Race: Creating a National Conversation
The O.J. Simpson trial and the Million Man March once again revealed not only the centrality of race, but its polarizing power. Public discourse is marked by recrimination and finger-pointing. Demagogic politicians and talk show hosts advance their agendas by playing what is called the “race card.” Crucial issues of equality and fairness are buried in media stereotypes. If race and the persistence of racism cannot be rationally discussed, the alternatives are ominous.
Recorded at the University of Colorado at Boulder.
Lani Guinier was an award-winning scholar and expert on race, gender, representation and voting rights law. She served as legal counsel for the NAACP Legal Defense Fund. In 1993 she was nominated by President Clinton to be Assistant Attorney General. After an orchestrated right-wing campaign to label her as a “quota queen,” Clinton withdrew the nomination. She was the author of The Tyranny of the Meritocracy. Lani Guinier was a tenured professor at Harvard Law School, the first Black woman to hold such a position. She died in 2022.