Promo graphic of Antiracism Book Circle for Spring 2022

Poetry Collections: Natalie Diaz , Joy Harjo & Destiny Birdsong, for women

Poetry Collections: Natalie Diaz , Joy Harjo & Destiny Birdsong, for women


The Resource Center for Nonviolence (RCNV) presents a 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 renewed call for gender and 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, 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 containers.

Schedule and Logistics

RCNV circles meet weekly on Zoom over the course of 8-10 weeks every season. Weekly meetings last 2 hours. This book circle will meet on Thursdays from 5-7 pm PT; it will run for 8 weeks starting on 04/14/2022, ending on 06/02/2022.

This program is offered to our community on donation basis, funds go to support the work of RCNV, to cover the costs of administration and co-facilitators training. Any amount is highly appreciated, traditionally we suggest $25 per person, or more for those wishing to grant space to others, but 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 will reach out with more details. We look forward to having this journey together.

About The Three Offered Books

  1. In Natalie Diaz’s new lyrical landscape, the bodies of indigenous, Latinx, black, and brown women are simultaneously the body politic and the body ecstatic. In claiming this autonomy of desire, language is pushed to its dark edges, the astonishing dune fields and forests where pleasure and love are both grief and joy, violence and sensuality.
  2. In Joy Harjo’s poems, the joys and struggles of the everyday are played against the grinding politics of being human. Beginning in a hotel room in the dark of a distant city, we travel through history and follow the memory of the Trail of Tears from the bend in the Tallapoosa River to a place near the Arkansas River. Stomp dance songs, blues, and jazz ballads echo throughout. Lost ancestors are recalled. Resilient songs are born, even as they grieve the loss of their country.
  3. Destiny Birdsong in this collection negotiates their body—asking what it’s worth to themselves, to romantic partners, to a society that caters to white people. The speakers negotiate with their memory, examining how trauma functions in their daily lives. The speakers negotiate with men, with their mother’s old sayings, with their health, with love or what was mistaken as love.

Who can join

This book circle is open to women of all races, and for those who are ready to go deep into vulnerable places as expressed by the authors. This circle is mostly suitable for those who have done work of similar nature and who are longing to self express courageously through the above themes in the poetry. Silvia, NormaAlicia and Muna differ in styles but will bring everyone HOME in the end. You are not required to purchase the books because each week we will share the required materials with our audience via email for reflection.

Your Circle Facilitators

NormaAlicia Pino (she/her) is an indigenous Mexican writer and performance artist. She is an educational specialist in the Office for Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion at UCSC. NormaAlicia is a co-founder of Intersectionality Laboratory (i-Lab) in Santa Cruz. i-Lab is an interactive learning space which centers indigenous wisdom and knowledge as the basis for scholarship and healing self, community, and the planet (@thei=Labucsc).

Muna’s heritage is Palestinian/Arab/Jordanian, with lineage from the Middle East, North Africa and Eastern Europe. She became a US citizen five years ago and her home now is in the Santa Cruz mountains; on unceded territory of the Awaswas people. She came to America in 2008 to pursue a masters degree in mental health counseling, since then her personal and spiritual journeys never cease to evolve, she is committed to social justice and peace work. She works for the RCNV coordinating the antiracism book circles. More @

Silvia Morales is the Executive Director for the RCNV. She is trained as a public interest lawyer and has a passion for civil rights. In her life-long role as advocate for the Latinx community, she has remained dedicated to providing spaces for racial healing and understanding. She loves the Central Coast of California because it continues to provide her and her family a life filled with beauty and purpose.

RCNV Note on Affinity & Mixed Race Groups

The Resource Center for Nonviolence (RCNV) mission is to highlight social injustice and to offer education on alternative/nonviolent action into healing racism and systemic violence. RCNV, through the book circles program, offers a safe container to go deep into the self and community transformative work.

At the RCNV, we also acknowledge the need to dismantle white supremacy through creating space for affinity groups in our book circles to go deeper. People of color need the space to show up freely in our community to express their emotions away from the conditioned white spaces. At the same time, white people are in need to do their work of dismantling white supremacy in their own skin by being vulnerable with those who relate to their experience. We are aware that people from all cultures have similar human emotions but humans are also different in how they experience life, given to them through the racial, religious, ethnic and cultural lens.

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). 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.

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