Race, Identity Politics and Poetry

C. K. Williams: Race relations in the United States today-- It’s a marvelously complicated question. There was an article in the Washington Post today about some of Obama’s workers being disturbed or more than disturbed, horrified, by some of the racial responses they had had when they’d go ask people to vote for Obama. So race in America is certainly better than it’s ever been. I don’t believe that racism of one sort or another is curable. I think it’s always something that’s there for people who need it to use it whether it’s racism, anti-Semitism, anti-Catholicism, anti-immigration. There are people for whom that will always give them some kind of sustenance and I think part of the problem is that we think we can do away with that and we can’t, and I think also that part of the problem is that we ask ourselves to cure ourselves. I don’t think-- I think that there are still elements of racism in anyone no matter how much they believe they’ve overcome it. It’s still there and to make- to try to kid yourself and think that it’s not is-- makes it harder. I think it’s important to recognize that human beings tend to think in a binomial way. We think yes or no. We think good or bad. We think black or white. And that’s in our minds. That’s the structure of our minds and we have to struggle against it but we can’t pretend that it’s not there and I think sometimes we ask people to get-- to shed that from themselves, to free them from it, and people can’t. It’s there. It’s part of our mental structure and I think it’s very crucial that people recognize that other people have that.

 

The problem of mental structures.

LinkedIn meets Tinder in this mindful networking app

Swipe right to make the connections that could change your career.

Getty Images
Sponsored
Swipe right. Match. Meet over coffee or set up a call.

No, we aren't talking about Tinder. Introducing Shapr, a free app that helps people with synergistic professional goals and skill sets easily meet and collaborate.

Keep reading Show less

Want to age gracefully? A new study says live meaningfully

Thinking your life is worthwhile is correlated with a variety of positive outcomes.

YOSHIKAZU TSUNO/AFP/Getty Images
Surprising Science
  • A new study finds that adults who feel their lives are meaningful have better health and life outcomes.
  • Adults who felt their lives were worthwhile tended to be more social and had healthier habits.
  • The findings could be used to help improve the health of older adults.
Keep reading Show less
Promotional photo of Lena Headey as Cersei Lannister on Game of Thrones
Surprising Science
  • It's commonly thought that the suppression of female sexuality is perpetuated by either men or women.
  • In a new study, researchers used economics games to observe how both genders treat sexually-available women.
  • The results suggests that both sexes punish female promiscuity, though for different reasons and different levels of intensity.
Keep reading Show less

This 1997 Jeff Bezos interview proves he saw the future coming

Jeff Bezos, the founder of Amazon.com, explains his plan for success.

Technology & Innovation
  • Jeff Bezos had a clear vision for Amazon.com from the start.
  • He was inspired by a statistic he learned while working at a hedge fund: In the '90s, web usage was growing at 2,300% a year.
  • Bezos explains why books, in particular, make for a perfect item to sell on the internet.
Keep reading Show less