Tuesday, June 1, 2021

THE HIDDEN RULES OF RACE by Andrea Flynn, Susan R. Holmberg, Dorian T. Warren, & Felicia J. Wong

 Andrea Flynn, Susan R. Holmberg, Dorian T. Warren, & Felicia J. Wong, The Hidden Rules of Race: Barriers to an Inclusive Economy (NY: NY: Cambridge University Press, 2017).

Available in hardcover, Kindle and Nook.



Recommended by Rebecca Kessler

This well researched book argues that to understand economic outcomes, we have to look at the interaction between economic rules, belief systems and political choices. It starts out with a short (but super helpful) history lesson starting around the time of Bacon's Rebellion (1675-1676) up to present day. 

The economic analysis presented emphasizes group interactions (both between groups and within groups) and also argues for the importance of relative (as opposed to absolute) levels of consumption, wealth, and income and their relation to personal satisfaction. Six chapters are dedicated to describing racial rules (of wealth, income, education, criminal justice, health, and democratic participation). The final chapter includes guiding principles for rewriting the racial rules and also includes examples of rules that need to be written or rewritten with some specific strategies towards that goal. 

This book has taken me to a new level of understanding about racial justice issues that our country is facing today. Now, when I read or listen to related news stories, I find myself better able to make connections to our country's history and its racial rules. This short review does not do this book justice. Please check it out for yourself! 

Note: The first three authors listed are Fellows at the Roosevelt Institute and the final author listed is the President and CEO of the Roosevelt Institute.