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Book Bans, Mycelium, and Our Responsibility to Each Other

This morning, my husband texted me this story from CNN.

It's one in an inundation of news stories and real experiences of books being challenged, banned, and removed from schools across the land that is settler called the United States.

Book bans movements have taken place ever since books were first published. There's always someone who doesn't want information to be freely accessible. And it's not just any information. It's information that is at the heart of our identities: race, gender, sexual identity, history of the Land, etc.

What's bothering me most right now is that the book banning is indicative of the state of our communities -- crawling with a movement that demands erasure, assimilation, and white supremacy.

How do we counter these moves? My daughter is reading an encyclopedia of fungus. She keeps reading me little facts. The latest has been about mycelium. She tells me that the mycelium under the ground meet up. And where they meet, they embrace. And where they embrace, new growth happens.

My conversation about mushrooms and mycelium with my daughter reminded me of some of my learning around emergent strategy (adrienne maree brown). She, too, talks about the system of mycelium and what it can teach us about how to make movement for social change. Mycelium represents "Interconnectedness. Remediation. Detoxification" (45). It is our connections with each other and into the world, our ability to meet each other and truly listen to each other's stories that leads us to be able to change and detoxify.

In my little world, this means taking a step to support families, teaches, and anyone else who's moved to take action. I hope you'll check out our learning materials on book bans and will purchase our Book Ban Action Box if you can. If you do, send us your experiences, photos, etc. Tell us what you get inspired to grow as a result of this book seed planting.

We need each other. We need each other's stories. #ireadbannedbooks


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