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Givens Foundation | Black Market Reads

Black Market Reads is a menu for Black literary consumption and all of its spin-offs. Featuring Black artists who love to read and write and engage in arts and culture.

To listen to episodes and find great additional content about our authors and their work, visit our website (

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PRODUCER: The Givens Foundation for African American Literature

SEASON TWO - FOUR: Hosted by Lissa Jones

SEASON ONE: BMR was originated by Tana Hargest on behalf of The Givens Foundation, HOSTED BY Erin Sharkey and Junauda Petrus of Free Black Dirt, and other guest hosts as introduced, MUSIC: Sarah White - Through People [M¥K Remix]

Black Market Reads is made possible through the generous support of our individual donors, Target Foundation, and the voters of Minnesota, through a Minnesota State Arts Board Operating Support grant thanks to a legislative appropriation from the arts and cultural heritage fund.

For more information about the Givens Foundation, visit their website. (

Mar 25, 2024

In this inaugural episode of Black Market Reads: On Health, Lissa Jones introduces her series co-host Bukata Hayes, Vice President and Chief Equity Officer at Blue Cross Blue Shield of Minnesota. Together they welcome their guest Linda Villarosa, a Pulitzer Prize Finalist and contributor to the NYT 1619 Project.

There’s an alarming saying in medical circles that Black people in the US “live sicker and die quicker.” Linda Villarosa, explores this phenomenon in her book UNDER THE SKIN: The Hidden Toll of Racism on Health in America. Villarosa finds that erroneous beliefs about Black bodies, dating from the time of enslavement, continue to influence medical practices today. Coping with the daily stress of racism ages Black people prematurely. And racist beliefs held by doctors and other medical professionals often keep Black people from getting the care they need.

Black Market Reads is produced by the Givens Foundation for African-American Literature in partnership with iDream.tvFunding for this series is provided by Blue Cross and Blue Shield of Minnesota, as part of Blue Cross’ long-term commitment to improving the health of Minnesota communities and ensuring that all people have opportunities to live the healthiest lives possible.

Series artwork created by Ta-coumba T. Aiken