Unraveling Bias: How Prejudice Has Shaped Children for Generations and Why It’s Time to Break the Cycle


YA & Up

Implicit Bias




Christia Spears Brown, PhD & Foreward by Soraya Chemaly


As soon as I saw the announcement for this book, I furiously sent an email begging for an ARC. Christia Spears Brown has written one of my favorite books about gender stereotypes, Parenting Beyond Pink and Blue. So when I saw that she was coming out with another book that encompassed not only gender biases, but also brings in race and LGBTQ+ oppression, my brain just about exploded with excitement.

Unraveling Bias takes a look at implicit bias and prejudice from several different angles. Part 1 looks at legislation, Part 2 looks at racial bias and how we began talking about it as a culture, and then Part 3 is information about what the reader can do to help this lengthy and much-needed process.

Brown is a social scientist that studies bias, it’s what her research is centered around. The book is a combination of her own research in addition to past research that has shaped the academic landscape centered around bias.

A huge tip that Brown gives to readers is to support inclusive media. Representation, or the lack thereof, is one of the ways we can clearly track how our society is doing as a whole. Not everyone can follow legislation and read pages of legal jargon, but everyone consumes media. Having a critical eye on the modalities that we consume and show our children can either uphold or dismantle these prejudices that we are taught.

This book was kindly sent by BenBella Books, but all opinions are my own.

Christia Spears Brown

Christia Spears Brown is an author, researcher, and professor of Developmental Psychology. She is also the Director of Center for Equality and Social Justice at the University of Kentucky. She earned her Ph.D. in Developmental Psychology at The University of Texas at Austin. Brown began her academic career on the faculty of University of California at Los Angeles.

Her research focuses on how children develop gender and ethnic stereotypes, how children understand gender and ethnic discrimination, and how discrimination and stereotypes affect children and teens’ lives. As part of her research on  discrimination, she also examines the perpetration and acceptance of sexual harassment and how children understand politics, public policies, and societal inequalities.

In addition to peer-reviewed journal articles and book chapters, she has written several books, including one for an academic audience, Discrimination in Childhood and Adolescence, and one for parents, Parenting Beyond Pink and Blue, and co-edited the Wiley Handbook of Group Processes in Children and Adolescents. Her newest book is Unraveling Bias: How Prejudice Has Shaped Children for Generations and How to Break the Cycle

Soraya Chemaly

Soraya Chemaly an award-winning author and activist. She writes and speaks frequently on topics related to gender norms, inclusivity, social justice, free speech, sexualized violence, and technology. The former Executive Director of The Representation Project and Director and co-founder of the Women’s Media Center Speech Project, she has long been committed to expanding women’s civic and political participation.

Soraya is also the author of Rage Becomes Her: The Power of Women’s Anger, which was recognized as a Best Book of 2018 by the Washington Post, Fast Company, Psychology Today, and NPR and has been translated into multiple languages. She is a contributor to several anthologies, most recently Free Speech in the Digital Age and Believe Me: How Trusting Women Can Change The World.  Soraya is also a co-producer of a WMC PSA highlighting the effects of online harassment on women in politics in America.  Her work is featured widely in media, documentaries, books, and academic research. As an activist, Ms. Chemaly spearheaded successful campaigns challenging corporations to address online hate and harassment, restrictive content moderation and censorship, and institutional biases that affect free speech.

Soraya currently serves on the national board of the Women’s Media Center and is a former board member of Emerge America, Women, Action and The Media, and the DC Volunteer Lawyers Project. She has also served on the advisory councils of Trajectory Women, Women in Journalism, the Center for Democracy and Technology, VIDA, Secular Woman, FORCE: Upsetting Rape Culture, No Bully, and Common Sense Media DC. 

In 2013, Soraya won the Association for Education in Journalism and Mass Communication’s (AEJMC)’s Award for Feminist Advocacy and the Secular Woman Activism Award. In 2014, she was named one of Elle Magazine’s 25 Inspiring Women to Follow in social media, and, in 2016, the recipient of the Women’s Institute for Freedom of the Press’s Women and Media Award. In 2017, she was the co-recipient of the Newhouse Mirror Award for Best Single Feature of 2016 for an in-depth investigative report on free speech and social media, and a Wikipedia Distinguished Service Award for exemplary contributions to the advancement of public knowledge and educational content. In 2019, she was awarded the Feminist Press’ Feminist Power Award.

Prior to 2010, Ms. Chemaly spent more than fifteen years as a market development executive and consultant in the media and data technology industries. After several years in market development at the Gannett Corporation, she moved into the data tech sector at Claritas, ending her tenure there as SVP of Marketing Strategy.

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