heather reisman

Indigo CEO Heather Reisman is getting dragged for not doing her homework

Canada's largest bookstore chain has been the talk of the internet over the past few days after the company made a social media post that seems to paint its CEO in a bit of an unfavourable light.

Heather Reisman, the head of Indigo Books & Music, was due to host a high-profile Instagram Live interview on Thursday, which she had to cancel as she hadn't exactly finished properly reading the author's book yet.

The kicker is that the interview was with Layla F. Saad, who wrote Me and White Supremacy — which has shot to the top of bestseller lists everywhere over the past few months following the death of George Floyd and ensuing worldwide protests against anti-Black racism in policing — and Reisman is a privileged white woman.

According to Instagram and Facebook posts from Indigo on Wednesday, though Reisman had technically read the book in time for the event, she "had not yet engaged in the journaling process" involved.

A key part of the text, which existed first as a workbook only, is the 28 days worth of journaling prompts it includes to encourage readers to engage with their own inherent biases and privilege.

Essentially, in a time when we should all be trying to do the work to dismantle racist systems and tackle other social injustices, Reisman quite literally did not do the work involved in reading a book on white supremacy.

People are definitely appreciating the candour of whoever runs Indigo's social media, though some worry whoever that is may not have a job soon after what feels like a subtle (but deserved) jab at their CEO.

What's even worse is that this isn't the first time the chain has had to cancel the very same event for the very same reason.

Earlier this summer, it deferred the interview from its first and original date, writing "We are taking the book's central message to heart, that it is not just something you read, it something you do, and as a company we are embarking on the work," in an Instagram story.

Being a cis-het white woman who is worth a few billion dollars, perhaps Reisman just has a lot more work to do on the subject than some of us and really needs the extra time to do it.

Lead photo by

@GoToVan


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