4 Reasons Everyone Should Read “The Underground Railroad” by Colson Whitehead
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4 Reasons Everyone Should Read “The Underground Railroad” by Colson Whitehead

August 17, 2019

– Hey Naturally Curly World. I’m Cristina and
February’s Naturally Curly book club pick of the month was Colson Whitehead’s Underground Railroad. I’ve been talking to
the editors about books that we should read during this month. It’s also on Oprah’s book club list, it’s on Obama’s summer reading list, and it won the National Book Award. This book is a historical fiction and in it we follow Cora. Who’s a young girl, who takes a literal underground railroad across
the country to escape slavery. (soft music) Reason number one, for context. We all took that one day of black history in elementary school, but it’s really important that we continue to educate ourselves throughout our lives about this tumultuous time in our history. There’s a lot of racial injustice and political conflict happening today. And it’s important that
we understand this time because it’s what shaped our history. Number two, because
reading a book is better than watching a movie. When you read a history text
book you get all the facts, but you miss out on all the color. And when you watch a movie
you get all of the color, but you miss out on accuracy. So when you read historical fiction, I think you get the best of both worlds. It’s really the best way
to get a realistic idea of what it’s like to live
in someone else’s shoes. Number three, to take part
in Black History Month in a meaningful way. I’m sure you’ve seen a lot
of posts in your social feeds about Black History Month, but there is a great
Blavity article that we just shared on Naturally Curly by Doug Spencer. The one way that he and
his friends are challenging the status quo of Black History Month is to read a book by a
black author this month. Obviously The Underground
Railroad is a great choice, but if you want to see a
full list of other books by black authors that he
recommended, you can click here. Number four, because it’s uncomfortable. Cora’s story and the
stories of the people that she meets along the way are devastating. And a lot of the time reading
this book is uncomfortable. There are graphic depictions
of violence, rape, treating people as if they’re livestock. Even though it’s fiction,
nothing about it is whimsical. There’s a great quote in the
L.A. Times about this book that says, “What is so
strikingly clear in the pages of The Underground Railroad
is that we actually have no idea just how uncomfortable
we need to get before we even begin to understand
how far we have to go.” So that’s it. Those are all my reasons. But you don’t have to take my word for it, you can get the book and read it yourself. And then come tell us what you thought. We’re having a Facebook
Live where we’re gonna be talking about the book on February 28th at 12:00
Central Standard Time, 1 p.m. Eastern. And I can’t wait to hear what you think. If you wanna join our book club, sign up. We will send you newsletters
about the book of the month and when we’re gonna
be talking about them. And if you wanna see
more videos like this, then share, like, subscribe. And we’ll see you next time, bye.


  • Reply Ossouko 3 February 23, 2017 at 1:05 pm

    Great book , for a non AA gave me some understanding of the AA history past and present.

  • Reply makeda rad April 26, 2017 at 2:31 am

    Underground's railroad was sooooo good!

  • Reply Mohammed Shujauddin Safi August 28, 2017 at 5:11 am

    You're right.The book is devastating.I had nightmares of Cora,Caesar and Lovey running…

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