AFAM 162 - Lecture 25 - Who Speaks for the Race? (continued)

Lecture 25 - Who Speaks for the Race? (continued)


In this final lecture, Professor Holloway offers a survey of some of the main themes and ideas of the course, including citizenship, uplift and respectability, political radicalism, cultural politics, and racial symbolism. The final two questions he grapples with are 1) what does it mean to be "post-racial" and 2) how is race used in our society? In order to propose answers to these questions, Professor Holloway examines Barack Obama's election; his 2008 inauguration; and his speech, "A More Perfect Union," given during the campaign. He also provides some examples of the ways raced is used in the American landscape to distract attention from class and gender; to sell products, including Uncle Ben's rice and Aunt Jemima's pancakes; to suggest a progressive commitment to equality; to draw in tourist money; and to heighten emotions, as illustrated by some of the ways that New Orleans' residents were depicted during Hurricane Katrina. In the end, Professor Holloway argues that race is used in ways that are, whether intentionally or by accident, at best simplistic and at worst destructive, often because we are unwilling to talk or think about these issues in complicated ways. He then leaves the students with one final question: how will you use race?



Marable, Let Nobody Turn Us Around, pp. 621-640

Ford, The Race Card

McBride, “Can the Queen Speak? Racial Essentialism, Sexuality, and the Problem of Authority”

Ransby “Fear of a Black Feminist Planet”

Course Media





Low Bandwidth Video

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mov [500MB]