to The Beulah Show
. "After Beulah
was cancelled, the three networks and independent television producers, fearful of being accused of perpetuating racial stereotypes, stopped casting Blacks in their shows almost entirely for the next fifteen years."
posted by unliteral
on Jun 14, 2010 -
In the black.
Maggie Anderson, and her family spent a year trying to patronize only black-owned businesses.
Featured in the local papers
, you can read about the project and their own views on their website
posted by Carillon
on Apr 30, 2010 -
People afflicted with Williams syndroms
are known for their "elfin" appearance, the ease with which they approach and socialize with stranger, and their near-normal language skills. Recent research
on children with the rare neurodevelopmental disorder suggests they share another trait: They do not form racial stereotypes. Via.
posted by Bukvoed
on Apr 13, 2010 -
Beyond the Pale:
In a wide-reaching book review and with nods to James Baldwin's 1984 essay On Being White ... and Other Lies
, Kelefa Sanneh makes a modern argument that white identity is founded on a series of negations: "to be white in America is to be not nonwhite, which is why it was possible, in 1961, for a white woman from Kansas living in Hawaii to give birth to a black baby." [more inside]
posted by l33tpolicywonk
on Apr 6, 2010 -
"I couldn't let these Klansmen get away with murder..." Investigative reporter Jerry Mitchell has started a blog
focusing on cold case murders
of civil rights workers. In this Moth Podcast
, Mitchell discusses some of his investigations, the death threats he received, and the stunning redemption and forgiveness he witnessed. For his work Mitchell
was recently awarded
a MacArthur "Genius
" grant. [more inside]
posted by bguest
on Feb 15, 2010 -
Jo Guldi writes a fascinating entry
about social engineering and geography in the 1970's. "The geographers located answers in American zones of isolation and hopelessness. Bill Bunge organized his fellow professors into the Detroit Geographical Expedition, leading frequent trips to document the slums of Detroit and later Toronto. Their findings were equally provocative. In 1968, the Society published a map entitled “Where Commuters Run Over Black Children on the Pointes-Downtown Track.
” Life and death, they argued, were not merely the commodities available to any hard-working American, but hung upon the thread of a special kind of privilege, the privilege of safe territory." Guldi
is a historian at the Harvard Society of Fellows. [more inside]
posted by cashman
on Feb 12, 2010 -
Why are Europeans white? "White," of course, is a a social designation. The question really is, "Why are northern Europeans depigmented?" [...] Most people know that it has something to do with sunlight, UV, latitude, and vitamin D. [...] But this explanation fails for Europe. Northern Europeans are lighter than everyone to the south (Mediterraneans), to the east (Mongols and east-Asians), to the west (Native Americans across the Atlantic), and to the North (Inuit, Sammi, Chukchi, Aleut). Clearly, there once was a factor at work in Europe other than dim sunlight. [more inside]
posted by symbollocks
on Dec 17, 2009 -
on Ledasha, Legends, and Race
| Part Three
] "Why does it matter? We tell funny stories all the time without believing them. (Does anybody really think that a priest, a rabbi and a chicken walked into a bar?) I believe it matters in the case of urban legend names because they're not merely humor...and they're not random. They exist in a complex social setting, and they serve a subtle and consequential purpose. They are proxies for talking about race."
posted by ocherdraco
on Nov 1, 2009 -
"Imagine a large corporation with a workforce whose African American percentage far lagged its industry peers, sans any apparent concern, and without a credible action plan to remediate it. Would such a corporation be viewed as a progressive firm and employer? The answer is obvious. Yet the same situation in major cities
yields a different answer."
posted by revgeorge
on Oct 26, 2009 -
"We’ve processed the messaging habits of almost a million people and are about to basically prove that, despite what you might’ve heard from the Obama campaign and organic cereal commercials, racism is alive and well." The people who run the dating site OkCupid
continue to analyze the aggregate data of their users, shedding light on preferences and behavior. The most recent OkTrends
post takes a look at their compiled racial data: Your Race Affects Whether People Write You Back
. (previously 1 2
posted by naju
on Oct 7, 2009 -
In an area where racial divisions are very stark, the relationships between the "haves" and the "have nots" are very illuminating. Leasse William is a cook at the Sigma Nu
fraternity house on the campus of the University of Mississippi. She makes ten dollars an hour
. For nine months of pay this equals out at about $15,000/year. This places her well within the over 20%
of the population in Mississippi that lives below the poverty line. This mini documentary by Ben Guest
about Leasse shines a light on the perspectives of the various actors involved in this drama of racial tensions and class disparity.
posted by anansi
on Sep 26, 2009 -
This past Thursday the Canadian government granted refugee status
to Brandon Huntley, a South African who has been living illegally in Canada since 2005. Huntley claimed that if he were to be repatriated back to South Africa he would be persecuted due to the fact that he is white. The South African government is not amused
. [more inside]
posted by PenDevil
on Aug 31, 2009 -
In addition to poor construction, the vehicles most likely to crash have 1) poorly secured bicycle wheels 2) a high center of gravity and 3) high occupancy. Add in alcohol, a steep down grade and spectators throwing water balloons, and you get the perfect storm for destruction.
This past weekend, the 13th Annual Adult Soapbox Derby (all slyt)
was held on Mt. Tabor, an extinct volcano in Portland, Oregon. Cars built for speed can reach 40 mph, and cars built for art can be downright outrageous. [more inside]
posted by Lutoslawski
on Aug 24, 2009 -
...The narrative of the blues got hijacked by rock ’n’ roll, which rode a wave of youth consumers to global domination. Back behind the split, there was something else: a deeper, riper source. Many people who have written about this body of music have noticed it. Robert Palmer called it Deep Blues. We’re talking about strains within strains, sure, but listen to something like Ishman Bracey’s ''Woman Woman Blues,'' his tattered yet somehow impeccable falsetto when he sings, ''She got coal-black curly hair.'' Songs like that were not made for dancing. Not even for singing along. They were made for listening. For grown-ups. They were chamber compositions. Listen to Blind Willie Johnson’s "Dark Was the Night, Cold Was the Ground.'' It has no words. It’s hummed by a blind preacher incapable of playing an impure note on the guitar. We have to go against our training here and suspend anthropological thinking; it doesn’t serve at these strata. The noble ambition not to be the kind of people who unwittingly fetishize and exoticize black or poor-white folk poverty has allowed us to remain the kind of people who don’t stop to wonder whether the serious treatment of certain folk forms as essentially high- or higher-art forms might have originated with the folk themselves.
From Unknown Bards: The blues becomes apparent to itself
by one John Jeremiah Sullivan. I came across it while browsing Heavy Rotation: Twenty Writers On The Albums That Changed Their Lives
. For Sullivan, that album was American Primitive, Vol. II: Pre-War Revenants (1897 - 1939)
, which is my favorite CD of the year. Which came out in 2005 while I just got around to buying it this year. Foolish me. It is a piece of art in itself in every respect--all CDs should have such production values. [more inside]
posted by y2karl
on Aug 6, 2009 -
Today, on the last day of this year's term, the Supreme Court of the United States issued its opinion
, the latest in the Court's line of decisions on Title VII
and the role of race in employment decisions. The famous case centers on white firefighters' claims of race discrimination
following the town of New Haven's decision to scuttle a promotion exam
after white test takers performed disproportionately better than black firefighters. [more inside]
posted by Law Talkin' Guy
on Jun 29, 2009 -
Seeing race: the Other-Race Effect.
Why do so many people think people of other races look alike? Babies as young as three months old "tend to recognize faces from their own race better than those from other races," but "babies raised with frequent exposure to people of other races don’t develop this early bias." The Other-Race Effect, aka the Cross-Race Effect
, "carries practical implications for cases of mistaken eyewitness identification." A follow-up study with Chinese babies
confirmed the effect, and notes that it can change: "Korean adults who were adopted by French families during their childhood (aged 3–9 years) demonstrated the same discrimination deficit for Korean faces shown by the native French population." Yes, you have to be carefully taught
posted by shetterly
on Jun 20, 2009 -