On the founding of our country: books TBR

In our latest edition of “books to add to your To Be Read pile (TBR)”, we want to recommend three books that talk about some of the founding aspects of our country. And let’s face it, with all the talk about trying to keep Critical Race Theory and our country’s true history out of schools, books like these are not only appreciated but needed!

First up is A New Origin Story: The 1619 Project, written by ERA Coalition friend Nikole Hannah-Jones! We’re so excited to dig into this one – a true historic retelling of this country’s founding. It looks like it will be an expansion on the original 1619 Project, and we’re HERE FOR IT!

A little bit more about the Project: The 1619 Project is The New York Times Magazine’s award-winning reframing of American history that placed slavery and its continuing legacy at the center of our national narrative. The project, which was initially launched in August of 2019, offered a revealing new origin story for the United States, one that helped explain not only the persistence of anti-Black racism and inequality in American life today, but also the roots of so much of what makes the country unique. 

Learn more about the 1619 Project, the book, and where you can buy it online!

Next up is the book Gendered Citizenship: The Original Conflict over the Equal Rights Amendment, 1920–1963. This one should be required reading for all the powers-that-be who are still in denial over the need for an Equal Rights Amendment!

Written by ERA Coalition friend Rebecca DeWolf, this tome covers the entire history of the ERA from before it’s official introduction in Congress right up through the tumultuous fight over equality in the 1960s, and it’s reverberations still being felt today. As we peer over the precipice of finally adding the ERA to the Constitution, this book couldn’t be more relevant to the work we all do every day.

You can find out more about related talks and events, the book itself, and where to buy it online.

And last but certainly not least is The People’s Constitution: 200 Years, 27 Amendments, and the Promise of a More Perfect Union. This one is co-authored by John F. Kowal and Wilfred U. Codrington III, who are also very well known to the ERA Coalition and our partner organizations through their work with the Brennan Center.

Kowal and Codrington III chronicle the history of the writing of the U.S. Constitution and how it’s been updated and changed through the amending structure to become the document we know today.

A little more about the book: The real history of the Constitution is the astonishing story of how subsequent generations have reshaped our founding document amid some of the most colorful, contested, and controversial battles in American political life. It’s a story of how We the People have improved our government’s structure and expanded the scope of our democracy during eras of transformational social change.

With the possibility of a 28th Amendment looming on the horizon for us, how will this change the way we see this founding document? Learn more about the book and where you can buy it online.

You all have your weekend reading assignments, should you choose to accept them. Let’s get to work!

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