Published: Sept. 3, 2020

For the first time, the University of Colorado Boulder and the City of Boulder are bringing the campus and Boulder communities together to deepen understanding about anti-racism through their One Read program. This years’ book selection is So You Want to Talk About Race, by New York Times bestselling author, Ijeoma Oluo. The University Libraries and Boulder Public Library and are purchasing multiple copies of the book for community members to borrow.

To get involved you can:

“We are very excited to partner with the Boulder Public Library on this year’s One Read,” said Leslie Reynolds, Senior Associate Dean of the University Libraries. “By closely collaborating on programming, we create shared experiences with our campus members and Boulder neighbors that build and strengthen our ties with each other. It is our earnest hope that this is the start of a long-term partnership between our organizations to shine a light on issues important to both our communities, such as racial equity and social justice both locally and nationally.”

The University Libraries and Boulder Public Library are co-sponsoring a book discussion on Thursday, October 29 at 6 p.m. led by three CU Boulder students. CU Boulder’s Office of Diversity, Equity & Community Engagement is also planning several fall events to allow campus communities to engage with the text in preparation for the Spring Diversity Summit. At the summit, several sessions will explore the themes of the book and go deeper into anti-racism ideas and practices. Boulder Public Library will hold book discussions leading up to a virtual talk by Oluo hosted by the City of Boulder on Nov 5, 2020.

Ijeoma Oluo is a journalist whose writing covers topics such as the Black Lives Matter movement, feminism and intersectionality, misogynoir and social justice. Her book, So You Want to Talk About Race made the New York Times New and Noteworthy list and spent 13 weeks on the New York Times Best Seller list. It has been positively reviewed in Publishers Weekly, The National Book Review and Salon.

CU Boulder’s One Read program is a means to engage the entire campus community, and in this case, the Boulder community, in a discussion about the same topic. The 2019 One Read, Sabrina & Corina, by Kali Fajardo-Anstine, was chosen to expand and deepen awareness of identity and belonging.

One Reads are often used to engage in challenging conversations around diversity and inclusion and to advance understanding and action on issues of social justice, but they are just one way the University Libraries tries to spark these discussions. The Libraries also recently curated a comprehensive collection of anti-racism resources in response to the violent deaths of George Floyd and other Black people during recent incidents of police brutality across the country.