Teacher’s Guide: The Burning (Young Readers Edition): Black Wall Street and the Tulsa Race Massacre of 1921
One of the worst acts of racist violence in American history took place in 1921, when a White mob numbering in the thousands decimated the thriving Black community of Greenwood in Tulsa, Oklahoma.
The Burning recreates Greenwood at the height of its prosperity, explores the currents of hatred, racism, and mistrust between its Black residents and Tulsa’s White population, narrates events leading up to and including Greenwood’s devastation, and documents the subsequent silence that surrounded this tragedy. Delving into history that’s long been pushed aside, this is the true story of Black Wall Street and the Tulsa Race Massacre, with updates that connect the historical significance of the massacre to the ongoing struggle for racial justice in America.
School Library Journal interviewed Hilary Beard and Tim Madigan about how the young readers edition was developed, their different experiences as a Black woman and a white man, and how the book highlights resilience over horror. Read their interview here.