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Books about racism: Recommendations to mark Stephen Lawrence Day

It’s 28 years since Stephen Lawrence was killed in a racist attack. His brother Stuart recommends books about racism, to help you educate yourself and your family.

To mark Stephen Lawrence Day, Stephen’s brother Stuart Lawrence has recommended five books about racism and race for young people.

His recommendations will help anyone better understand racism, talk about race with your family and offer suggestions about how to be a better ally.

Stephen Lawrence Day takes place on April 22 and is a national day of commemoration for Stuart’s brother who was killed in a racially-motivated attack in 1993.

Books about racism, recommended by Stuart Lawrence

Black and British by David Olusoga

All the stuff that we think that we know about British history has other layers to it. And this book allows us to talk about that. I’ve been reading this book with my son. It was great to be able to start a conversation with him about these sorts of things.

This Book Is Anti-Racist by Tiffany Jewell and Aurelia Durand

I’ve met so many people who want to say to me, ‘I’ve got a black mate and I can understand the struggle.’ Cool. I don’t need to know you got a black mate. All I really need people to say is, I’m an anti-racist.

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This book is a great way to get young people to understand that it’s okay to talk about these issues. And if you don’t know something, it’s okay to learn about stuff as well.

Amazing Grace by Mary Hoffman

This is one of the first books about children of colour that I could find to talk about. I remember my mum buying this for my sister, so this is quite a personal book to me.

Dream Big! Heroes Who Dared to be Bold by Sally Morgan

This book talks about fearless people who have stood up and put themselves out to be counted. Mo Farah is in there, David Olusoga is in there. It was really inspiring to see a book that shows different representation in a positive light.

Stories for Boys Who Dare to be Different by Ben Brooks 

I think any book that I want you to talk about around race, equality, diversity, inclusion has to celebrate being different. Those differences make the world so much more beautiful and a better place.

Stuart Lawrence’s book Silence is Not an Option: You Can Impact the World for Change is out now (Scholastic, £14.99).

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