Book Circle: My Grandmother’s Hands by Resmaa Menakem–For People of African Descent

Date(s) - Sep 16, 2021 - Sep 20, 2021
6:00 pm - 8:00 pm

Virtual Event Link
Register for the Book Circle Here!


My Grandmother’s Hands Book Circle by Resmaa Menakem–For People of African Descent

The Resource Center for Nonviolence (RCNV) presents this series of antiracism book circles as an act of radical education and collaboration. Our hope is to provide a unique opportunity to process the impact of the pandemic and respond to the renewed call for racial equity in our society. Our goal is to create a space in which participants may collectively and individually gain understanding that will result in healing, understanding, inclusion and empowerment. More importantly, they provide a way to maintain energetic human connections through virtual meeting spaces. Past circles have included participants from around the world to create transformative and educational learning spaces.

About this book

In this groundbreaking book, therapist Resmaa Menakem examines the damage caused by racism in America from the perspective of trauma and body-centered psychology.

The body is where our instincts reside and where we fight, flee, or freeze, and it endures the trauma inflicted by the ills that plague society. Menakem argues this destruction will continue until Americans learn to heal the generational anguish of white supremacy, which is deeply embedded in all our bodies. Our collective agony doesn’t just affect African Americans. White Americans suffer their own secondary trauma as well. So do blue Americans—our police.

My Grandmother’s Hands is a call to action for all of us to recognize that racism is not about the head, but about the body, and introduces an alternative view of what we can do to grow beyond our entrenched racialized divide. It paves the way for a new, body-centered understanding of white supremacy—how it is literally in our blood and our nervous system. It offers a step-by-step healing process, in addition to incisive social commentary.

Who should join?

This book circle is open to people of African descent and of the African diaspora. It is strongly recommended that you read or have read My Grandmother’s Hands book before joining; however, all learners in black-bodies are welcome. This will be a time of learning and connecting, experimenting and experiencing, and interacting and playing together. We’ll make closed captioning available, and our offering is guided by a trauma-informed lens that cherishes individual agency and collective container holding. Curtis and Monique’s styles in running book circles vary between tackling the book’s material/concepts, mindful introspective exercises, group process, and spontaneous personal artistic sharing. They include eclectic techniques in the learning, from intellectual to somatic/embodiment. Everyone who feels called to do this work is welcome.

A Note on Affinity & Mixed Race Groups

Due to the sensitive racial nature of the books offered, the RCNV’s racial equity policy offers separate affinity groups to respect the process of participants and to provide more safety and depth in the circle. Black, Indigenous, and People of Color (BIPOC), especially, may benefit from a unified healing experience within a safe container to grieve and process. Thus, book circles offered for mixed races and for affinity groups are determined depending on the nature of the chosen book and the skills of co-facilitators. Book circles are co-facilitated by facilitators of all races; and affinity groups are facilitated by facilitators who identify within that affinity group. Mixed race individuals are welcome to join affinity groups matching their self-identification. Our co-facilitators will do their best to support every participant in their process. Our book circles provide spaces to practice mutual respect, collaboration, and the creation of an inclusive community.

Your Circle Facilitators

Curtis is a musician, meditation/yoga facilitator, gardener and an RN. He looks forward to accompanying and holding space with you on this journey of deep looking healing racialized trauma.

Monique is a healer, storyteller and “guide from the side, not a sage on the stage”. Her interests lie in the uplifting of people of the African diaspora. She is a mental health practitioner and works closely with the BIPOC community. Monique is interested in ways that promote healing and wellness for Black and other bodies, learning and implementing the somatic approach to healing as Resmaa says “healing happens in the body”.

Schedule and Logistics

RCNV circles meet weekly on Zoom over the course of 8-10 weeks beginning in September 2021. Weekly meetings last 2 hours. This one will start Sep 16 and will end on Nov 18, Thursdays 6-8pm PT.

Suggested donations to support the work of The Resource Center for Nonviolence is $25 per person, or more for those wishing to grant space to others. Any donation amount is accepted and no one will be turned away for lack of funds.

After you register and as our circle start date nears, your co-facilitators, Curtis Robertson and Monique Hall, will reach out with more details. We look forward to seeing you.

Questions? Email

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