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tv   After Words  CSPAN  December 27, 2013 9:55pm-10:56pm EST

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is ride off but not have alienated as many bosses as i did it might have risen to greater heights but all of the other hand i would have denied my own being, my sense of critical analysis analysis, in my frustration with things not run as well as they could have been. first of all, i would blind up being frustrated as opposed to happily retired prettify had to guide my own personality and probably would not have gotten as far as i did. as a look back on my time at chrysler with iacocca i wish i was not so critical the
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way he was doing things the could have elevated the two chairmen or ceo but you never know. it is what it is i am happy as i look back with mostly great satisfaction. >> host: most i think would say you haven't had a very successful career. are you really retired? what is next? >> certainly i will not be an executive and a major corporation but i am a contributor to force, d.c. contributor:i write a column for a magazine and a board member for a variety of companies and two consulting and i am now involved man
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with a partner in producing premium men's watches and one of which is right here starting a small automotive venture. i have plenty to keep me busy. >> host: why i don't call that retired. you have a lot of wisdom that somebody just starting a new one to follow in your footsteps of what was a your party words of wisdom be male or female with leadership? >> first of all, be passionate. if you are passionate about fashion or the furniture business go with that. if it's about the hospitality go into that last night i heard a lecture of the sports caster
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probably the most famous sportscaster in the united states in said from the time he could walk he would hold a spoon pretending to be a sports caster what he wanted his whole life. so that is the essential ingredient otherwise you will end up to use the of nine to five slave kicking off the months to retirement and will not be successful. follow the area of your greatest passions and hard work always try to exceed requirements. never be satisfied with the status quo and always give extra and always maintain professional integrity don't try to pull funny stuff four-star rivers to ingratiate yourself by
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shading the truth. just behave with absolute integrity which i seek is of lesson that america needs today needs to hear. >> host: you are great and have taught me a lot and you are one that i love you say it as it is. i don't always agree but you are one of those who are willing to save what they think. >> guest: john is one of my hero's. >> host: i love you both. >> host: i look forward to seeing you soon and people learn from your insights. bob lutz. fatefully there are fewer idiots a.m. there were icons [laughter] >> guest: thank you.
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good night. . . that's the best interview i've had on the book tour.
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i just got it from charles. and loved the interview on things that matter. his new collection of essays. some of which are auto biographical. that makes my day. i like radio. three hours is an abundance of time. i can do so many different -- things. you're watching c-span2 with politics and public affairs. weekdays featuring live coverage of the u.s. senate. on weeknights watch key public policy events. and every weekend the latest non-fiction authors and books on booktv. you can see past programs and get your schedules on our website. you can join in the conversation on social media sites. up next on booktv. "after words" with political activist, radio host joe madison. talkingtalking with craig wilder on "ebony and ivy."
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in the book, the >> host: i guess the first question is, how did you start -- down the road? we were laughing when you said ten years ago when you started you had hair. >> guest: not a lot. but i had hair. [laughter] >> host: what started you down the road to actually put "ebony and ivy" together. >> guest: it's a long story i can make short. i had just been moving from one job to another one teaching position. i just finished a book project. i started out on whey thought was going to be a simple book, a
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simple article. i was going explain how black abolitionists got their education. give the fact they were excluded by race from american colleges and universities. i was going tell the story of where they went. some went to europe. some went to new england and studied privately. some studied privately in the atlantic and became ministers, teachers, and doctors. but in fact, actually, one of the things i got more interested in, i started that project was why they were excluded from the colleges and universities. that these, colleges, in fact had a long history write black people. on campus. and enslaved people but not as students. but they had a long history with native americans. and that's a very -- at black students were excluded. native american students were on campus for 200 years. >> host: doing what? as students? >> guest: students for almost
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200 years. >> host: how were they able to be on campuses. you write about that. >> guest: that's the beginning of the book. if you think about it, you know, the first attempt to build a college for native american students is about 210 years before the first attempt build a black college. the first native american graduate from a college is 200 years. the first may -- native minister 150. it sounds like native americans are privileged inspect fact, part of the story telling the book is precisely the role of the university in conquest. it's precisely the role of the university in colonialism. that explains the early presence of native students on campus and precisely that role that explains how universities turn to the slave trade to fund their enterprise. >> host: now. when you say the conquest. from what i was reading is that the part of the conquest was
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this thing of -- these are "savages." these are people that are infour your -- enfour your and we have to educate them or train them or somehow make them unsavage like. i'm speaking in reference to the native american. >> the belief is that the goal the obligation was to bring the gospel to bring the bible to untutored people. and to civilize them in that way. a lot of projects went hand- in-hand with conquest, and territorial expansion. one of the things that was surprising to me, as i started the book, was the quite -- that they played in that early colonial period. i'm a -- american college. the american colleges and universities helped take me as a kid with a single mother raising
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three kids all by herself in brooklyn, new york and turn me to a college professor with tenure. >> host: you and your sister. who is an m.d. >> guest: yeah. my sister is a pediatrician in d.c. i've always thought of higher education and colleges and universities. the benevolent institutions. the institutions that do good things if we can get access to them. what the research began to expose was the other role that universities can play. universities can be, in my mind, weapons of social just u, but what shocked me they could be weapons of social destruction. >> host: in what way? >> guest: they can play a huge nart undermining the integrity of native american nations and civilizations. one of the things i write about in the first chapter is the desire to christianize native people in the americas.
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several attempt to build colleges -- which was all the early colonial colleges have as a primary mission. the education of native people. are going to be tour or ited in i english, and only have, in fact, the remnant of native culture and native language. >> host: in the book "ebony and ivy" do you talk about the type of cause m that might have been created as it relates to intergenerational conflict? >> guest: sure. i touch on it in the first chapters of the book and try show the ways ways in which the early colleges actually had a multitrystic role. part of the goal -- port of their purpose was to help achieve the strategic aim
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of the colonies. and this is the white -- we awrve deploy education and deploy schools in the colonial world to soften the -- of native people to european. >> host: let's fast forward to then the whole issue of slavery. one thing that captures people's attention and the critics have talked about this how the slavery funded these college campuses. it funded and built these campuses. who were the individuals that built the harvard, yale, brown, i think many of may remember the headline from brown university that started with a study there. how much of that had an impact on what was in "ebony and i i
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have." i was four or five years to the project when brown university released its report, and the former president of brown, courageously, actually, and within the face of great citizens and great criticism from her -- from her own constituents, you know, brown -- she articulated the purpose of higher education. which is the pursuit of truth. and we pursued truth in all of these other arenas. we also have to put some truth in our own history as institutions. and the brown report mattered a lot to me. i was four or five years to the project, and, you know, this was a massive undertaking. and it was about 2006 when i realized how big it was. how much time it was going take. how many years it was going take. and it was a good part of me that didn't want to go forward. >> host: why? >> guest: it just seemed
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enormous. and it wasn't clear that, you know, 5 or 10 years later i would have a coherent book. at that time the book wasn't clear in my head yet. what i was clear about the amount of material to go through. the number of places they had would to go to put -- it took me from, you know, quebec city in dan to the carolinas along the east coast to scotland and england, to holland. > host: why. start with the farthest away. >> guest: okay. >> host: why scotland? i could understand england. why scott land? bring people up in to understanding why would a book on race, slavery, and the
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troubling american university. why scott land? >> guest: it's in the race book. it's the section about the rise of race and racial -- scot sland a tremendous influence on the rise of the colonial north america. and ultimately on the united states scottish immigrants are the largest group of free people. the largest group of free people to cross the atlantic. the pennsylvania back country. appalachia. >> yeah. and with this enormous migration. also comes a migration of idea. the scottish university in helping to modernize the colonial american colleges. both scottish faculty who come
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to teach in the americas, scottish ministers who come govern over some of the schools, and then, i mean, just loads of american students colonial students who those scotland to study science and study medicine and come back to north america to do things like establish the first medical school. the principle players the slave trade? >> guest: they're not the usual suspects you look at. there's a trade that comes out of scotland. but we have to remember small towns like that. we have to remember just how massive the slave trade is. and part behalf the book is about, in many ways, is actually the enormity of the africa trade
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in the 17th en18th search. how they shaped the atlantic world and instituted the economy that connected europe to the americas to africa to south america. and created, in fact, a transoceanic trade. how to which the united states be born. >> host: in term of building the campuses, when did -- who were these founders of these universities? were they slave traders? >> guest: no. >> host: they weren't slave traders? >> guest: well, they are largely ministers. okay. from the various denominations. and so, you know, there's the
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dutch reform which is now rutgers and there's the -- college of new jersey which is princeton. these are actually denomination schools. they are schools that emerge out of the church communion. and then once they are established and as you establish them, you need money to do it. and a lot of money. the would be england. why would they want to fund? >> guest: that's one of the problems. i jokingly described it to myself as i was working on the chapters, you know, why would the english want to give the pure contains money to establish a school of new england in massachusetts when in fact, getting rid of the pure contain school was a great goal. [laughter] there's not necessarily warm friendly relationship between
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them. this is where we get back to native american history and native americans become king. because the american columnist were fearful at raising money, using the e advantagelation of native people as the goal. and so sending off missionary to england to britain under -- and raising money under the claim that evangelizing native people in the american. the first at harvard is the indian college. that's where the money is coming from. and, you know, accelerates the
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crumbling of theytive society on the frontier and on the borders. so they are -- quote, unquote, slave owners. then eventually after independence. -- >> guest: even before. they do turn -- >> guest: yeah. >> host: they turn pretty quickly. these are religious schools to begin with. very quickly they have to figure out the sources of funding. one source is going to be europe, england in particular, and raising money often under the claim one is evangelizing native american. the other source of money they have available to them is the rising population of colonial elites. people who actually have money within the colony. and in particular, both in england and in the americas, that group is made up of slave traders who are operating out of
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places like bar barbados and jamie -- jamaica. many of them actually live are absentee landlord that live in england and manage it from afar. often sending children -- the male children, the oldest might go military or the oldest might go to own to land. the mid child and the next youngest go off to the colony. >> i point out they station their children -- the key in the operation to the family networks. who studied for a long time. but also send to the caribbean. and establish --
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they send another son to england. and from the various points, they can manage their operations more e fresh single female. move more money and goods efficiency and give them a chance to make the strategic changes in the plans are for these long extended shipping voyages. through increasingly wealthy men and families. >> right. >> guest: with interest in the americas. and begin to advertise themselves actually to this class of family. the classes.
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in fact one of the chapters is named after it. in which he says, you know, the very name of the indian. it come imply great love. then he goes on to promise that if they send their boys to princeton, they'll be taken care of. and guided and supervised. and turned in to substantial and responsible young men. but if you send them off to england, the british universities are too large and too decentralized to give them that kind of attention. and what he's really selling is the potential of the american colonies to serve themselves and the potential of these education nam institutions to cater to the needs of the colonial elite. the colonialial elite is largely a product of the slave trade. the slave trading merchants and in large plantation own inert caribbean and americas. >> when we read the -- of course the reviews as most
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people probably will before. without getting to the meat and we're talking with professor craig steven wilder. the book, the subtitle "race, slavery, and the troubled history of american universities" the impression is that slaves built these universities not just the money from the slave trade finance but actually the presence of slaves on it? the university of harvard and yale, pribs -- princeton, and brown. or every capacity? enslaved people in the hotels are often called dormitory of the colonial period that clean up after the students. they prepare meals. they collect wood. they gather wood for fires. they are in charge of lightening the cakdz --
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candling and putting them out in the evening. many of the presidents owned enslaved people. within a couple of years the purchase at least two people. one for the main house and one for the campus house. >> now, were these individuals under the ownership of the university incorporated or under the ownership of various professors? >> guest: right. i mean, i think the problem is that this is a kind of technical issue. that is a little bit harder to deceiver in the colonial period. for instance, there was a one of the ways i was exploring this. i looked at a lot of county
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records in which the colleges where the colleges are. when you look at the colonial county records, often you'll have the name of the president or the name of the professor and then listed with their taxable property. will be an enslaved person or two or three. >> host: did students bring slaves? >> guest: yes. >> host: they brought them to cool them? >> guest: yes. if you think about this, if you look at the name of the president and three lines over, part of his taxable property is an enslaved person bhap you'll often have in the case of princeton or harvard, you'll actually have the president's name ditto the college. who ons the person? in the common knowledge of the town, of the local area. the president and the college are kind of inseparateble anyway. and so i didn't spend lot of time actually trying to deceiver that. >> host: well --
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college town. >> guest: right. and that's -- [inaudible conversations] and more college towns than now. >> guest: if you can believe that. even more dominant. these are -- >> host: the came bridge would be a college town. >> guest: yeah. nassau the tallest building in british america when it's built. these colleges dominate the environment. one of the things that i also found fascinating about "ebony and ivy" as you talk about the slaves who build campuses and wait order the faculty and students was the curriculum. this white supreme single that was perpetrated. so you a teach ier.
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what we now consider liberal institutions. teaching white supreme single female -- i'm not trying to sound as if i'm surprised, but if you -- if you said that now about yale or harvard, you know, people would think, well, my goodness, when did this start? how did they get started? so you sort of explain that because of the people who started these universities. >> guest: the origin -- s in the source of their funding and the continued -- remember, at the american revolution approaches, and the tension between the colonies and england increase, the capacity of the american -- to raise money in england. >> host: right. >> guest: the indian college, hazard. is largely, you know, taken down at the end of the 17th century
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and beginning of the 18th century. >> host: some believe they can't financially -- >> guest: they are still using it. and to be perfectly honest. i tread in the book is as the native american military threat in new england decline, the interest in evangelizing native american declines. within the book and saints related to the question that you asked me earlier about did students bring slaves to campus. yes. they do. at william and mary they pay fees to house the slaves on campus. at klum -- columbia and king's college. george washington comes to new york city with his stepson,
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jackie, and jackie is a slave. and the president of columbia, king's college at the time, myles cooper gives him a suite of rooms that jackie has painted and suited to obtain. and joe is actually in the smaller bedroom of the two where he can , you know, so yes. people -- the students arrived with slaves to campus. the faculty often had slaves. but one of the thing i wanted to get across in the book, particularly in the chapter about enslaved people on campus. enslaved people were inseparateble part of the college experience in the colonial world. >> host: which meant that -- they were exposed to higher education. >> guest: right. yeah. they were. in fact, there are examples of this betsy who was enslaved to one of the presidents of princeton studied in the library of the president's house and
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becomes an extraordinary gifted biblical scholar. she's being consulted by biblical scholars. >> host: and she's self-taught. >> guest: she's largely self-taught. the president gave her instructions. he instructed her in the president's house and she continued to study on her own as she got older. >> host: let me share something i highlighted and have you expound. it comes from the chapter "cot tom comes through to harvard." and charles -- [inaudible] was -- first of all, who was he? and the reason i bring this us, the future cotton planter. they were talking i believe henry watson, jr. also wrote that the ancient gips had the curly hair and other feature was of the african race
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in that contemporary egyptians were only lighter in -- european and professor did not leave it to his students to infer that black africans so often advanced in fair of slavery. expand on that, because it seems to be this -- apparently what you're saying here there was a conflict, i take it, who were the egyptian. how was racism taught. who were africans, who weren't africans. even to the point, i bring it up, the argument takes place today. >> guest: yeah. it sounds modern. >> host: it does! >> guest: every table and street side book seller.
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was engaged in the debate with some proud -- >> host: right. >> guest: for at least a decade. it sounds very modern. it is modern. let's think about who it is. henry watson, jr. is a young man from east windsor, crittle. who goes to washington college in harvard, which is now trinity college. and finishes education at harvard. and he graduates in the early is the 30s with the ba from harvard. as he sets out on the world. and introt conduction to the book is actually largely uses henry watson junior jr.'s story. he those alabama and he's looking to become a tutor on a plantation to make some money that he can save and then go to law school. the reason i find him fascinating like a lot of young college men in the 1830s, the south represented an extraordinary field of opportunity for him. he was precisely the -- who was the wealth of the plantation.
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but it was also the educational neglect of the south that created opportunities for well-educate northerners who wanted to head south to begin their career. and like a lot of them, watson plan god for a year, make money, go back home, become an attorney. >> host: he would be educating the children -- >> guest: of the plantation -- >> host: he would be working on a plantation as a tutor to the son's and daughters. there was an unequal destruction of time. he's looking for this sort of -- i give examples of all the -- lots of young men who make this choice after graduating in the same time period. a lot of whom become famous like benjamin one of the most important science professor in the history of yale. and the professor who really begins yale science program. actually faces the same choice when he finishes college. waitedson heads south and he's
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disappointed. he doesn't get the job. so he heads back home and his father has been supporting him and becoming increasingly self-conscious about getting money from his father, when the endeavour has proven fruitless. he heads back to connecticut, he actually does study law and questions south again. he heads right back to alabama. and establishes himself as a planter. and over the next decade, he becomes quite wealthy and successful as a planter. on the eve of the civil war, he owns more than 100 people. he owns thousand of -- acres of land and a leading voice in defense of slave own perhaps the young man sat if the class of an abolitionist, charles, at harvard. in the early 1830s. he took it. he heard him make an argument, not just an abolitionist argument but an antiracist argument. he was trying to argue that the
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mountain of myth that were being used to defend american slavery were nothing more than that. they were just men. if one looked at history. >> host: approached this in a scholarly way. >> guest: yeah. he chose history. he chose examples from it. he largely used history and so he went back to the ancient egyptian and made the argument we were often making on the street corner in the 1990s. and so it does sound very modern. it sounds very contemporary. but it's an interesting character. this is a young man who had brought -- to liberalize germany and who has chairnged out of europe. arrested for his activism. chased out of europe. he comes to the united states, he has the, you know, sort of intha experience of running to
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-- he's brought back. during the american revolutionary. and on the 50th anniversary of the decoration of independence, congress invites him back to the americas. to celebrate. he runs in to him in philadelphia, and calls his -- not calls but contacts his biographer at harvard. i think it's according george in religion. and he arrange for an appointment for him. ..
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glasgow at some point, we do read in history and you do write about it, at some point former slaves, african-americans are allowed to attend the harvard's andy ailes. at what point did that change? >> guest: actually it happens and change -- stages at different points. you can go avoid back actually to the revolutionary era. the first black people to come to campus as students in what becomes united states is probably right after the
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revolution. and what happens is the number of residents at these no longer colonial early american schools began accepting black students for private study. >> host: for what reason? >> guest: the reasons are very different. some are affected by the rhetoric of the revolution itself. the call for liberty and justice actually resonates with them and they began to question slavery themselves. there is an active antislavery debate happening on american campuses in the aftermath of the american revolution. this discussion is happening in the aftermath of the revolution. you know, college faculty and college students actually would debate the question of slavery quite a bit. >> host: in such universities that we would recognize today, we have talked about
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northeastern new jersey. let's talk about the southern universities. >> guest: the university of georgia and the university of north carolina. the university of north carolina has been abolitionist speaker at it one of its campuses in the early 19th century. and then the trustees actually published the speech. it's actually circulated around the united states. >> host: are these individuals who live in slaveowning states again in "ebony and ivy" you write about it. are they abolitionist or is this a free exchange of intellectual debate and discussion? >> guest: is a free exchange of an selection of debate and discussion and often driven by abolitionist or at least by people who are uncomfortable with the continuation of slavery as is. the new york society which is made up largely of slaveholders and was established at the end of the revolution begins to fund
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an award at columbia for the best beach against slavery that actually exposes the immorality of slavery and the slave. this is actually given at graduation. and it's based on something that happened in england already. they borrow a medal that is actually a model of incentivizing this discussion i offering a medal. so these are debates that are happening across the campuses and in the aftermath of the american revolution it's because some of the presidents are affected by the rhetoric of the revolution itself and they have now been exposed to the british antislavery campaign and the extraordinary political force that represents on both sides of the atlantic and some of them have been swayed by those arguments particularly on the question of the slave. there is another group who actually begins to see black americans as potentially a tool
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for christianizing africa and so they began to take on black students with the hope of preparing them as missionaries as they will put it to send back to africa as christian missionaries are you with the logic that much like native americans. >> host: it goes back to the earlier part of this discussion. >> guest: if you remember 200 years earlier. how do you christianize a native nation? >> host: you christianize those -- the children and they become a second generation. i follow you. >> guest: in fact be evangelization of natives with people of their own is one minister puts if people of their own color and tone. you take native children and
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turn them into missionaries and return them as late teenagers early 20s and they will do the work of evangelizing. >> host: as you are talking and i'm just curious, does this create once again i will use the term a chasm between older blacks and younger educated blacks who are being educated for other purposes? do you understand where i'm trying to go with this? and you know we often have this argument even today, well you are just a tool. that's really what i'm getting at. you discussed this in "ebony and ivy." >> guest: were these educated african-americans tools, did they know they were being tools? >> guest: i ask or try to be native americans and african-americans who received this education and the way that
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i talk about them. i try to be cautious because in fact actually for instance with the native americans, during king philip's war in 1675 when king philip's was the campaign resistance led i who the english call king philip and it's the combination of native nations against the puritans. it almost conquers new england. it comes very close at this point. without external help and good luck christian new england might have fallen. serving with king philip or actually two or three native people who have been educated at harvard. and that's also true two centuries later as we begin to take young black men and young black women and prepare them for
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these various roles. very often actually those educations become radicalizing experiences, not necessarily the civilizing ones that the benefactors have matched. the capacity of people of color to use their education to pursue their own entities and the -- to pursue you know the project of liberating their people. it shouldn't be ignored or swept under the rug. we actually can pay attention to that so i'm careful in the book not to make the subject -- point that we could use education strategically is one thing. >> host: that they were successful. >> guest: native americans among african-americans where we find loads of examples of people who took that education and turned them to radical
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emancipatory purposes within their own communities. >> host: what in your research,n this, 10 years. when you first started with this concept of turning this into "ebony and ivy" and again craig steven wilder a fascinating read on this. i'm just curious if this will be required reading for your students at m.i.t.? >> guest: i never have asked question to buy any book that i have written. >> host: you are very unique. >> guest: i could tell them what's in it. >> host: was there anything as a historian, was there anything that surprised you as you are researching and writing "ebony and ivy"? just to this day if i were a student in your class and i
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would ask that question professor wilder what really caught your attention? what really stuck with you and surprised you? >> guest: honestly the thing that i wrestled with the most as i was writing the book, and this is rooted in my experiences as a black man growing up in the united states in the arab that i did, was how to balance these historical narratives of different groups of people. once you take up the topic of politics and slavery it seems to me that it would be a less than honest discussion if i didn't actually explain the relationship between these colleges and native american nations. that story doesn't make sense. for instance in the colonial period really you can't tell the story of how these colleges got
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involved in the slave. and how their trustees and that becoming slave traders and have they created these cozy relationships to planters in the south and in the west indies. the slave traders in the northeast and europe, where they cultivated this people so aggressively for so long. the story doesn't make sense unless you actually look west and you think about the ambitions of the colonial project. >> host: when you say wes -- >> guest: west of the east coast. and you actually think about the native american nations aligned along the boundary between the colonies and indian country. so i had to bring, i felt to tell this story well i actually had to become a student of native americanism.
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>> host: when we think of native americans and again the common historical thought that we are often taught is that native americans did not make good slaves. but you do talk about them being enslaved. you do talk about them so is that a myth wax is that a myth and a fallacy? >> guest: we have all sorts of myths about native people and actually if you think about native slavery, there is an enormous. in native people in the colonial america's and the carolinas as one historian has pointed out. the south carolina and north carolina created a two slave trades. it's a trait that enslaved africans being brought into the carolinas in a. in enslaved native people being sold out of the carolinas.
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into the caribbean and also to canada. new france from the 17th century on in eastern canada have been a healthy and receptive market for native people enslaved in wars throughout the americas. native people are actually enslaved and sold into the caribbean. these are largely, we have a lot of mythmaking about slavery but when it comes to the thing that surprised me the most. >> host: i was going to say that's a surprise me in the book and i'm so glad we had a chance to discuss that because it is the common thought often expressed in casual historical conversation and the reason blacks and africans were brought here is because native americans simply didn't make good slaves. they ran away and disappeared in to the western wilderness. >> guest: the other part of it is the enormous death rates the extraordinary mortality rates among native people due to the
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new diseases in the first 100 years of contact but in fact none of that stopped us from enslaving people. that's the lesson you take away. not a single one of those factors stop this from capturing native people into bondage and other parts of the americas. trading enslaved people, there are native american slaves on college campuses owned by the faculty and officers of colleges and i list some of them. >> host: the reason i wanted to make sure we emphasize that is because people get into "ebony and ivy" and they might start saying when are we getting into the african slave part of it but you spend a great deal of time as you say processing the relationship of africans and slavery with what happened prior to africans being in essence
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brought in and enslaved. this is the other question as we start to wrap up. there will be those then who will read "ebony and ivy" and i also have the sense and correct me if i'm wrong professor that is almost two books in one. what i mean by that and i mentioned that earlier, it's the glossary, the footnote that i tend to turn to how people come up with the narratives that it right about. it's just amazing and you have done that on purpose so again researchers, historians can see where you got this information and then expand upon it. >> guest: michael was to take a difficult topic and make it accessible to the public. to make it readable and approachable. there is also in fact another
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public that i write for which our academics and people doing research in this field. i wanted to provide them with as accurate a map to the sources as i could to help along their projects and the work that they have been publishing has certainly helped me in this project. >> host: i would he remove sub i didn't ask about your own institution and my tea. where do they fit in? >> guest: actually we show up at the very end of the book. the rise of the technical and engineering colleges and universities in the decades before the civil war which is very much influenced by the expansion of the cotton culture of the united states. it is cotton textile manufacturing that produces a whole wave of new wealth that in order to get those manufactumanufactu res running unique qualified engineers and the owners of those mill towns in that investors began investing in engineering and science education at both the
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existing universities -- >> host: the southern plantation owners that have the cotton. >> guest: is financed through new york. >> host: the raw materials in the south produced by slaves, financed by new york bankers and insurers and then the industrialization. >> guest: manufactured in new england and into textiles. >> host: and then sold around the world. >> guest: you need scientists and engineers and we begin investing as one historian put it in raising whole towns along the river banks where we can actually do this large-scale manufacturing. >> host: there would also be those that may finish reading "ebony" and ivy and say or ask the question, do these
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universities, do i dare mention the word reparations? and so i don't know if that is your next book and i don't know how that discussion comes up in your classroom. that might need the thought process that some people end up with and what are your thoughts? >> guest: i'd have to go back to what we were talking about a few minutes ago. one of the things i have learned in doing this book is that history is not a race to see who is worse off. and who is the most oppressed. another reason i wanted to lend together the stories and histories of native americans with african-americans was to actually get to the truth, to the facts in the details of what happened and to explain them as accurately and carefully as i
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could. i see my job as a historian back to the lloyd's difficult topics but to choose difficult topics and my task is to take readers through that to help them and to guide them through difficult moments in the history. there are consequences for these universities. >> host: such as? >> guest: brownness already began to initiate and implement the recommendations from the brown committee in 2006 and weighs which brown can actually reconcile its reality. they established a center established on campus areas there was a decision to make a more aggressive investment in financial aid and scholarship money and to just be proactive to recommit to a diverse campus
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and a campus that recognize that education can be a tool of social justice. at william and mary there has been movement in that same direction and an exhibit on campus. there was a faculty statement about the history of the institution with slavery and i think that is in some ways the right motion. i don't have a prescription for all the universities that i write about in this book. i do think that universities have to engage their own histories and i recognize there are consequences to that. >> host: when you say universities have to engage and again the book is ebony and ivy, engage them and deal with their own consequence is what i think i heard you say. that should be left up to the
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universities to decide? >> guest: actually i think it's about the students and about the alumni. it's a conversation that needs to happen on campus but it's also about the surrounding area. >> host: the surrounding area meaning? >> guest: the cities and towns in which they live. i think the solution for yale is different than the solution for middle america. >> host: or for cambridge. >> guest: part of grappling with the troubled history of the american university is recognizing the troubled history of american university student and with this book. one of the things they did and that's book was i stopped the book at the highpoint of scientific racism because i wanted to get to the point where they could see the modern university without necessarily
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spending another 10 years telling the story. >> host: i love the term you being a professor at m.i.t. scientific racism. just lee, what do you say in the book? what is scientific racism? >> guest: there are few chapters in the book where i write about the emergence of race in science, within science. one of the things that i argue is that not only does science, one of the key ways for establishing the legitimacy of racial and the racial defense of slavery. >> host: in essence would i be incorrect in saying white supremacy? >> guest: yeah. i would argue it's the racial defense of slavery. it's the idea that african people are inherently inferior and created or prepared by nature for a certain level of humanity. and for certain level of treatment.


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