Tag: Race

When the Klan Returns

For nearly a century, the 1920s Ku Klux Klan has seemed an exception that proves a rule. Far-right movements typically eschew electoral politics, as earlier and later waves of the Klan also did. But ...

Trans Like Us

When Caitlyn Jenner came out as transgender in 2015, many commentators praised her bravery for claiming a truth that had been denied her at birth. At roughly the same moment, the story of Rachel Dolezal, the 37-year-old …

Feeling Like the Internet

What has the advent of the internet meant for the novel? Apart, that is, from its having opened a gaping time-sucking sinkhole at the center of culture? The sweet drip-feed of sentiment and savagery ...

A Tapestry of Black Lives

James Baldwin’s legacy looms powerfully in this current moment. This may be all the more true for black writers. Rachel Kaadzi Ghansah, one of the contributors to Jesmyn Ward’s timely new anthology ...

Who Segregated America?

Recently long-listed for the National Book Award for nonfiction, Richard Rothstein’s The Color of Law is an accessible and powerful account of how metropolitan America became racially segregated ...

The Big Picture: Social Solidarity

Like mom and apple pie, football brings Americans together. It enables spectators to participate in collective life loudly and (sometimes) proudly, despite competing team loyalties. Because such ...

The Big Picture: Unholy Alliances

Andrew Jackson had good reason to believe that his first presidential election, of 1824, had been rigged. He had won the popular vote but not an Electoral College majority. Jackson was hated by elite ...

Immigration’s Daughters

The voices of the six Chinese American girls who narrate the short stories in Jenny Zhang’s Sour Heart collectively convey the emotional texture—and often the burden—of striving. What does it mean to believe that life can and will improve? …

Trump Syllabus 2.0

On June 19, 2016, the Chronicle of Higher Education ran a web version of a mock college syllabus that sought to explore the deep historical and political roots of Donald Trump’s political success ...

When Stuart Hall Was White

I do not recall when I discovered that Stuart Hall was black. Growing up in Britain as neoliberalism first began to take shape under the rule of Margaret …

Slavery Was No Opera

“This was no love story,” Nikky Finney cautions us in “Pluck.” The poem from her 1995 collection, Rice, is a repudiation of Hollywood’s insidious fantasies about sex and American slavery. Prompted by …

James Baldwin’s Istanbul

“Baby, I’m broke, I’m sick. I need your help,” James Baldwin said to a friend when he landed in Europe, looking for a place to rest. This time, his European city of choice wasn’t Paris. It was Istanbul. …

Empathy Is Not Enough

Almost 30 years ago, education researcher and children’s literature scholar Rudine Sims Bishop introduced an analogy that has been widely embraced by the librarians, teachers, artists, and scholars ...