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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.

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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. (

Nov 10, 2022

In Twenty Dollars and Change, Lusane offers a searing examination of what the fight to replace Andrew Jackson with Harriet Tubman on the twenty-dollar bill reveals about race, class, and social justice in America today. Lusane gives voice to the millions of Americans who mobilized for the “Tubman twenty,” becoming a part of the long legacy of people of color and women challenging symbols of patriarchy, racism, and white supremacy. He also discusses the movement that emerged in the aftermath of George Floyd’s murder, who was arrested for allegedly passing a counterfeit $20 bill.


Lusane argues that while Andrew Jackson’s image represents a flawed vision of democracy that tolerates white supremacy, Harriet Tubman’s represents the demand for gender equity, racial justice, and the struggle of people working for social inclusion and economic fairness. With insight and urgency, Lusane explains how national symbols in support of social justice serve to unify and strengthen us as a people. 


Clarence Lusane is a Professor and former Chairman of Howard University’s Department of Political Science. For more than forty years, he has written about and been active in national and international human rights, anti-racism politics, Diaspora engagements, U.S. foreign policy, democracy building, and social justice issues such as education, criminal justice, and drug policy. He has served as a political consultant to the Congressional Black Caucus Foundation and many elected officials. He is also a former Commissioner on the DC Commission on African American Affairs. His most recent book, The Black History of the White House, received praise from The Washington PostNPR’s Morning EditionUSA Today and The Boston Globe, among others. Dr. Lusane was also recently interviewed on The Scholars