As you are well aware, the United States has had some incredibly horrific events happen to our Black community over the past few weeks that have rightfully brought this discussion to the forefront again. And while we, Kelsey and Zoë, are doing our best to educate ourselves, support our local Black community members, and donate to organizations that support Black Lives Matter and equal justice, we have been also discussing what we can do with Tea & Strumpets to support this as well.
We believe that any time you have a platform, no matter how big or small, you should use that platform to amplify the causes that are important to you, which is why we have strived to include diverse books in our book recommendation section and to have more diverse books on the podcast.
But we haven't done that well enough. We have not yet reviewed a book written by a Black author. We have not yet reviewed a book that features a Black main character. We have not yet interviewed a Black author.
We review in a genre that overwhelmingly tells the stories of white, straight, Christian, cis-gendered, rich people. We love Regency and Victorian romance, but we want to see the genre grow to become a more inclusive and interesting space. We want to read more diverse stories from different voices. There are so many more stories to tell.
So, we at Tea & Strumpets commit to the following at a minimum:
Cover multiple books of the genre during the remainder of this year that are written by Black authors, and endeavor to do more every year subsequently.
Invite Black authors on for interviews.
Cover multiple books of the genre that feature a Black main character.
Reach out to the community to find Own Voices authors who are interested in writing books featuring diverse main characters in the Georgian/Regency/Victorian periods and offer them our support in whatever facet can be provided.
Invite readers of color to come on and join us for reviews of books to get more perspectives into the room.
We will continue to update you on our actions to support the Black romance community and the Black community at large. We support them and their absolute right to equality, respect, and dignity.
Zoë & Kelsey