cover image Do the Work!: An Antiracist Activity Book

Do the Work!: An Antiracist Activity Book

W. Kamau Bell and Kate Schatz. Workman, $22.95 (176p) ISBN 978-1-5235-1428-1

Comedian Bell (The Awkward Thoughts of W. Kamau Bell) and activist Schatz (Rad American History A–Z) deliver a jam-packed guide to “dismantling white supremacy in America.” Pitching the book as a “companion to all the antiracist books you bought for your book club back in June of 2020,” the authors enliven their history lessons with interactive exercises: a discussion of white settler colonialism asks readers to locate the unceded Indigenous land where they live; a pop quiz turns out to be taken from Alabama’s 1965 Literacy Test, which disenfranchised Black and poor voters (sample question: “Does enumeration affect the income tax levied on citizens in various states?”). Bell and Schatz also explain how Bacon’s Rebellion, an uprising by “angry servants of European and African descent” in 1670s Virginia, led to the passage of laws creating a racial hierarchy in America; spotlight Black women activists and writers, including Zora Neale Hurston and critical race theory scholar Kimberlé Crenshaw; prompt readers to identify inventions by Black Americans in a drawing of a cookout; and illustrate with a connect-the-dot puzzle how gerrymandering works to “dilute the power of urban voters.” Enhanced by bold graphics, vibrant illustrations, and sharp humor, this call to action strikes the right balance between outrage and inspiration. (July)