Racial issues are part of the American story. Although much progress has been made toward ending racism, history cannot be undone. In the spirit of remembering that struggle there is a small local homage to the journey and the people who traveled it.
Splayed out in a corner of the Fletcher library is a modest arrangement of hand-chosen books that highlight and chronicle the events from early slave-trade of 250 years ago to the civil rights movement of the mid 20th Century. Not officially affiliated with the library, the Racial Justice Book Club is an association of Westford residents from the community.
The Club established the display in early December to let people know of the existence and importance of these literary works. Amanda Zaman, RJBC Founder and Chief Organizer, said that the exhibit is an extension of the club’s mission to introduce people to the thematic canon of African American writers and recollections. “We intend to expand our reading and discussions into other cultures,” she said.
The RJBC is no different from traditional book clubs; members read the selected works then discuss the contents and messages. “It is one thing to read and grapple with a topic in a vacuum,” she said of the group. “”But it is entirely another to be part of a group. To establish trust and comfort enough to speak openly is refreshing. Almost therapeutic.”
The display will remain at J.V. Fletcher Library, 50 Main St. for the foreseeable future, “until someone else asks for that space.” For more information or to join the RJBC, email Amanda at firstname.lastname@example.org.