Henry Louis Gates: "A Real Leader Speaks to Fear and Allays Those Fears"

"People are afraid, and when people are afraid, when their pie is shrinking, they look for somebody to hate. They look for somebody to blame. And a real leader speaks to anxiety and to fear and allays those fears, assuages anxiety."

Henry Louis Gates Jr. (b. 1950) is the Alphonse Fletcher University professor and director of the Hutchins Center for African and African American Research at Harvard University. He is the author of 17 books and creator of 14 documentary films, as well as a contributor to The New YorkerThe New York Times, and Time. Gates is editor-in-chief of TheRoot.com, a daily online magazine, while overseeing the Oxford African American Studies Center, the first comprehensive scholarly online resource in the field. Gates is the recipient of 53 honorary degrees as well as a MacArthur Fellowship in 1981.


"People are afraid, and when people are afraid... they look for somebody to hate. They look for somebody to blame. And a real leader speaks to anxiety and to fear and allays those fears, assuages anxiety."

Source: PBS

Photo credit: Jon Irons [CC BY 2.0 (http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/2.0)], via Wikimedia Commons

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