• The Publishing Post

Resources to Address Unconscious Bias

Unconscious bias is the implicit bias held about other groups and can shape our interactions with others despite our conscious efforts towards being impartial citizens. This article recommends resources for those entering the diverse publishing workspace, and who are looking for guidance for addressing their own unconscious biases.


Podcasts


Breaking the Glass Slipper: Addressing Our Biases


An intersectional feminist podcast run by Megan Leigh, Charlotte Bond and Lucy Hounsom, exploring the voices in speculative fiction. This episode discusses the unconscious attitudes behind consumer decisions and how they can be challenged by improving the media that we expose ourselves to, addressing book and screen representation.


The Diversity Gap: How To Be The Change You Want To See At Work


The Diversity Gap educates its listeners through industry creatives, shedding light on the diversity gaps that exist in our society and finding ways of closing them. In this episode, Stephanie Ghoston draws connections between how changes in our personal lives can influence the workplace, leading to cultural shifts in our local environment.


LinkedIn


Unconscious Bias: A concise yet thorough beginner course into the topic of implicit bias that explains its relevance and impact within the workplace and the world of business in general.

Adding Value through Diversity: Amongst many other interesting topics around diversity at work, this course explains the consequences unconscious biases can have, even within work environments that attempt to be diverse.

Confronting Bias: Thriving Across Our Differences: For a more conversational experience that incorporates a range of intriguing anecdotal evidence we suggest this source – particularly the video ‘how to counter unconscious bias’.


Academic and Non-Fiction Literature


On Intersectionality: Essential Writings by Kimberlé Crenshaw


A ground-breaking collection of essays, written by the very woman who coined the term intersectionality as a political framework. As one of the founders of the field of critical race theory, Crenshaw asserts that intersectionality today must be rethought. Drawing on court cases and figures like Sojourner Truth, Crenshaw highlights the interlocking nature of gender and race and its separation. This collection is perfect for becoming a true feminist ally.


In the Wake: On Blackness and Being by Christina Sharpe


A personal and semi-autobiographical analysis into the effects of slavery on contemporary life. Based on her concept of ‘the orthography of the wake’ and zooming in on the symbolic elements of the wake (the weather, the ship and the hold), Sharpe mixes poetry and prose to form a deeply moving novel. She analyses her own family’s experiences and her own teaching history, and she also uses contemporary injustices to highlight biases and misjustices white people must educate themselves about.


Why I’m No Longer Talking to White People About Race by Reni Eddo-Lodge


Though questioning the Black people in your life might appear to be an effective tactic to avoid being unintentionally prejudiced, this strategy is itself a form of microaggression. This book expertly explores the disorientating, othering and out-of-body experience of having to constantly explain the value of one’s very existence that many Black people are forced to go through. Perfect for aspiring allies.


White Fragility: Why It’s So Hard for White People to Talk About Racism by Robin DiAngelo


A part of the success and continued survival of the BLM movement is dependent upon white allyship as it falls onto those with power to create room at the top for others. Though controversially titled, this book effectively explores the reluctance and feigned ignorance of many within the dominant cultural hegemony (white people) to examine their role in the fight for racial equality.



Harvard and other universities in the US have joined their resources to create Project Implicit, a non-profit organisation to study and educate the general public on the effects of unconscious bias within societal institutions. Their Race Task has garnered a lot of press coverage recently and works as a wonderful resource for gauging one’s own unconscious biases.

One way of acknowledging unconscious biases is by actively making better-informed decisions around overall consumer behaviour, not just book-buying habits. Being intentional, beyond word-of-mouth and Amazon recommendations, will help end perpetrating similar content. Seeking stories that challenge us is a reading approach that promotes growth and learning. One way of doing this could be by reaching out to publishing professionals. Some book recommendations include: Lost Gods by Micah Yongo and Beneath the Rising by Premee Mohamed. Each of us accepting our own accountability can have a positive ripple effect on our media awareness.

For more resources, take a look at Don’t Talk about Implicit Bias Without Talking about Structural Racism, Implicit Bias -- how it affects us and how we push through | Melanie Funchess | TEDxFlourCity and No. You Cannot Touch My Hair! | Mena Fombo | TEDxBristol.


Keep your eyes peeled for

Issue 10 where we will be discussing all things marketing!