Recent Additions to the SECF Lending Library

SECF’s Lending Library gives our members the ability to borrow e-books and audiobooks on a variety of topics relevant to Southern philanthropy. Like any library, we’re constantly updating our offerings with new titles that reflect emerging trends and topics in the news. We’ve highlighted some of our most recent additions below!

If you’re not already using it, you can learn more about the Lending Library here to get started or browse our full collection of titles.  

Have a book or author you’d like to borrow that isn’t in our collection? Suggest a title by contacting Stephen Sherman via email at or by phone at (404) 524-0911.

Caste: The Origins of Our Discontents
By Isabel Wilkerson
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Beyond race, class, or other factors, there is a powerful caste system that influences people's lives and behavior and the nation's fate. Linking the caste systems of America, India, and Nazi Germany, Wilkerson, the opening keynote from last year’s Annual Meeting, explores eight pillars that underlie caste systems across civilizations, including divine will, bloodlines, stigma, and more. Using riveting stories about people – including Martin Luther King, Jr., baseball's Satchel Paige, a single father and his toddler son, Wilkerson herself, and many others – she shows the ways that the insidious undertow of caste is experienced every day. She documents how the Nazis studied the racial systems in America to plan their out-cast of the Jews; she discusses why the cruel logic of caste requires that there be a bottom rung for those in the middle to measure themselves against; she writes about the surprising health costs of caste, in depression and life expectancy, and the effects of this hierarchy on our culture and politics. Finally, she points forward to ways America can move beyond the artificial and destructive separations of human divisions, toward hope in our common humanity.


Hattiesburg: An American City in Black and White
By William Sturkey
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If you really want to understand Jim Crow – what it was and how African Americans rose up to defeat it – you should start by visiting Mobile Street in Hattiesburg, Mississippi, the heart of the historic black downtown. There you can see remnants of the shops and churches where, amid the violence and humiliation of segregation, men and women gathered to build a remarkable community. William Sturkey introduces us to both old-timers and newcomers who arrived in search of economic opportunities promised by the railroads, sawmills, and factories of the New South. And he takes us across town into the homes of white Hattiesburgers to show how their lives were shaped by the changing fortunes of the Jim Crow South.


The Political Determinants of Health
By Daniel E. Dawes; Foreword by David R. Williams
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Reduced life expectancy, worsening health outcomes, health inequity, and declining health care options – these are now realities for most Americans. However, in a country of more than 325 million people, addressing everyone's issues is challenging. How can we effect beneficial change for everyone so we all can thrive? What is the great equalizer?

In this book, Daniel E. Dawes argues that political determinants of health create the social drivers – including poor environmental conditions, inadequate transportation, unsafe neighborhoods, and lack of healthy food options – that affect all other dynamics of health. By understanding these determinants, their origins, and their impact on the equitable distribution of opportunities and resources, we will be better equipped to develop and implement actionable solutions to close the health gap.

This book features a foreword by 2021 Annual Meeting opening keynote speaker David R. Williams.


The Liberating Promise of Philanthropy: Stories of Grant-Makers in the South
By Martin Lehfeldt & Jamil Zainaldin
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Very little has been written about the way in which the grantmaking foundations have shaped the modern economy and culture of the South. Now Martin Lehfeldt, former SECF president, and Dr. Jamil Zainaldin, president emeritus of the Georgia Humanities Council, fill that gap in our national understanding with this comprehensive yet accessible history of philanthropic organizations' work in the region.

The story they weave begins with the thinking of our country's founders and the role they envisioned for philanthropy in the new republic, unspools its narrative thread through the Civil War, Reconstruction, and two world wars, and end with a thorough examination of modern philanthropy in the Southern states. The book appropriately concludes by chronicling the emergence of SECF, the geographically largest regional association of grantmakers in the country.


A Sin by Any Other Name: Reckoning with Racism and the Heritage of the South
By Robert W. Lee; Foreword by Bernice A. King
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The Reverend Robert W. Lee was a little-known pastor at a small church in North Carolina until the Charlottesville protests, when he went public with his denunciation of white supremacy in a captivating speech at the MTV Video Music Awards. Support poured in from around the country, but so did threats of violence from people who opposed the Reverend's message.

In this riveting memoir, he narrates what it was like growing up as a Lee in the South, an experience that was colored by the world of the white Christian majority. He describes the widespread nostalgia for the Lost Cause and his gradual awakening to the unspoken assumptions of white supremacy which had, almost without him knowing it, distorted his values and even his Christian faith. In particular, Lee examines how many white Christians continue to be complicit in a culture of racism and injustice, and how after leaving his pulpit, he was welcomed into a growing movement of activists all across the South who are charting a new course for the region.


Connecting with Philanthropy Southeast:
The Philanthropy Southeast staff works remotely – the best way to reach us is by email or by calling (404) 524-0911.

Monday-Thursday from 9:00am–6:00pm (ET)

On Fridays, staff work on a flexible schedule. Members can reach our team via email or by calling (404) 524-0911 between 9:00am and 6:00pm (ET). We will respond to all urgent and time-sensitive matters promptly.

Mailing address:
100 Peachtree Street NW, Suite 2080
Atlanta, GA 30303

Mission: Philanthropy Southeast strengthens Southern philanthropy, welcoming our members to listen, learn and collaborate on ideas and actions to help build an equitable, prosperous South.