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“Race isn’t about black people, necessarily,” says Eddie Glaude Jr. “It’s about the way whiteness works to disfigure and distort our democracy, and the ideals that animate our democracy.”

Glaude is the chair of Princeton University’s department of African American studies, the president of the American Academy of Religion, and the author of the powerful book Democracy in Black. And this is a conversation about some of the hardest issues in American life: the way racism is intertwined with America’s political system, the worldviews we force ourselves to adopt to justify racial inequality, and the way white fear sets boundaries on black politics.

These aren’t easy topics to discuss, but they’re necessary ones. As Glaude says, “We have to have a politics that can interrogate it honestly, and do it in such a way that is mature, that opens up space for us to imagine ourselves otherwise.”

Book recommendations:

The Quest for Certainty: A Study of the Relation of Knowledge and Action by John Dewey

James Baldwin: Collected Essays by James Baldwin

No name in the street by James Baldwin

More Beautiful and More Terrible by Imani Perry

 

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