tv Key Capitol Hill Hearings CSPAN December 28, 2013 1:00am-3:01am EST
best form of media that is left. what we're right now is an hour-long conversation only c-span does it anymore. you and charlie are the only guy read books the way i do. in order to talk to the authors seriously. it's tremendously revealing when an author had the book read these days. they don't get many people who have read their book and know they're talking about. with page notes. it's rewarding to them. i get a deal of satisfaction when an author says to me the highest compliment is that's the
best interview i've had on the book tour. that makes my day. i like radio three hours is an abundance of time. and i can do so many different things. more with radio talk host. you're watching c-span2 with politicses and public affairs weekdays. up next on booktv "after words" with guest host, political activist, and radio host joe madison talking with
craig wilder on "ebony and ivory." in the book, the myth history chair discusses how the campus of many elite university were not only built by slave labor but funded by from the practice of slavery. this program is about an hour. >> host: ebony and i i have, a professor wilder, i guess the first question is, how did you start down the road? we were laughing before you said ten years ago when you started you had hair. [laughter] >> guest: i had hair. not a lot but i had hair. >> host: what started you down the road to actually put "ebony and -- i had been moving from one job to another. i finished a book project and
started out on what i thought was going to be a simple book. a simple article, actually. really short. i was going explain how black ab lissist got their education give the fact they were excluded by race from american colleges and universities. i was going to tell the story where they went. some went europe with some went to new england and study privately. some study privately in the atlantic. they became doctors and teachers and minister. one of the thin get more interested in as i started the project was why they were excluded from the colleges and universities. that these college, in fact, had a long history with black people on campus as enslaved people. but not as students. but they also had a long history write native americans and at the time black student were excluded native american students were on campus for 2 00 years.
>> host: doing what? >> guest: as students for almost 200 years. >> host: how were they able to be on campuses? >> guest: that's the beginning of the book. if you think about it. the first attempt to build a college for native american students is about 210 years before the first attempt to build a black college. the first native american graduate from a college graduates almost 200 years before the first black graduate. the first native minister 150 years before the first black min steer. it sounds like native americans are privileged participate story it's precisely the role of the university in conquest. it's precisely the role of the university colonialism that explains the early presence of native student on campus. precisely that role that explains how universities turn to the slave trade to fund their enterprise. >> host: now, when you say that conquest. from what i was reading with sb
that the part of the conquest was this thing of these are "savages." these are people that are infour your and we have to educate them or train them or somehow make them unsavage-like. the goal was to bring the gospel and bible to untutored people and civilize them in that way. in fact the civilizing project went hand and hand with conquest and territory expansion and one of the thing that was surprising to me, as i started the book, was the really, quite -- [inaudible] that they played in that early colonial period. i'm a great beneficiary of the american college. the american colleges and
universities helped take me as a kid with a single mother raising three kids all by herself in brooklyn, new york and tell me in to a college professor and tenure. >> host: you and your sister. >> guest: yeah. she's a pediatricians in d.c. i've always thought of higher education and colleges and universities. i think the benevolent institutions. they actually do good things if we can get access to them.
part of the purpose was to help achieve the strategic aim. and so we all -- this is the while -- we often deploy education. to soften the -- of nay tiff people to european. >> well, to then the whole issue of slavery. because one thing that catches obviously people's attention and the critics have talked about this is how the slavery funded these college campuses. it funded and built these campus es started with study there. how much of that had an impact on what was in ebony and i'vey.
they released the report. and the former president of brown courageously, thankfully, and -- [inaudible] within the face of great criticism and great criticism from her -- from her own constituents. she articulated the purpose of higher education. which is we pursued it in all of these other arenas. we also have to pursue truth if our own history as institutions. and brown report mattered a lot to me. i was four or five years to the project and this this was a massive undertalk about taking. it was about 2006 i realized how big it was. how much time it was going to take. how many years it was going to take. and there was a good part of me that didn't want to go forward.
>> why? >> guest: it seemed enormous. it wasn't clear that five years later, ten years later i was actually being done with coherent book. what it seemed i would have more and more information. at that time the book wasn't clear in my head yet. what i'm clear about the amount of material there was to go through. the number of places i had to go to pull it together. it took me from quebec city in canada to the carolinas along the east coast to scotland and to england, to holland. >> host: why. let's start with those that are farthest away. why scotland? i can understand england. why scotland. bring people up in to understanding why would a book
on race slavery and the troubled history of american universities. why scotland? >> it's in the race book. it's in the section about the racial thought scot sland a tremendous influence on the rise of colonial north america. and ultimately on the rise of the united states as an nation. an independent nation. scottish immigrants are the largest group of free people. >> host: isn't that the term red neck came from? they wore the red bandanna? >> guest: in the 18th century in the decades before the american revolution. feeling in place like the -- west toward kentucky. forward georgia. and with this enormousmy gracious also comes a migration of ideas. these scottish universities play key role in helping to modernize
the colonial american colleges. the scottish faculty who come to teach in the americas. scottish ministers who come govern over the schools. and loads of american student, colonial students who those scotland to study science and medicine. and come back to north america to do things like establish the first medical school in the north american alcohol anies will be established by american colonial students for places like new jersey and philadelphia who head to scotland. >> host: now the scottish don't -- correct me if i'm wrong, they aren't the player in the slave trade? >> they're not the usual suspect you look at. there's a trade that comes out of scotland like the small town. and i think we have to remember the small towns. we have to remember how massive the slave trade is. part of what the book is about in many ways is actually the
enormity of the africa trade. in the 17th and 18th century. the ways in which that trade actually shaped the atlantic world. and that trade substituted the economy that connected europe to the americas to africa to south america. >> host: in term of building the campuses, who were the founders of the universities? were they slave traders? >> guest: no. they are largely ministers. >> host: okay. >> guest: from the various denominations. remember the colonial schools are denominational schools. >> host: all right. >> guest: the puritan harvard and baptist brown and columbia which is then the king's
college. there's the dutch reformed queens college which is now rutgers and the college of new jersey which is princeton. these are dominational schools. they emerge out of the church communion. then once they are established and as you establish them. you need money to do it. a lot of money will be england. they will turn to england. why would they want to fund -- i was jokingly describe it to myself. why would the english want to give the pure contains money to establish a school in new england in massachusetts when in fact actually getting rid of the pure contains was actually a great goal. [laughter] there's not necessarily warm
friendly relationship between the pure contains and them. but this is where we get back to native american history and where they become key. because the american -- were fearful at raising money, using the evangelist of native people as their goal. and so sending off missionary to england to britain under -- and raising money under the claim they were evangelizing native people. the first building at harvard is the indian college. that's where the donations are coming from. >> host: and this, then, goes back to what allowed the expansion -- >> guest: right. >> host: of the -- and therefore the expansion. >> guest: it facilities the expansion of the alcohol any. it facilities economic expansion and territorial.
slave traders that barbados boast the wealthiest man of british america. most of them are absentee landowners living in england and managing supplementation's from afar. >> host: sometimes i read the male children or the oldest will go to military or to the land to the middle child or the next year and best goes off to college. >> guest: they station the children at various points for the family network. that is how we should think of it. family networks. so these that i have studied for a long time there would
have their warehouses and stores in new york city but if they come from the caribbean to establish there then send another son to london and from those points they can manage more e efficiently moving money and goods and it gives a chance to make strategic changes with the extended shipping and also reasons why they do this but with the colonial schools turn to increasingly wealthy men with interest in the americas. so they become part of these glasses of institutions of their own making and designed to cater to their children more efficiently. i use several examples one
is john witherspoon who becomes a minister from scotland who was no from princeton university. he writes a missive to the west indies and one chapter is named after it where he says the game has come to imply a great 12th then goes on to promise if they send the boys to princeton they will be well taken care of. and guided a and supervised turned into substantial and responsible young men. but if you send them to in england they are too large to use it decentralized to give that kind of attention. so he tells them the potential of the american colonies serves itself and the educational institutions and caters to the needs of the colonial elite that is
from the slave trade merchants and large plantation owners. >> host: if you read the reviews, i get into the meat of the ebony and ivory talking to professor craig steven wilder. this subtitle race, slavery race, slavery, the troubled history of america's universities, the impression is that slaves built the universities, not just the money from the slave trade finance them but actually the president's of slaves at harvard yale princeton and brown and at what capacity? >> every capacity to labor the enslaved people cleaned the hotels or the dormitories after the
students, they prepare meals they collect and gather wood for fryer and in charge of lighting the candles to put them out in the evening, he tings of steady rooms to run errands for students and faculty at harvard dan taylor and columbia many of the college president won't enslaved people that lived on campus and within a couple years he purchased to people one for the main house said one more. >> host: were these individuals under the ownership of the university inc. order various professors? >> guest: this is a technical issue but a little harder to decipher in
colonial times. for instance one thing i looked at was i looked through the county records were the colleges are. very often you have the name of the president or the professor then listed with their property is the enslaved person or two or three. >> host: did students bring their slaves? >> guest: yes. >> host: they did? >> guest: the to the president then part of the taxable property was the enslaved person but in the case of princeton you actually have the president's name near the college. who owns the person? if there was common knowledge of the area is
inseparable anyway. i did not spend a lot of time trying to decipher that >> host: recall that college town. >> guest: in very much more back been dead now if you can believe that. >> host: cambridge would be a college town. >> it is the tallest building in british america when it is built. they dominate. >> host: one of the things that i found in your book "ebony and ivy" you talk about the slaves who built the campus's a and wasted on the faculty and students was the curriculum, the white supremacy that was perpetrated.
as a professor of history history, and this must have driven a new. i don't know how you maintain your intellectual sandy and you obviously news this before but to have it supported in the actual research of the'' other'' of what we now consider the institution teaching white supremacy. i am not surprised but if you said that now about yale or harvard people would think when did this start? but you explain that because of the people whose started universities. >> guest: it is in the origins and those sources of funding. as the american revolution the purchase if capacity to raise money for the indian
college and harvard is largely taken down at the beginning of the 18th century the research use it for other stuff in to be perfectly honest that is written in the book as the native american military threat to clients the interest in the evangelizing the native american goes with that. that doesn't mean there was not us sincere desire with christians also a strategic interest to evangelizing for the christians. absolutely. one of the things i wrestled with in the book did students bring slaves to campus? yes. at william and mary they
would house their slaves on campus. at columbia, the king's college, george washington comes to new york city with his stepson and his slave. the president of columbia king's college at the time gives him a suite of rooms that jackie is painted for joe and he is in the smaller brick term. yes. the students arrived with slaves and the faculty had slaves but with a chapter of the enslaved people on campus in fact, they were the inseparable part of the college experience in the colonial world. >> host: that means they were exposed to higher education. >> guest: yes. they were.
there are examples of this one of those that was a slave to the president of princeton actually studies in the library in becomes extraordinarily gifted biblical scholar. >> host: and she is self-taught. >> guest: largely. the president who owned her actually gave her instructions and instructors then she continued on corona she got older. >> host: let me share some think i highlighted. this comes from the chapter where charles, the first off who was he? the reason i bring this up is you right future cotton planter, henry watson, jr.
wrote the ancient egyptians had the curly hair or the features of the african race in contemporary e. egyptians are only lightering complexion to mix with europeans in the professor did not leave it to his students to infer that black africans cradled civilization. to refuse all false theories so often in favor of slavery. expand on that. it seems there was a conflict who were the egyptians, how was racism taught? who was ever conceived and to the point the argument takes place today. >> guest: this sounds very modern. just like new york city in
the 1990's. [laughter] >> cleopatra. >> guest: the streetside books other engaged in this debate for a least a decade. to it does sound very modern era ended is but he is a young man from east windsor convicted hugo's to washington in college in hartford finishes his education at harvard. he sets out in to the introduction is largely his story. he heads south to alabama is looking to become a tutor so he could save and go to law school. like a lot of young college women the self represented
in extraordinary feel the opportunity. precisely the wealth of the slave holders of the wealth of the plantations bottles of the educational neglect that created opportunities for those you want to head south. he'd just plan to go for one year to make money then come home. >> host: he would educate the children of the plantation. >> guest: the tutor to replication children there is always the unequal distribution of time. and those who also become famous like benjamin one of the most important science professors at the history of yale. and you really begins a
science program faces this choice when he finishes but watts in heads south. but he does not find it his father has been supporting him and and when this endeavor has proven true best he does study law. thank goes right back to alabama and establishes himself over the next decade he becomes quite successful as a planter and on the eve of the civil war arms more than 100 people and a leading voice of the southern slaveholders. that man sat in the class of the abolitionists.
he took the course he heard him make the argument the anti-racist argument trying to argue the mountain of this used to defend slavery was nothing more than that. event if one looked at history. >> host: to approach this in a scholarly way. >> guest: he chose examples from history you went back to ancient egyptians to make the argument that we make on the street corner in the 1990's. it does sound very modern and contemporary. this is a young band to fought to liberalize germany and was arrested for his political activism.
he has the gratuitous experience of 1825 web mafia it -- when lafayette thought on the 50th anniversary of the declaration of independence congress invites him back to the americas to celebrate he contacts his biographer at harvard and he arranges for the appointment he goes back to political activism teaching the young students at harvard about history but also the contemporary issues of society and there is no greater issue fan human
slavery in the americas the funds for his professorship is stripped away. >> the test of the affiliation? >> disposition on slavery is critical that is the accelerant that in flames the fire. >> host: at some point we do read in history for immerse slaves african-american were allowed to attend harvard do in jail but at what point to that change? >> it has been since stages at different points with the revolutionary era for the first black people that come
to campus as students is right after the revolution in the number of presidents at these early schools actually begin taking black students for the private study. >> host: for what reason? >> some are affected of the of rhetoric. the call for liberty and justice sexually resonates and they begin to question the debate. in the aftermath of the of revolution this even happened on southern campuses. >> host: really? >> guest: college faculty and student debates the of question quite a bit.
>> host: that we would recognize we talk about northeastern. >> georgia, north carolina university of north carolina has the abolitionists speaker at its graduation in the early 19th century but they publish the speeto did is circulated. >> host: are these individuals that live in the slave holding states that you write about in your book "ebony and ivy" are day abolitionists or is it a free exchange of intellectual debate and discussion? >> guest: it is also driven by abolitionists those who are uncomfortable with the continuation of slavery as is.
actually established at the end of the revolution begins to fund the best speech against slavery to expose the immorality and this is given at graduation based on something that happened in england already. fe barrault that model by offering a battle. in the aftermath because they are affected they have now been exposed to the british and slave trade and the extraordinary political force that represents umbel sides of the mantic specifically of the question of the slave trade of
another group the began to see black americans potentially as a tool for christianizing africa they begin to take on the black students with the hope to prepare them to send back to africa although they had never been there as christian missionaries under the logic. >> host: dick goes back to the early part. >> guest: 200 years earlier how do you christianize the native nation? >> host: first you christianize the children finned those that looks like them then it is the second generation. i follow you. >> and then they would be with people of their own color a and town.
he return the children as adolescents as missionaries then they do the work. >> host: as you are talking i am curious. does this create a chasm of between older black see yonder educated there are educated but for other purposes? do you understand where i am going? we often have this argument even today. you are just a to will. they discuss that is and "ebony and ivy" did they know that they were tools? >> guest: i try to be careful with native
americans and african-americans in the way i try to be cautious because for instance with the native americans king philip's war has a hand doom the resistance campaign to the english call king philip and it is that a combination against the puritans and it comes very close to conquering but without some external help christian new england might have fallen. serving with king philip one of the native people who were educated at harvard. that is also of two centuries later as we begin
to take young black men in black women to prepare the of for these various roles. so as it becomes a radical experience not necessarily civilize but the benefactors. but the capacity of people of color to use their education to pursue their own project of liberating their people. i am sure they should not be ignored or swept under the rug. i am careful much to make the argument educationally succeeded but to say that we could use it strategically is one thing. but in fact, native americans will find loads of
examples of people who took the education turning it into radical purposes within their own community. >> host: what is your research covered 10 years years, when you first started with the concept that turned into a "ebony and ivy" and dr. craig steven wilder fascinating reid, i am just curious if this is required reading for your students at m.i.t.? >> guest: i never ask my students to buy any book that i have written. [laughter] i could tell them what is in the. >> host: anything as a historian and the thing that just surprised you the you
were writing "ebony and ivy" that if i was a student in your class, a professor wilder, a what really caught your attention you're stuck with you? >> guest: honestly what i wrestle with the most rigid in my own experience is as a black man growing up was how to balance the historical narrative is so different people once you take up the topic of colleges it seems it would be less than honest if i did not explain the relationship between the college and native americans. this story does not make
sense really cannot tell the story of these colleges that are involved in the slave trade and how they created the cozy relationship in the west indies with this they traders of the northeast the in europe and why they cultivated this class of people who aggressively for so long and that story doesn't usually make it unless he think about the ambitions. >> host: you say west? west of the east coast. >> think of the native american nation along the boundary between the colonies and indian country as it is called. i felt to tell this story i
had to because of a student of native american history. >> host: what you are telling us with a common historical spot is that native americans did not make good slaves but you do talk about them being in slaved. is that and this? or a fallacy? >> yes. if you think about native slavery, and there is the enormous amount as one historian has pointed out the south carolina and north carolina created it is that since late 80th people
being sold out of the carolinas into the caribbean and up to canada. so from the 17th century on eastern canada was a healthy and receptive market for native people. there often sold into the caribbean so when it comes to the things that surprised me the most. >> that is what surprised me in the book i am glad we had a chance to discuss that because it is a common thought of casual historical conversation that the reason they were brought here is because mid-american said did not make good slaves or they ran away or disappeared >> guest: of the other
part is the extraordinary lee mortality rate in the first 100 years of contact but none of that stops us that is a lesson we should take away not a single factor stops us from capturing, is leaving, is selling native people into bondage in other parts of the americas. there are native american slaves on college campuses here in america by faculty and offices and i list some. that is common. >> host: i want to emphasize that because as people get into when do we get to the african slave? but you preface the relationship of africans and
slavery with what had happened prior to africans being in essence two's slavery. >> this is the other question as we start to wrap up, there will be those fat reid. i also have the sense that this is almost two books in one. the glossary and if the footnotes. i turn to than to to how they write about their narratives. but you have done them purpose so researchers and historians can see where you got the information then expand upon it? >> guest: bright. my goal was to take a difficult topic to make it
accessible to the public to make it readable and approachable. there is another public that i write for like academics and researchers i wanted to provide them as accurate a map as i could to help their project to the work they have been publishing has helped me with this project. >> host: i would be remiss if i did not ask about m.i.t. >> guest: we show up at the very end of the book. with the rise of the technical and engineering colleges and universities before the civil war is very much influenced by the expansion of the cod and culture of the united states. cotton textile manufacturing in new england produces a brave of new wealth but to get them running you need qualified engineers. the owners of the mill towns
begin investing with engineering and science investigation -- education. >> host: so of those. >> it is manufactured in the ring glinted. >> raw material in the south cover produced by the slave financed by bankers and insurers the industrialization. >> and the product around the world. >> we need to begin investing in razing whole towns along the river banks where we could do this large-scale manufacturing. >> host: also those many finish reading "ebony and
ivy" rate as the question doozies universities do i dare mention the word preparation? i don't know if that is your next book. [laughter] or how that discussion comes up because that may be the thought process that they end up with. >> guest: i have to go back to the most surprising thing. one of the things i learned was that history is not a race to see who is worse or most oppressed. part of the reason i wanted to to blend together with african-american in its european course -- to get to the truce and of the details
and explain them accurately. but my task is to take the leaders through that to help them and guide them through the difficult moments of history. there are consequences. >> such as? brown has already began to initiate and deployment to recommendation from the committee in 2006 that it can reconcile the current reality. >> host: you might bring people up to date. >> there was a new center that was established as the decision to make more aggressive investment of
scholarship aid in be mower aggressive for a diverse campus that recognize that education is a tool of social justice. at william and mary there is movement in the same direction there was a faculty statement about the history of the institution and that is the right to motion but i do think universities have to engage their own history in the book "ebony and ivy" race, slavery, and the troubled history of america's universities" but to deal with their own consequences
that should be left up to the university. >> is the alumni the discussion and needs to have been of the surrounding area >> the city's and the towns in which they live. >> gail is different in cambridge your william and mary and that is part of honestly grappling is also recognizing the trouble did not end when the book ends. i did it on purpose because i thought at the high point of racism vacancy it
emerging without saying we're spending another 10 years. >> host: i love the term scientific racism per for a what is scientific racism? >> guest: i write about the emergence in science that i argue not only does it become one of the key ways to establish the legitimacy. >> host: am i incorrect with the white supremacy? >> guest: i would say the racial defense with the idea that african people are inherently inferior and created by nature for a certain level of humanity.
prepared by nature for that existence so the rise of that scientific academy is coopted and in many ways it becomes one of the key areas to defend see in justices of modern slavery. fed is the path that allows universities to emerge by the 1830's being independent actors in the political sphere is the ability of faculty and officers to argue in defense of slavery. >> host: because it is a
university at the center of learning what more appropriate place to take place and validate their race of science. >> guest: rises with the race and it chris -- creates prestigious if you remember they are denominational schools. >> the university's break free because they have the capacity of days secular argument. >> host: they start with non secular funding then as they progress was more influential they break free of that and align
themselves? and my fair to say this pseudoscience? eighty-one yes. one of those key elements is the rise that creates a new public prestige but the modern university is found exactly the and. so with the question of reparations is that does not end when the bookends because the same concept become to justify brutality of the modern world. we should not forget of lot of those ideas did not have their origin on campus but they got there legitimacy on campus and got validated, a modernized on campus him social prestige on campus. >> host: is there another
10 years? [laughter] 1830's? >> guest: is somebody wants to i will help them every step of the way. the young person with a full head of hair that once that project i will help them every step of the way. >> host: to say it is a page turner does not do it justice. i encourage everyone to please read this pocked -- book. i make sure people understood this is not a textbook. this is an excellent chronological experience that you have taken the university's in and really their history from the beginning to where they are now. i do hope you spend another