Readings for Diversity and Social Justice an anthology to covering social oppression from a social justice standpoint. With sections dedicated to racism, sexism, classism, heterosexism, and ableism, as well as transgenderism, ethno-religious oppression, and adult and ageism. Selections in each section have been chosen to keep topic coverage timely and readings accessible and engaging for students.

Teaching for Diversity and Social Justice

A sourcebook of theoretical foundations, pedagogical and design frameworks, and curricular models for social justice teaching practice. Covers the most relevant issues and controversies in social justice education in a practical, hands-on format. Includes activities and discussion questions, providing an accessible pedagogical approach to issues of oppression in classrooms. Also focuses on providing students the tools needed to apply their learning about these issues.

Tearing down the Gates: Confronting the Class Divide in American Education

Tearing Down the Gates is a powerful indictment of American education that shows how schools, colleges, and universities exacerbate inequality by providing ample opportunities for advantaged students while shutting the gates on the poor—and even the middle class.

The Third Reconstruction: Moral Mondays, Fusion Politics, and the Rise of a New Justice Movement

Moral Mondays gained national attention in 2013 as tens of thousands of citizens protested the extreme makeover of North Carolina's state government and over a thousand people were arrested in a mass civil disobedience movement. Every Monday for 13 weeks, Rev. Dr. Barber led a revival meeting on the state house lawn that brought together educators and the unemployed, civil rights and labor activists, young and old, documented and undocumented, gay and straight, black, white and brown.

Two Nations: Black and White, Separate, Hostile, Unequal

Why, despite continued efforts to increase understanding and expand opportunities, do black and white Americans still lead separate lives, continually marked by tension and hostility? In his much-lauded classic, newly updated to reflect the changing realities of race in our nation, Andrew Hacker explains the origins and meaning of racism and clarifies the conflicting theories of equality and inferiority.

Where We Stand: Class Matters

Drawing on both her roots in Kentucky and her adventures with Manhattan coop boards, bell hooks provides a successful black woman's reflection, personal, straightforward, and rigorously honest on how our dilemmas of class and race are intertwined, and how we can find ways to think beyond them

White Trash: the 400-Year Untold History of Class in America

A history of the class system in America from the colonial era to the present illuminates the crucial legacy of the underprivileged white demographic, citing the pivotal contributions of lower-class white workers in wartime, social policy, and the rise of the Republican Party.

Working Toward Whiteness: How America's Immigrants became White : the Strange Journey from Ellis Island to the Suburbs

In Working Toward Whiteness, David R. Roediger brings the history of his now-classic The Wages of Whiteness, foward into the twentieth century. Roediger recounts how American ethnnic groups considered white today -- including Jewish-, Italian-, and Polish-Americans -- once occupied a liminal racial status in their new country, and only gradually received the status of "white" Americans.

Articles

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