Wednesday, August 20, 2014

Curated Bibliography on Whiteness, Silence and Teaching

Whiteness (M.A Reilly, 2012)
Curated Bibliography on Whiteness, Silence and Teaching

Carter, Stephanie Power. (2007). “Reading All that White Crazy Stuff:” Black Young Women Unpacking Whiteness in a High School British Literature Classroom.  Journal of Classroom Interaction, 41 (2),  42 - 54.
Abstract: The article uses sociolinguistic and ethnographic methods and Black feminist theory to explore the classroom interactions of Pam and Natonya, two Black young females, during one event in a required high school British literature classroom. The event is presented as a telling case to explore gendered and racial complexities facing young Black female students in a British literature class, dominated by literature written from a Eurocentric perspective, primarily by White males. The telling case was analyzed to explore how Whiteness functioned within the British literature curriculum and classroom interactions and how the two Black young women were negatively positioned as a result of classroom interactions around the curriculum. The analysis made visible how Pam and Natonya were constantly negotiating whiteness within the British Literature curriculum. Their experiences are important as they afford educators and educational researchers the opportunity to see some of the challenges faced by historically underrepresented students who may have been marginalized by Whiteness within the curriculum.
Castagno, Angelina E. (2008). “I Don’t Want to Hear That!”: Legitimating Whiteness through Silence in Schools. Anthropology & Education, 39 (3), 314-333.
Abstract: In this article, I examine the ways in which silences around race contribute to the maintenance and legitimation of Whiteness. Drawing on ethnographic data from two demographically different schools, I highlight patterns of racially coded language, teacher silence, silencing students’ race talk, and the conflating of culture with race, equality with equity, and difference with deficit. These silences and acts of silencing create and perpetuate an educational culture in which inequities are ignored, the status quo is maintained, and Whiteness is both protected and entrenched
Cochran-Smith, Marilyn. (2003). The Multiple Meanings of Multicultural Teacher Education: A Conceptual Framework. Teacher Education Quarterly, 7-26.

DeBlase, Gina. (2000). Missing Stories, Missing Lives: Urban Girls (Re)Constructing Race and Gender in the Literacy Classroom.  Paper presented at the Annual Meeting of the American Educational Research Association (New Orleans, LA, April 24-28, 2000).
Abstract: This study examined the ways in which eighth grade girls in an urban middle school constructed social identities through their experiences with literary texts. It focused on what sociocultural representations about female identity and gendered expectations emerged in the transactions in the literacy events these girls experienced in English class. It also examined what meanings girls made from these gendered representations and how girls from diverse racial and ethnic backgrounds took up and/or resisted the messages. Finally, the study investigated how the girls' transactions with literacy events in English class linked to their perceptions, insights, and understandings of the larger social order. Data were collected via observations, interviews with students and teachers, and collection of classroom artifacts. The seven study findings focused on ideologies of control, power, and cultural uniformity; new criticism and unexamined standpoints of social identity; constructing literature as removed from the lived social experience of girls' lives; silencing, sameness, and missed opportunities for dialogue; girls' lived experiences influencing their transactions with literature; literacy as a tool for socializing girls into culturally mainstream society; and fractured identities and colliding ideologies. Four implications for pedagogy and teacher education are listed.
García, Eugene; Arias, M. Beatriz, Harris, Nancy J. Murri and Carolina Serna. (2010). Developing Responsive Teachers: A Challenge for a Demographic Reality. Journal of Teacher Education 61(1-2) 132–142.
Abstract: In this article, the authors reflect on the preparation of teachers for English learners (ELs) and articulate the importance of enhancing teacher knowledge through contact and collaboration with diverse ethnolinguistic communities. The authors build on recent research on the preparation of teachers for cultural responsiveness and linguistic diversity and recommend a situated preparation within EL communities that fosters the development of teacher knowledge of the dynamics of language in children’s lives and communities. The authors begin their review by summarizing recent demographic developments for ELs. This section is followed by a brief review of the context of education for ELs. The authors summarize the most recent research on culturally and linguistically responsive teacher preparation and focus on a framework that includes developing teacher knowledge through contact, collaboration, and community.
Hayes, Cleveland, Juárez, Brenda & Veronica Escoffrey-Runnels. (2014). We Were There Too: Learning from Black Male Teachers in Mississippi about Successful Teaching of Black StudentsDemocracy & Education, 22 (1), Article 3.
Abstract: Applying culturally relevant and social justice–oriented notions of teaching and learning and a critical race theory (CRT) analysis of teacher preparation in the United States, this study examines the oral life histories of two Black male teachers recognized for their successful teaching of Black students. These histories provide us with a venue for identifying thematic patterns across the two teachers' educational philosophies and pedagogical practices and for analyzing how these teachers' respective personal and professional experiences have influenced their individual and collective approaches to teaching and learning.

Hayes, Cleveland and Brenda Juárez. (2012). There Is No Culturally Responsive Teaching Spoken Here: A Critical Race Perspective.  Democracy & Education, 20 (1), 1-14.
Abstract: In this article, we are concerned with White racial domination as a process that occurs in teacher education and the ways it operates to hinder the preparation of teachers to effectively teach all students. Our purpose is to identify and highlight moments within processes of White racial domination when individuals and groups have and make choices to support rather than to challenge White supremacy. By highlighting and critically examining moments when White racial domination has been instantiated and recreated within our own experiences, we attempt to open up a venue for imagining and re-creating teacher education in ways that are not grounded in and dedicated to perpetuating White supremacy.
hooks, bell. (1991). Representing Whiteness in the Black ImaginationCultural Studies, 338-346.

Hytten, Kathy and Amee Adkins. (2001). Thinking through a Pedagogy of Whiteness. Educational Theory, 51 (4) 433-450.

Kincheloe, Joe L. (1999). The Struggle to Define and Reinvent Whiteness: A Pedagogical AnalysisCollege Literature 26. 162-194.

Kincheloe, Joe and Shirley Steinberg. (1998) Addressing the Crisis of Whiteness: Reconfiguring White Identity in a Pedagogy of Whiteness. In White Reign: Deploying Whiteness in America. J. Kincheloe, S. Steinberg, N. Rodriguez, and R. Chennault, eds. pp. 3–30. New York: St. Martin’s Griffin.

Ladson-Billings, G. (2006). Yes, but how do we do it? In J. Landsman, & C. W. Lewis (Eds).
White teachers, diverse classrooms (pp. 29-42). Sterling: Stylus.

Leonardo, Zeus. (2002). The Souls of White Folk: critical pedagogy, whiteness studies, and
globalization discourse.  Race Ethnicity and Education, (5) 1, 29-50.
Abstract: At the turn of the 1900s, W. E. B. Du Bois argued that the problem of the color line was the twentieth century’s main challenge. The article argues that critical pedagogy beneŽfits from an intersectional understanding of whiteness studies and globalization discourse. Following Du Bois, it suggests that the problem of the twenty-Žfirst century is the global color line. As capitalism stretches across nations, its partnership with race relations also evolves into a formidable force. Appropriating concepts from globalization, the author deŽfines a global approach to race, and in particular whiteness, in order to argue that the problem of white racial privilege transcends the nation state. Using concepts such as multinationalism, fragmentation, and  flexibility, a critical pedagogy of whiteness promotes an expanded notion of race that includes global anti-racist struggles. Finally, the article concludes by suggesting that educators consider seriously the insights of the neo-abolitionist movement.
McIntosh, Peggy. (1988).  White Privilege: Unpacking the Invisible Backpack.

Rogers, Rebecca & Melissa Mosley. (2006). Racial literacy in a second-grade classroom: Critical race theory, whiteness studies, and literacy research. Reading Research Quarterly, 41 (4), 462-495.
Abstract: There is a pervasive silence in literacy research around matters of race, especially with both young people and white people. In this article we illustrate that young white children can and do talk about race, racism, and anti-racism within the context of the literacy curriculum. Using a reconstructed framework for analyzing "white talk," one that relies on literature in whiteness studies and critical race theory and draws on critical discourse analytic frameworks, we illustrate what talk around race sounds like for white second-grade students and their teachers. This research makes several contributions to the literature. We provide a detailed method for coding interactional data using critical discourse analysis and a lens from critical race theory and whiteness studies. We also illustrate the instability of racial-identity formation and the implications for teachers and students when race is addressed in primary classrooms. Ultimately, we argue that racial-literacy development, like other literate process in the classroom, must be guided.
Rothman, Joshua. (2014). The Origins of “Privilege”. The New Yorker.

Said, Edward. (1978). “Imaginative Geography and Its Representations: Orientalizing the Oriental.” In Orientalism, 49-72. New York: Vintage.

Villegas, Ana María Villegas and Tamara Lucas. (2002). Preparing Culturally Responsive Teachers: Rethinking the Curriculum. Journal of Teacher Education, 53 (1), 20-32.
Abstract: To successfully move the field of teacher education beyond the fragmented and superficial treatment of diversity that currently prevails, teacher educators must articulate a vision of teaching and learning in a diverse society and use that vision to systematically guide the infusion of multicultural issues throughout the preservice curriculum. A vision is offered of culturally responsive teachers that can serve as the starting point for conversations among teacher educators in this process. In this vision, culturally responsive teachers (a) are socioculturally conscious, (b) have affirming views of students from diverse backgrounds, (c) see themselves as responsible for and capable of bringing about change to make schools more equitable, (d) understand how learners construct knowledge and are capable of promoting knowledge construction, (e) know about the lives of their students, and (f) design instruction that builds on what their students already know while stretching them beyond the familiar.
Weilbacher, Gary. (2012). Standardization and Whiteness: One and the Same? Democracy & Education, 20 (2), 1-6.
Abstract: The article “There Is No Culturally Responsive Teaching Spoken Here: A Critical Race Perspective” by Cleveland Hayes and Brenda C. Juarez suggests that the current focus on meeting standards incorporates limited thoughtful discussions related to complex notions of diversity. Our response suggests a strong link between standardization and White dominance and that a focus on standards has helped to make White dominance and the discussion of race, class, gender, and language virtually invisible in teacher preparation.

Poetry Break: Lovesong

One Window (M.A. Reilly, 2013)


       - Ted Hughes

He loved her and she loved him.
His kisses sucked out her whole past and future or tried to
He had no other appetite
She bit him she gnawed him she sucked
She wanted him complete inside her
Safe and sure forever and ever
Their little cries fluttered into the curtains

Her eyes wanted nothing to get away
Her looks nailed down his hands his wrists his elbows
He gripped her hard so that life
Should not drag her from that moment
He wanted all future to cease
He wanted to topple with his arms round her
Off that moment's brink and into nothing
Or everlasting or whatever there was

Her embrace was an immense press
To print him into her bones
His smiles were the garrets of a fairy palace
Where the real world would never come
Her smiles were spider bites
So he would lie still till she felt hungry
His words were occupying armies
Her laughs were an assassin's attempts
His looks were bullets daggers of revenge
His glances were ghosts in the corner with horrible secrets
His whispers were whips and jackboots
Her kisses were lawyers steadily writing
His caresses were the last hooks of a castaway
Her love-tricks were the grinding of locks
And their deep cries crawled over the floors
Like an animal dragging a great trap
His promises were the surgeon's gag
Her promises took the top off his skull
She would get a brooch made of it
His vows pulled out all her sinews
He showed her how to make a love-knot
Her vows put his eyes in formalin
At the back of her secret drawer
Their screams stuck in the wall

Their heads fell apart into sleep like the two halves
Of a lopped melon, but love is hard to stop

In their entwined sleep they exchanged arms and legs
In their dreams their brains took each other hostage

In the morning they wore each other's face

Tuesday, August 19, 2014

Poetry Break: What Work Is

Michigan (M.A. Reilly, 2009)
 What Work Is

 - Philip  Levine

We stand in the rain in a long line
waiting at Ford Highland Park. For work.
You know what work is—if you’re
old enough to read this you know what
work is, although you may not do it.
Forget you. This is about waiting,
shifting from one foot to another.
Feeling the light rain falling like mist
into your hair, blurring your vision
until you think you see your own brother
ahead of you, maybe ten places.
You rub your glasses with your fingers,
and of course it’s someone else’s brother,
narrower across the shoulders than
yours but with the same sad slouch, the grin
that does not hide the stubbornness,
the sad refusal to give in to
rain, to the hours of wasted waiting,
to the knowledge that somewhere ahead
a man is waiting who will say, “No,
we’re not hiring today,” for any
reason he wants. You love your brother,
now suddenly you can hardly stand
the love flooding you for your brother,
who’s not beside you or behind or
ahead because he’s home trying to   
sleep off a miserable night shift
at Cadillac so he can get up
before noon to study his German.
Works eight hours a night so he can sing
Wagner, the opera you hate most,
the worst music ever invented.
How long has it been since you told him
you loved him, held his wide shoulders,
opened your eyes wide and said those words,
and maybe kissed his cheek? You’ve never
done something so simple, so obvious,
not because you’re too young or too dumb,
not because you’re jealous or even mean
or incapable of crying in
the presence of another man, no,   
just because you don’t know what work is.
Philip Levine, “What Work Is” from What Work Is. Copyright © 1992 by Philip Levine. Used by permission of Alfred A. Knopf, a division of Random House, Inc.

Monday, August 18, 2014

Poetry Break: [It’s no use / Mother dear...]

Longing (M.A. Reilly,2009)

[It’s no use / Mother dear...]


It’s no use
Mother dear, I
can’t finish my
            You may
blame Aphrodite
soft as she is
she has almost
killed me with
love for that boy

Sappho, "[It’s no use / Mother dear...]" from Sappho, Translated by Mary Barnard, published by the University of California Press. Copyright © 2012 by The Estate of Mary Barnard.

Sunday, August 17, 2014

The Sheer Geography of Your Bones: Thinking About Diverse Books & the Power to Heal

We Need Answers (M.A Reilly, Collage #85 from Collage Journal, 2014)

“Or perhaps it is that time doesn’t heal wounds at all, perhaps that is the biggest lie of them all, and instead what happens is that each wound penetrates the body deeper and deeper until one day you find that the sheer geography of your bones—the angle of your head, the jutting of your hips, the sharpness of your shoulders, as well as the luster of your eyes, the texture of your skin, the openness of your smile—has collapsed under the weight of your griefs.” ― Thrity Umrigar, The Space Between Us


For the last week it's been encouraging to see teachers and administrators making commitments to be open to and/or take the lead in discussing with (not at) students about what is happening in Ferguson, MO specifically and maters of race, race relations, and economic justice generally. These are, of course, very important conversations to have. Some suggestions/guidelines about how to discuss race and race relations can be found here, here, here. Some posts by educators that specifically explore discussion with students about institutional racism and the murder of Mike Brown can be found here, here, here.

In thinking about these potential conversations, I also recognized that meaning is ascribed by what we do and don't do, it is not given. So it's not the discussion about race, race relations, or the one about Mike Brown that you hold in class or school that most matters, but rather it's how you and I live inside classrooms and schools each day and the dignity through action that we afford others. In this post I want to advocate for an often overlooked method that can help us to better ensure broad representation in the classroom/school.


As some may have noticed I post often about diverse books. I am deeply committed to issues of representation via the texts we select and fail to select in classrooms. Text selection is no small matter. It's why during chats, such as #TitleTalk, #engchat, #Litchat and others--I have the tendency to tweet about diverse texts.  The plethora of book recommendations I see most often in twitter chats, in professional education books, and on book shelves in classrooms reflect the people teaching who are most often white, middle class women. The stories that get passed along closely reflect what is known by this majority.

I understand how this happens. The familiar is comfortable because it is known and if you're part of the group that is overly represented, then matters of representation may feel less urgent, less noticeable. But as adults we can see past our own particulars to see other.  For there is a failure when only some children get to see themselves in the texts they compose as readers and writers across 13 years of school, while others are sorely absent. We communicate worth and the absence of worth by the books and texts we privilege. Talk all we want in the aftermath of a murder, but the day to day work in or classrooms and schools shows what we value far more than our talk on a given day might do.

In 2012, Kate Hart blogged about representation on YA book covers in Uncovering YA Covers in 2011. 90% of the covers of YA books published in 2011 featured white girls (and 20% of those did not include the entire girl).  

from here

How Mike Brown, Trayvon Martin, Renisha McBride, David Ritcheson, Jordan Davis, James Byrd, Jr., Stephen Lawrence, Christopher Newsome, and Matthew Shepard were seen and not seen by self and peers throughout 13 years of classroom experiences may well have influenced why they were beaten, raped, sodomized, and/or murdered. Our capacity to see and name other as beautiful is faulty, distorted, and often missing when our vista of potential people is full of wholes. I can't help but recall my son's first week of public school. On the third day he came home and asked if he could wear his red winter coat. As it was September and he was 6, I asked why. He told me he wanted to zip his coat up over his face so that the big boys on the bus wouldn't call him angry names, like Chink. The white boys on the bus thought my son was Chinese as I suppose "all Asians look alike."  The boys found it permissible (as did some of their parents) to bully a young child because he looked different than they did. Throughout elementary and middle school, there were few if any books that my son encountered at school that featured Korean boys. A woman down the street once told me, "Well it's almost like he's white."

We must do better.

In Ellen Oh's post, Why The Pretty White Girl YA Book Cover Trend Needs to End, she writes:

Asians have long been the silent minority in this country. It's gotten so bad that when someone makes a racist remark toward Asians, they just shrug it off and make it seem like you're the one making a big deal about nothing. Or they think it's funny. Like a couple of white guys who think they are being clever by opening up a restaurant called "Roundeye Noodle shop" in Philadelphia. And then they are surprised when people get offended? The roots of that racist remark stem from Asians being called slanty-eyed chinks.  If anyone thinks "Roundeye" is not racist, you should come explain that to my youngest daughter who had the singular pleasure of being told by two boys in her class that her "small Chinese eyes" were ugly compared to her friend's "blue round-eyes." She was in kindergarten and only 5 years old. She cried for days. Words can scar you for life.

Ellen Oh is correct. Words can scar. And we know all too well when we think of Mike Brown that bullets can kill. Our vision of what is valued and beautiful remains distorted by absence--be it racial, economic, gender, sexual orientation, and/or religious.  We can bridge these differences in small, consistent ways in our classrooms--ways that can culminate into powerful narratives about beauty and worth. We must begin by being mindful of what texts we produce and consume at school, what texts we purchase, and who has the agency to do so.


So I urge you to reconsider reading aloud yet another Cynthia Rylant book or pressing into the hands of your students copies of text exemplars from the CCSS which largely privilege whiteness and wealth.  In “Laying Bare of Questions Which Have Been Hidden by Answers”: The English Language Arts Standards of the Common Core, K-5, which Jane Gangi and I authored, we write:
When we leave out children of color and the poor, in addition to reducing their ability to make the connections they need to make to become proficient readers, we are telling them they do not matter. The CCSS ELA standards’ text exemplars privilege class. Less than 7% of the exemplars represent working class people and the poor—at a time when the majority of children are working class or poor (Gangi, 2010); the Annie E. Casey foundation (2011) finds that 22% of children in America are poor. This translates to about 16.5 million children, with poverty being defined as a family of four living on less than $22,000 a year. 

We can do better. We can be more inclusive in our classrooms and schools and in doing so broaden our rather narrow beliefs about worth, beauty, difference, and love.

IV. A Few Resources

I'd recommend you follow the blog: We Need Diverse Books.


Here's a modest list of recommended book publishers whose books are beautiful, aesthetic, inclusive, and enjoyable. Groundwood Books and Lee & Low Books are my go to book publishers for a long time.

  1. Annick Press
  2. Arte Público Press and Piñata Books
  3. Boyds Mills Press
  4. Chronicle Books
  5. Cinco Puntos Press
  6. Enchanted Lion Book
  7. Fitzhenry & Whiteside
  8. Front Street (part of Boyds Mills Press)
  9. Groundwood Books
  10. Just World Books
  11. Kids Can Press
  12. Lee & Low Books
  13. Orca Book Publishers
  14. Shen Books
  15. Tara Books
  16. Tilbury House
  17. Tradewind Books
  18. Tu Books (part of Lee & Low Books)
  19. Tundra Books
  20. Wings Press

A Few Influential Articles/Posts
  1. Mirrors, Windows, and Sliding Glass Doors - Rudine Sims Bishop
  2. Paul Laurence Who? Invisibility andMisrepresentation in Children's Literature and
  3. Language Arts Textbooks  -Mary Jackson Scroggins & Jane Gangi
  4. African American Literature: Books to Stoke Dreams - Jane Gangi & Aimee Ferguson
  5. The All-White World of Children's Books - Nancy Larrick
  6. The Importance of  Diversity in Library Programs and Material Collections for Children - ALA
  7. Why Hasn’t the Number of Multicultural Books Increased In Eighteen Years? (Lee & Low Blog)
  8. Recommendations for YA Blogs & Literature - Kate Hart

External Posts Recommending Diverse Literature
CRAJ: Children's Literature Resources - Global/International Literature and Diverse Perspectives (Jane Gangi)

Here are a 30 blog posts where I recommend books.

  1. 250+ Children's Books Featuring Black Boys and Men
  2. Raising Activists: 100+ Books to Read in K-12
  3. Children's Books Focusing on Special/Exceptional Needs, Strengths and Graces
  4. Children's Books about the Middle East
  5. K-3 Global Multicultural Poetry for Shared, Choral, Paired, & Echo Reading
  6. Global Multicultural K-8 Books Celebrating Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. and His Legacy
  7. New Global Picture Books
  8. 97 Page Book of Primary Grade Comprehension Lessons With an Emphasis on Multicultural Books
  9. Forget the Stop Watch and Tune into Literature: Recommended Global Multicultural Texts for Developing Fluency (and a Love for Reading)
  10. Global Multicultural Books for Comprehension Instruction in Kindergarten
  11. Poetry Books for Grades 3-5
  12. Global Books for the First Grade
  13. Sensational Second Grade Books
  14. Global Multicultural Picture Books: Teaching Reading Comprehension in Grade 3
  15. Global Books for Grade 4
  16. Fabulous Global Books for Fifth Grade
  17. Books for Grade 7
  18. Books to Teach Writer's Craft with in Middle School
  19. Global, Multicultural Poetry Texts (Print and NonPrint) for Grades 7 - 12
  20. Reading Memoir in Grades 8-12
  21. Recommended Nonfiction for Middle School Learners
  22. Exploring LGBT Books for Children & Teens
  23. Cultural Characters: Or Why My Color Doesn't Wash Off -  Book & Instruction Suggestions
  24. 30 Children's Books about Standing Up and Making Change
  25. Latino/a Books for Elementary Children, Part I
  26. Latino/a Books for Elementary Children, Part II
  27. Latino/a Books for Elementary Children, Part III
  28. Books about Labor and Unions for 4th -12th Graders
  29. Selecting Read Aloud Books in K-5
  30. Updated 2014 Global Back to School Books

A Few Posts about Representation

  1. Troubling the Narratives
  2. Guest Blog: Children of Color and the Poor Left Way Behind in the National Governors Association and State Education Chiefs Common Core State Standards Initiative: “Text Exemplars” for Kindergarten through 5th Grade
  3. White Privilege, Classroom Discourse, and Being Other

Poetry Break: This Is Just to Say

So Much Depends (MA. Reilly 2011)

This Is Just To Say


I have eaten
the plums
that were in
the icebox

and which
you were probably
for breakfast

Forgive me
they were delicious
so sweet
and so cold
William Carlos Williams,''This Is Just to Say'' from The Collected Poems: Volume I, 1909-1939, copyright ©1938 by New Directions Publishing Corp.

Saturday, August 16, 2014

Poetry Break: Deep South

Arms Raised to the Night (M.A Reilly, 2014)

Deep South

Baton Rouge, 1940
These are savannas bluer than your dreams
Where other loves are fashioned to older music,
And the romantic in his light boat
Puts out among flamingos and water moccasins
Looking for the river that went by last year.

Even the angels wear confederate uniforms;
And when the magnolia blooms and the honeysuckle,
Golden lovers, brighter than the moon,
Read Catullus in the flaring light
Of the burning Negro in the open eye of midnight.

And the Traveller, moving in the hot swamps,
Where every human sympathy sends up the temperature,
Comes of a sudden on the hidden glacier,
Whose motives are blonder than Hitler’s choir boys.

Here is the ambiguous tenderness of ’gators
Trumpeting their loves along a hundred miles
Of rivers writhing under trees like myths—
And human existence pursues the last,
The simple and desperate life of the senses.
Since love survives only as ironic legend—
Response to situations no longer present—
Men lacking dignity are seized by pride,
Which is the easy upper-class infection.

The masters are at home in this merciless climate
But deep in the caves of their minds some animal memory
Warns of the fate of the mammoth at the end of the ice-age;
As sleeping children a toy, they hug the last, fatal error,
But their eyes are awake and their dreams shake as with palsy.

Over Birmingham where the blast furnace flowers
And beyond the piney woods in cotton country,
Continually puzzling the pale aristocrats,
The sun burns equally white man and black.

The labor which they do makes more and more
Their brotherhood condition for their whole existence;
They mint their own light, and their fusing fires
Will melt at last these centuries of ice.

This is a nightmare nimble in the Big House,
Where sleepers are wakeful, cuddling their terror,
In the empty acres of their rich beds, dreaming
Of bones in museums, where the black boys yawn.
Thomas McGrath, “Deep South” from Movie At The End of the World. Copyright © 1972 by Thomas McGrath.