The Thought Project - Episode 43 - Interview with Eric Lott

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Eric LottLast week it was revealed that Ralph Northam, the Democratic governor of the state of Virginia had been featured in his 1984 medical school yearbook with photos of one man in black face and another in a Klu Klux Klan white hood and robes outfit.  In the wake of this revelation Northam initially apologized calling the photos “shocking,” but by the next day during a bizarre press conference with his wife at his side, he denied that he was in the photos. All major figures in the Democratic party, including the party chair Tom Perez have called on Northam to resign. He has thus far refused to step down.  To help us unpack these layers of racism as depicted in blackface and its continued reappearances, now in politics as well, is Distinguished Professor Eric Lott, a cultural historian and author of Black Mirror: The Cultural Contradictions of American Racism (Harvard University Press, 2017) and Love and Theft: Blackface Minstrelsy and the American Working Class, (Oxford University Press, 1993 and 2013), which won many awards.  Some of the language used to discuss this subject matter is sensitive and can be offensive.

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Submitted on: FEB 6, 2019

Category: The Thought Project