Style Bee - Reading & Listening Lately | 3



Hi folks, I hope you’re doing well! 2020 has certainly been a whirlwind so far. Though there have been many challenges to face I’m grateful to be alive during this time in history and feel inspired by all the changes happening around the world.

The Black Lives Matter movement has brought many things to light about systemic racism and the legacies of white supremacy within our society. Going forward I’m committed to educating myself and using that knowledge to do better both on my platform and in my personal life. Based on my DMs and the conversations we’ve been having, many of you are interested in doing so too, which is wonderful!

I thought this would be a good time to share a new instalment of what I’ve been reading and listening to lately (podcasts, books, films, channels) in an effort to encourage us all to keep unlearning and supporting anti-racism within our circles of influence. While I’m not the authority on these topics, if you’ve been looking for suggestions on content and educators to learn from, this post will offer just that. Let’s dig in!

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All book titles are linked to A Different Booklist, which is a Black-owned bookstore in Toronto highlighting authors from marginalized communities. You may also want to check out this IG post for a broader list of Black-owned online bookstores to support.

If you’re looking for alternatives to Audible, Libby (rent eBooks & audiobooks from your local library), OverDrive & Scribd look like great options, all available on the app store.

Over the past month I’ve listened to both Why I’m No Longer Talking To White People About Race by Reni Eddo-Lodge and White Fragility by Robin DiAngelo, for the second time. I felt this was necessary because, if I’m being honest, the first time I read these two books it was mostly in an effort to “tick a box” rather than truly making an effort to learn and absorb the information.

This time around I approached with a much different mindset and a genuine receptiveness to the concepts and realities presented. I made a point of listening without defensiveness and sitting with some very uncomfortable realizations. Journaling has also been helpful in unpacking the ways in which I’ve been complicit and benefited from so many of society’s white supremacist systems. From where I grew up, to where I went to school, my extra-curricular activities, my career and in particular the fashion industry within which my business exists. It’s a lot to sort through and reckon with.

I don’t share any of this to centre my own experience. I share my approach to help those who may be struggling to dismantle their own white fragility tendencies too. If you’re feeling resistant to the concepts these books cover, my best suggestion is to take a few deep breaths, relax your posture, get the pen to paper and journal it out. It helps to talk things through with a friend who’s been doing this work too (just be cautious of white solidarity or requiring free labour from your friends who are people of colour). Keeping our thoughts and feelings inside is counterproductive to deconstructing our inner biases.

Then revisit the work, and remember, it’s not about you. It’s about opening our hearts to knowledge and empathy that will help us all make better choices and take action towards equality and justice going forward.

Our unconscious biases run deep and retraining our hearts and minds is essential to seeing society’s pitfalls honestly so we’re able to move towards meaningful change.

I felt that both books offer an excellent foundation to build on and are written from different perspectives, Reni Eddo-Lodge is a Black journalist from the UK and Robin DiAngelo is a white author/facilitator from the US. Me & White Supremacy by Layal F. Saad and So You Want to Talk About Race by Ijeoma Oluo also come highly recommended for those getting started with anti-racism work.

There are lots of great anti-racism book lists being circulated. I suggest checking out the Revolution Reading List curated by @Rachel.Cargle for Elizabeth’s Bookshop & Writing Center and I’ve referred to this comprehensive list by @meghanyuriyoung several times too.

Up next on my list of anti-racism books to read are:


THE NEW JIM CROW by Michelle Alexander

I’M STILL HERE by Austin Channing Brown


This book was recommended by a follower, and the brief description reads, “Revealing how Canada’s first Prime Minister used a policy of starvation against Indigenous people to clear the way for settlement, the multiple award-winning Clearing the Plains sparked widespread debate about genocide in Canada.”.



While it’s important to dig into anti-racism texts, reading the work of Black and Indigenous authors within other genres is also key to appreciating unique perspectives. Here are some that I’m excited to read & engage with, in real paperback form, when they arrive!

SUCH A FUN AGE by Kiley Reid

FACING THE SUN by Janice Lynn Mather



AFTER THE RAIN by Alexandra Elle

FROM THE ASHES by Jesse Thistle

WOMAN OF COLOUR by LaTonya Yvette is a memoir I highly recommend as well!

This is a great list of 10 Books by Black authors from The Kit.

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While I’ve been waiting for more books to arrive, I’ve been listening to a lot of podcasts. Podcasts are honestly my favourite way to learn about history, explore new perspectives and understand social justice initiatives like defunding the police. Several of these are podcasts I’ve been listening to regularly for years now but a few are new and on my list to tune into going forward.

I believe these can all be found wherever you like to listen but I’ve linked to Apple Podcasts.

1619 from The New York Times – Listening to all 6 Episodes, they’re beautifully produced.

UNLOCKING US with Brené Brown – Listen to the conversations with Austin Channing Brown & Laverne Cox

iWEIGH with Jameela Jamil – Listen to Munroe Bergdorf

ALL MY RELATIONS with Matika Wilbur & Adrienne KeeneThis entire podcast is amazing.

CALL YOUR GIRLFRIEND with Ann Friedman & Aminatou Sow – Listen to Police Abolition

CRIMINAL with Pheobe Judge – Listen to Knock & Announce & Robert Smalls

ARMCHAIR EXPERT with Dax Shepard & Monica Padman – Listen to conversations with Heather McGhee, Ibram X. Kendi & Vivek Murthy

Recently subscribed:

Code Switch with Gene Demby & Shereen Marisol Meraji – I just listened to An Immune System about a legal technicality called qualified immunity. We have it here in Canada too and it’s no damn good!

Still Processing with Wesley Morris & Jenna Wortham

The Secret Life of Canada with Leah-Simone Bowen & Falen Johnson

This IG post is an excellent source for discovering more podcasts with Black hosts.


Film is a vital medium for story telling and while representation has been sorely lacking for too long, it feels as though there is an important shift happening. Here are some of the films, television shows and documentaries I’ve been working my way through and plan to continue exploring throughout the summer.

  • 13th* – Directed by Ava DuVernay (Netflix)
  • Dear White People* – Written & Directed by Justin Simien (Netflix)
  • American Son* – Directed by Kenny Leon (Netflix)
  • When They See Us* – Directed by Ava DuVernay (Netflix)
  • DISCLOSURE* – Produced & Directed by Laverne Cox (Netflix)
  • Just Mercy – Directed by Destin Daniel Cretton (Rent)
  • Get Out – Directed by Jordan Peele (Rent)
  • The Hate U Give – Directed by George Tillman Jr. with a screenplay by Audrey Wells (Amazon Prime)
  • Moonlight – Directed by Barry Jenkins (Rent)
  • The Death and Life of Marsha P. Johnson – Directed by David France (Netflix)
  • I May Destroy You – Directed by Michaela Coel & Sam Miller (HBO)


Recommendations from Kathleen Newman-Bremang for Cityline (this clip offers some background on each suggestion)

  • The Body Remembers When the World Broke Open* – Directed by Elle-Máijá Tailfeathers and Kathleen Hepburn (Netflix)
  • Rhymes for Young Ghouls* – Written & Directed by Jeff Barnaby (Apple TV)
  • Future History – Documentary series Hosted by Kris Nahrgang and Sarain Fox, that profiles efforts to reclaim and revive indigenous cultures in Canada. (CBC GEM)

*Marks those that I’ve watched at the time of this post, while the rest are on my list. Some of the streaming options noted may be specific to Canada.

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Instagram is an incredible catalyst for information and there are so many brilliant Black creators and educators generously sharing their work and knowledge. Here are just a few that have really resonated with me.

@UNILEARNAL28 Moments of Black Canadian History (This is a series of short profiles on YouTube & they’re all SO GOOD!)

@JANAYTHEFUTURE (IGTV) – SUNDAY SERMON SERIES – Janay is an international ambassador for Black Lives Matter and incredible orator.

@OHHAPPYDANI (IG) is an illustrator and activist creating amazing infographics that I’m sure you’ve seen being shared.

@SOPHIA_ROE (IG LIVES) – Sophia is a chef based in NYC and has become a voice of truth and clarity that I value greatly. Sophia does not mince words & I love it!

@THEGREATUNLEARN (IG) – Monthly self-paced syllabi curated by @rachel.cargle – This account will definitely push your unlearning and your thinking.


If you’re looking for a concrete action-plan to use moving forward I discovered this 7 Weeks of Anti-Racist Action resource that outlines a book, essay/speech, social media activity, movie/TV show, podcast and introspective exercise for each week. Many of the pieces are covered in this post so it’s a great way to implement anti-racist learning in an organized way.

Rachel Cargle’s Social Syllabus, Dear White Women & 30 Day Course, #DOTHEWORK are both offered for free and they are incredible resources to dig into. Remember to support the anti-racist educators you’re learning from in any way you can (financially and/or through amplification).

Reading, listening & watching are all great ways to learn but it’s also important to tune into what’s happening in our local governments. Follow local organizations on social media (@guelphcaresaboutblacklives and @guelphblackheritage are local ones I recommend), sign petitions, write or call your local representatives, be aware of voting registration deadlines and, most importantly, voting dates.

Here is a great resource if you’re looking for ways to take immediate action.

It can be daunting and often discouraging to realize how hard it is to see real change in our society, but that can’t be an excuse for complacency. We can, and must, do better.


Of course this post could be much longer. I felt it was best to curate the work that I’ve been engaging with most and I’ll be back with another instalment of Reading & Listening Lately in a couple of months. You can find a lot more resources I’ve saved in my IG stories Anti-Racism Resources highlight.

As always, I invite you to share any of the books, podcasts or accounts you’ve been learning from too! Please feel free to submit them in the comments.

To accompany this post, Style Bee has made a donation to two organizations that are doing amazing work to support Black and Indigenous women in the US & Canada. The first being The Love Land Foundation, an organization committed to showing up for communities of colour through opportunity, access, validation, and healing. The second donation was to The Native Women’s Association of Canada (NWAC), an organization working to enhance, promote, and foster the social, economic, cultural and political well-being of First Nations, Métis and Inuit women.

Leave me a comment here!

  1. Ellen says:

    Hi Lee!

    I also wanted to thank you for publishing this post. I have been working my way through some of the same titles, but many were not yet on my list!

    Best wishes from Alaska,


  2. Jen says:

    Thank you for sharing this Lee. I highly recommend Me & White Supremacy by Layla Saad! It is uncomfortable and it should be. It’s built around journaling and learning more about how we as white people support white supremacy and how we harm BIPOC daily.

    • Lee the Bee says:

      Thanks for reading and the recommendation Jen! Layla F. Saad is an incredible voice and leader. Will be adding her book to my next order 🙂 Hope you’re doing well and wish you a lovely weekend. xo