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tv   Book TV Visits Norman OK  CSPAN  April 7, 2018 12:02pm-1:46pm EDT

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told me last night he really liked the episode i wrote so i'm excited about that. like i told you, i'm trying to do "devil in a blue dress" as a musical and trying to make it as a movie and i'm working on a lot of different things all at once. i'm writing a book and writing the next installment on how to write a novel. am calling it a structure role-playedat? host: mr. mosley, thank you for our conversation today. guest: thank you. it's great to be here. >> walter mosley is the author of over 40 books and has appeared on book tv several times over the last few years. watch all his programs by visiting book and typing walter mosley broke in the search box
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at the top of the page. >> welcome to norman, oklahoma, with help from our communication partners. the next hour, we will explore the literary life of this city of about 122,000, also home to the university of oklahoma. as we travel around we will speak with local authors like will ask you. >> compressed, ironically inverted miniature of the national narrative unfolding in a matter of days, weeks and months, sometimes our rather than decades as with the rest of the country and that is why it's so intensified here, so it's the land that gave birth to 20th century premier athletes, jim thorpe. its definitive white workingman hero woody guthrie. one of its most celebrated black novelists and its deadliest, but also race
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riots within a few dozen years in a hundred miles of each other. >> we begin with author carlos hill on the history of lynching in america until the response of african-americans evolved over time. >> portions of this program contains images that some viewers may find offensive. >> the hints-- history of lynching began with history of america. of the term lynching actually comes from an american revolution colonel lynch and during the revolutionary period colonel lynch was famous for beating out punishment on suspected british tourists. if you were suspected, colonel lynch as well as the men under his charge
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would summarily par and feather you and so the term lynching comes from colonel charles lynch during the american revolutionary period and during this period by and large the individuals who would be victims of being summarily punished were white. when we get to the 1880s , 1890s talking about black victims the intent was to expunge that person from the community. the intent was for that person, murder of-- collective murder to be an example for others in the community, so the intent was to kill. the intent was lethal so that others in the community would sort of stay in line. they would stand or control i mean the lynching began with a form of social control
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in the 1780s, 1790s, but by the 1880s, 1890s and definitely in the the early 20th century, lynching had become a form of racial social control where the primary victims are african-american and the primary perpetrators are white americans, so again lynching had this long history of the country, but in the modern time it's a racialized history. in my book there was a lot of evidence that i could draw upon to make this argument about the multi- faceted experience, black experience of lynching, but in the main idea on newspapers. i drew on literature. i drew on oral history and the reason why i draw on these particular sources is because what i was after was to try to understand how
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african-americans made sense of that experience of terror. i was really interested in how african-americans would narrate the experience of terror because what we have to remember is in the 19 teens in 1920s and 1930s the civil rights movements is not on the horizon. african-americans do not know, and they do not understand 20 years later there would be a mass movement that would up and dissemination in this country. it seems from the perspective of 1910 and 1920 that segregation is going to last forever and so if this is the reality about black people, perceived reality of black people in 1910, 1920, 1930, how do you make sense of the experience of terror in a way that gives hope to
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the next generation to keep fighting, to keep fighting cracks don't give up just because it looks bleak right now. so what i try to do in the book is to explain how black americans, and not just regular people, but artists, writers, how they try to make sense of a black experience anyway that will provide hope for the future, provide hope for the next generation and so what i believe i am covering the book is this tradition i refer to as slow narrative of the lynch blackbody and in the book i try to tell the story of how african-americans begin to conceive of lynching not as if the stores of victimization, but also
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as a stories of empowerment and so in these what i counseling narratives the lynch blackbody is in the background. in the foreground is who those individuals were in life and how they resist white lynch mob violence and if you could focus their, if you could focus on who they were in my, how they resisted those elements of the story could be used to give hope to, could be used to inspire next generation to mobilize against white supremacy and the mobilize against segregation and so the goal of consoling narratives was to create a usable pass path as long as the story revolved around dead blackbody saying from a tree, that's not an
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empowering story. that's not a store you can share and inspire people and so a consoling narrative lynch body were ways to move beyond the shadow in a way that would inspire future actions, so in the book i focus on the story of henry lowery and henry lowery in many ways-- i will just say he was a victim of a lynching in arkansas in 1920 and lowery is important because the naacp uses him in his case to generate a lot of attention for their anti- lynching movement. that they were sort of getting off the ground.
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began in 1916, but by 1920 the naacp is fully enmeshed in and take lynching crusades of the henry lowery case was a case where they really poured their resources into trying to depict him as a victim of white supremacy, as a victim of white mob violence and so they essentially creates several news releases that really emphasized the lowery as a victim, as someone who civil rights were stripped, someone who was burned at the stake. i don't want to get into the gory details of his lynching, but it was one of the worst in american history witnessed by at least from our estimates 10000 people in the arkansas delta and so
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the lowery case is a clear case for at least with naacp of black humanization. however, it was interesting to see how the black press at the time soft depict the case and several publications focused on the resistance that lowery offered. they focused in on how lowery refused to whimper. he refused to beg for his life. his courage, his bravery in the face of terror and so the naacp chose to tell a story of a black victimization because they made the calculation that it would help their efforts to secure an anti- lynching bill in congress.
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of the more they honed in on how black people were powerless, how they were victims of lynch mobs of lynch mobs were running amok the more support than he anticipated they receive in congress. the black press had different goals. they are not trying to convince congress to pass an anti- lynching mob exclusively. they are also writing to a bat-- black public who want to understand this case in more nuanced ways and in particular they want to understand who the victim was in my spirit they want to understand what did he do and in response to this his anticipated lynching and so those are the details that several black publications, namely the chicago defender would sort of base their sort
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of depiction of the case on, so just with that one case there are two different traditions of telling the story of lynching. there is the black victimization narrative that they needed to tell to get support for legislation and then you have the consoling narrative that focused on henry lowery is a person, who he was as a man, the light he lived in the community as well as the resistance he offered in response to this threat of lynching and so that story is more resemblance of consoling narrative of the blackbody and so you have in just one case competing narrative traditions, but for the black community telling the story of lynching was about getting help
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to the community, future generations to resist white supremacy. as long as the story focused exclusively on terror, id humanized black bodies, that story wasn't a story that would create a usable path for black people, poor black self-determination, black empowerment. what i wanted to share with readers is that the black experience of lynching changed over time what plant people, how african-americans understood a lynching changed over time given the circumstances of the times at one moment. its import for the naacp to highlight black people as victims and another time it's important for black people to be highlighted as resisting lynching,
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as fighting back against lynch mobs because it has-- because of the intended record: impact it would have perhaps had on my community and so this is much more competent story of the black experience of lynching. in my eyes it had not been told, so i wanted to tell the story as best as i could in one place. >> next, arthur rc davis talks about the influence of indigenous latin american cultures on the development of north america. >> we are at the oklahoma contemporary arts center, wonderful place in oklahoma city and this is the home of the oklahoma cultural center which are just started this year in february and a mural behind us is interesting he's the executive director of the oklahoma latino cultural center
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and this is a painting depicting an important image from the day of the dead and unimportant tradition in america that no one knows how old the day is in the americas. it's always been there and there are so many really important cultural strands that come through the day of the dead. it's like a treasure trove of very important cultural indicators to study with the americas having to do with the conception of death, the human body, citizenship and the americas, so many issues that come up in relation to images like this. mestizos are mixed race people in broadest sense sparked out in the spanish colonial period, but not really represent mixed-race people in the americas, so in casting the broadest nets and i'm latino. i think unfairly
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assimilated latino, professional and i feel wonderful about the world diamond and largely appreciate it. there are millions and millions of latinos who are from the americas and never feel they are welcome as a place they are actually from and i wanted to make the book is unambiguous as possible. you have been here since before european people and i just didn't want the title to be interpreted any other way. my book as an argument and argument is that latinos need to stop apologizing for being in a place they are actually from and they have the deepest roots as partially indigenous people and it's also a book for non- latinos. i want non- latinos to understand what mexican-americans are trying to achieve and what they deal with everyday.
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i want them to have a little more sympathy and stop making latinos that enemy. as i kind of section doubt where the latino community has had a pretty strong impact since the 1960s having to do with identity, attitudes towards land. the rise into convoluted or, i made discoveries that shocked me a little bit. there was so much critical information on so methinks that was not entering the national conversation particularly about race and the history of the americas and kind of alarming a little bit because i thought of
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myself as may be digging out things america needed to know more about and the evidence very often was there was a lot of low hanging fruit that no one cared to pick. a question of identity, mestizo people which include mexican-americans, you know the broad latino category in general-- general. most people in the americas, many countries of latin america are mestizo people, mixed-race people. there is a history that has to do with the spanish colonial period in the spanish coming to the new world and the short story here is that the spanish set in motion some generation of a lot of the identities having to do with indigenous people in the african people and the chinese people and others that they brought into the americas and as a colonial power they felt a river losing control of what they set in motion or did they
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didn't know who these people were in these new communities developing. it was happening so quickly, so they created a system of racial-- racial classification where there are 16 categories and these categories start with kind of imagine four rows of four because it's often depicted in the painting and the first spot is occupied by a white spaniard-- you move to the right in each case people get more racially mixed and theoretically by the time you get to 16th category you have described everyone in the americas. this is really racist stuff. the spanish were setting themselves up as the norm. the white people. then they created the notion of a brown body and a brown body with a distant reflection of their own body and serve a bad coffee-- copy and once it got further mixed particularly with
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africans it became as the spanish put it polluted and there was no coming back and it is so pervasive that if you are a person living in the americas now and you look down at your own skin, your arm, your leg, whatever you are looking through the lens the spanish created. one of the things my book tries to do is say, folks, wake up. something so powerful as racism always has a history to and if you pull it by the roots you have to understand the history. there is a long tradition in the americas-- in spanish law and a mexican law there was a concept that it's almost gone now. something kind of similar to it. it really could it be sold. has to do with the commonwealth and so land
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that is ejdios, traditional land, cultural traditional association with that land. your grandparents are probably buried on that land. in modern america, land is sold on the open market to the highest bidder. now, there are people that have nothing to do with latino culture, professional geographers in the academy, in the universities of the us that have been worried about this for a long time and a culture survives where there's almost no cultural association. this is never happened before where land is a commodity sold at the highest bidder and it's like a piece of plastic that will be shaped by whatever the next need for it is and it doesn't convey tradition depending on the culture and has nothing to do with value any longer. the body and the sort--
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short of it is in modern america we think of the body is being disposable and right down to the present when in flint, michigan, they were willing to have whole communities drink badwater for 10 years. in new line assumption was these bodies are disposed. in this traditional field the body is never disposable circuit is sacred, so there's an incredible conflict here and this has not been dealt with enough. there are indigenous latino mexican-americans traditions. the body is a world under itself. it's the world we live in. the second three errors are more indices of changes in the first. for example popular culture.
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if we look at day of the dead practices, cinco de mayo practices, low rider car culture i talk about that of my book, what we are looking at is a kind of staged encounter of mexican american culture and the balance from mexican american of how much mexican culture, how much american culture, kind of mixed in your life. it's always changing. it's a dynamic thing. popular culture is where that's played out if you want to see where mexican-americans are in terms of drawing on tradition versus contemporary commercial reality in america, pop there culture reveals that because that's where it's played out at a minimum minute basis. i also talk about voice. there's a great mexican american writer who went to the university that i teach at. he got a phd at the university of oklahoma
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and he derived from texas. his breakthrough novel, the earth did not devour him, really signaled to the country that mexican american culture had arrived at the point where it deserved a national audience in his book at a national audience. right after that a year later and over the next 10 years a whole lot of mexican american writers appeared that really helped to define the culture and brought it to the united states. once those writers were writing, the country could pay attention to mexican-americans culture because they could go to local stores and buy those books. there was a sense they were culture crossing. there was a sense they were maybe hearing into an exotic culture a little bit, but that's not a good thing to exotic size another culture, but it was a good thing with the window to the mexican american culture.
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a lot of those writers in my last category that emergence of chicago literature and, culture, a lot of those writers became professors in american universities, so there were subways-- suddenly these and i good friend was one of them. he taught in the english department at the university of new mexico this is a really big thing, the emergence of chicano literature and the writers like that teaching chicano studies that really brought mexican-americans latino culture to the nation in a whole different way because it was being institutionalized. now, publishers like warner broke, scribners etc. were presenting in framing this culture so there was a kind of a crossing of a threshold that had not happened before. my sense is that these six areas if someone reads the books--
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booking its thrall six they will have a sense, sort of like a cutting the culture right through the middle and they can look at the impact that the mexican-american latino culture has been having since the 60s. there are millions of americans still who have never known a black person. at they don't know a mexican-americans, may be only met a latino. they are well-intentioned, but you can only care what you know about and if you don't know anything about the black community or mexican-american community and you are hearing things in the media that are sometimes sensational you build your responses on that and so it is a real problem in this country. i don't know how to fix it and again i think it's a lot of folks that are well-meaning that just haven't met anyone like themselves enough to know to actually make
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a difference and a similar kind of problem is that the mexican-american community because they were marginalized, don't see themselves reflected in the culture often haven't known enough about themselves and here is a really important fact. there was some information so important that it changed the people who know it and your history, your own culture, your own origin , that is information so important and when you know it you're different and so that's where chicano studies, chicano literature and i hope in a small way my book will bring that culture out in the open more because it's not my book that will create the changes, it's the knowledge that may be will help unlock information so important for the changes of the people who know it. >> a look at norman's
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local literary culture continues as author will let ask you explores what it means to be an oklahoman. >> the title of my book is most american, notes from a windy place. so, this essay really states my thesis i suppose you would say about oklahoma's history and in it i say oklahoma's history is a compressed ironically inverted miniature of the national narrative unfolding in a matter of days and weeks and months, sometimes hours. rather than decades as with the rest of the country and that's why it's so intensified here this is the land that gave birth to 20 century premier athletes. definitive white workingman hero. one of its most celebrated black novelists, ralph ellison and deadliest, the tulsa race rights always and if a few dozen years and 100 miles of each other. oklahoma's the only
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place anywhere that ever spawned committed struggles to create a all-black state and in all indian state and yet the very first law enacted by our virgin legislature when we became a state work jim crow laws, the laws of segregation. still, we have more corporative black counts that any statement nation. still, more native survived here than anywhere the continent, but with added irony that in oklahoma didn't live on reservations. in the land of-- [inaudible] they give us most of their land through the allotment act, through murder, through chicanery, through legislation.
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one of the things that's most important to me to express in the essay is the quintessential nature of oklahoma is a profoundly american place both by its history, culture, contemporary culture and all of the forces that have gone into creating this state and so that is the most american part and that is the title essay and then there's another essay called a wounded place and that creates the subtitle and it speaks of oklahoma's racial wounds, the westward encroachment on native land as she moved west from the eastern coast across the continent the inversion of that is that actually natives were taken from their homeland and not just in the southeast. that's what we think of most. chickasaw, creek, seminal.
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if you look at oklahoma and where it's situated in the national-- the physical map we are not the heartland. we are the gut. there the underbelly. native tribes, they are spread all over the continent and they were concentrated in the middle, so that's one. then oklahoma became the promised land for a number of whites who came here. we have the great western myth of the land it runs and so that perpetual migration and encroachment from the native point of view of white settlers that happened really all across the continent happened here like in one day they had the land runs and a gun went off at noon and people
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pounded south in the land run and state claims and those were primarily people from the dominant culture. there were african-american and-- wouldn't have been native american, but other ethnic people who also staked place, but they were mostly white. so, the overall narrative is concentrated and happened-- unfolded at such a rapid pace in the latter part of the 19th century moving on into the 20th century and oklahoma's only been a state since 1907. it's like the 46 state, so other states much further west had become states before we did. so, those are part of the way. i think also it's the coming together here of african-american, native american and anglo-american people that created a racial
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cauldron that boiled over in the early part of the 20th century particularly in what is called now the tulsa race riot though many will this not. any call it the race massacre. it was an assault by some 10000 armed whites on the wealthy well-to-do black community of north toll suck it was called greenland that happened in 1921, and i have made 31st to june 1 of 1921 and it's the most massive assaults by white americans on black americans that happened -- those kinds of things were happening they happened in florida, arkansas and other places at that time, but nothing to the degree and drama and the complete destruction of a very very wealthy well-to-do community successful and prosperous african americans, people living
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in a certain kind of community in oklahoma and that it was covered over, that history disappeared and it's the way-- in a lot of ways we have disappeared our national narrative altogether. we don't really want to think about our founding in slavery. we don't really want to think about or own and accept the broadest outline strokes of the genocide of native people or ethnic cleansing that happened with the removal when masses of the people were moved here on what has become the trail of tears. those are parts of the ways and then think about oklahoma's-- our contemporary characters. in the early part of the 20th century we were the most red state on the left, which is that there were-- the
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socialists candidate for president in the early mid 1919 election, that early part of the 20th century received more votes in oklahoma than any other state. it was a strong union state. it was very-- had a very progressive socialist underpinning and then now, we are one of the most red states on the right and that has happened within a century and reflects a lot of elements having to do with the larger culture. the dominant culture here is very religious. it still predominantly white unlike other areas of the country. it's very conservative, very rooted in the land and in those ways i think it's also part of how it reflects the national narrative and the national culture.
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so, we have these natural disasters. we have the tornadoes of oklahoma, the infamous for and when something happens like there have been several devastations in the city of more, which many people know about. when that happens and there's an f5 tornado and everything is laid flat and people are suffering, the people of oklahoma come together in really profound ways that erase all of our divisions and that's also again the way americans do it, so we had the oklahoma city bombing of the federal building in 2005, which in many ways pre-staged 911 and people responded after the bombing. some people asked me, why go there, why do you have to go and bury all of this ugliness. what's important for us.
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it is smoothed over coming out it's at least scabbed over. it's not a nice smooth scar. why open that wound and it's because really the wound can never be healed unless we do that and so it will continue to erupts every few decades, every few years, every few generations until we come to own what the true nature of our history is. >> founded in 1890 the university of oklahoma is now home to over 30,000 students. we speak with author kyle harper with more on how disease and climate change impact of the follow-up realm. >> one thing that's exciting about being an agent historian is we are learning a lot that we do not know before about the human past, even the human past thousands of years
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separated from us and it's not the continued discovery of new documents although we do continue to find new evidence of the traditional type, but we are acquiring new evidence of a totally novel nontraditional type from the national sciences including paleoclimatology is about what the physical environment was like and how the climate has changed and varied over time and includes dna evidence, biological evidence, evidence from archaeological samples from skeletons that tell us about the people and also the passage that exist in the past. of the fate of rome is the story of the fall of the roman empire, the classical historical questions of how doesn't impart its one of the most dominant powerful empires that any human civilization ever created, how does it fall how does it ceased to be a dominant political entity and my theory is that to tell this story right we have to include the powerful
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force of the natural, physical environment including climate change and biological events. a good example of this is the first pandemic, the first plague pandemic at the end of the roman empire in the middle of the sixth century there was an enormous mortality that that engulfs the entire empire and beyond and fills unprofitable part of the act-- the population. it's called the plague, the bubonic plague, one of the most devastating pathogens that humanity has ever faced and yet even though our historical records describe the horrific a
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facts of this pandemic the historical record only exists for certain parts of the world and even within the former roman empire the evidence we have is actually very biased towards large cities and particularly one city constantinople which was the couple of rome and it was just lingering question of how important was the plague outside of the areas where we happen to have historical records and it's a very hard question to answer and it now, we are starting to be held to answer that question from the dna evidence. dna of the bacteria that cause the pandemic has been found from skeletons in mass graves , from places far outside constantinople, tiny villages in southern germany that are nowhere near the center of power or trade and that tell us that if the plague had reached places like this then it must have truly reached almost everywhere and it helps us take the
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written record, which gives us a sense of what it was like, where it struck and to be of to say this actually stricken places that are totally dark and to the mine those together to get a sense of what a catastrophe this was. well, we all know with-- we live in a world where we are concerned with the effects of climate change and have a deep need to understand how the climate system is changing which requires a sense of how works in the climate is certainly being altered by human activity, by the pollution greenhouse gases, but the system also has a brat ground level of variability and change. it wasn't simply unchanging until human activity started changing it and because it's become so important to understand that natural background there's been a huge effort over the last generation to try to understand how the
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climate system naturally works and what the past clients of look like and so earth scientists have looked at ice cores, which are record of the chemistry of the atmosphere in a way on a year-by-year basis going back thousands and thousands of years. they have looked at tree rings similar to any trees growth can tell you about temperature, part two-- precipitation it can be a very detailed high-resolution record of the past climate and lake records, ocean records, all of these have their contributions to make with a deeper understanding of how the earth's climate has changed over past times and so for the storied sin-- historians it's interesting because it turns out the kind of timescale we are interested in, the rise about civilization at the climate changes on those scales. changes on annual come
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on centennial scales and these changes have had really important consequences and for my period i'm interested in the roman empire and it turns out that there is times and ran history climate change is important and could either stabilize and contribute to the success of the romans when the climate was favorable. it could also challenge the romans with salmon aren't-- famine or drought, reduced migration and geopolitical challenges that the romans found difficult to manage, so it's been an important part of human history from the beginning. a great example of this is a volcanic eruption in the year 536 a.d. of the written record, historical sources widely testified to a really weird climate that year. was very anomalous. they described a year without a summer. 18 months when the sun was invisible and now it turns out that we have ice core and tree ring
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records that helps understand what our human witnesses were observing or did they didn't understand what they were experiencing, but now, we know it 536 with a large volcanic eruption somewhere in the northern hemisphere that caused the sun to appear damned for apparently quite some time and so you have that synthesis of the human observation and the physical testimony and that was followed a few years later and 540 by another massive volcanic eruption that tropics and this eruption event caused massive and instantaneous effects in the climate system. it became cooler immediately in the decade that followed the first russian is probably the coldest decade in the last several thousand years and cause all kinds of challenges for the people who experienced it. >> i hope if we tell the story of the fall of the
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roman empire and we include these fascinating new kinds of evidence, the paley and climate evidence, that dna evidence that we can make the story richer and there's always a kind of fascination about rome. there is something about this civilization that speaks to us and it always has and it's always been that way. the powerful imagery of the similar thick-- civilization, the poignant visions of the ruins that they are still there when you go to the city of rome or all around the roman empire. is sort of captures the imagination and their something so human about it here cal on a empire, a civilization is powerful have simply transformed beyond recognition and i hope that by telling a story the way that i have tried to and including nature, including the
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role of climate change, including the role of pandemic disease that we see the human story has always been about our relationship with nature and in this most important chapter of the past that has this powerful emotional appeal to it that if we get the story writer and realize that our civilization date is always bound up with our relationship with the natural world and i think it changes your perspective here our world is different from the romans and what happened to them is not exactly what will happen to us, but i think it can change the way we think of ourselves, the way we think of our society and deepen our sense of how interconnected we are to the physical and biological the park-- environment. >> with the help of our cox communication cable partners we are in norman, oklahoma, exploring the local literary scene. next, author sarah john
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on the history of student activism at the university of oklahoma. >> the reason i started the book in 1962 is because in the spring of 1962 a group of rotc students at the university of oklahoma decided they really had to start an alternative student newspaper. there is too much conformity. there is too much of an ethicist on downplaying controversy so there is this quest for knowledge and trying to get people to think and so that theme gets picked up by another group of students that-- the start a marxist reading club and it's a small group of students, but they were interested in new ideas and they were also interested in oklahoma's more radical past that a lot of people had forgotten about which is that at one time in the 19 teens prior to the start of world war i oklahoma and the largest socialist population of any state in the union and so they start making connections
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back to that so they are reading marxist literature and reading about oklahoma socialists and out of that group emerges them first chapter of student for democratic society and the state of oklahoma pick they filled out the paperwork to become an official student organization it gets flagged pretty quickly because the ministration realizes that there will be questions about students for a democratic society and so they kind of monitor it and within a years time they are getting complaints from the governor one team to know exactly what this organization is, if it's causing any problems on campus and to put it in perspective the students for democratic society on average would have 12 members, 20 members, a very small organization, but because of the national opposition-- he gets a lot of attention
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so they started a student newspaper, members of the state legislature would occasionally get copies of it if they sign a reference to socialism, marxism, race relation, antiwar they would underline those and then the president at the university would get yet-- letters complaining about the students, wanting to know what could be done to stop the organization and so what happens is that you continue to see surveillance of students involved about the university of oklahoma and oklahoma state university, the oklahoma city field office the fbi has to keep tabs on activism in the state and at one point in one of their reports in the mid- 1960s oklahoma city field office said there are only three or four students and we
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think there may be a dozen at the university of oklahoma norman and that they don't seem to be planning anything other than a few minor antiwar protests and because of that we don't really have plans right now to try and do anything about them, not much is going on and it j edgar hoover actually responds and says the fact that you have indicated in your previous memos that two chapters of sts exist in the state mean that you need to develop a plan to neutralize them and i look forward to hearing your plans. part of the story of what happens in oklahoma and in the national context is the notion that three of the members at oklahoma state university, that it merited an fbi counterintelligence plan to try to neutralize it or that the fbi would feel the need to invest in finding performance, which they did at the university of oklahoma to try to get rid of the organization is kind of
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mind boggling at a certain level, that there would be that level of national insistence by j edgar hoover that it had to cease to exist, that it was a matter of national security that you completely obliterate this organization. no organization, say maybe the black panthers in the 1960s gets more attention from the fbi then students for democratic, it's quite staggering what happens in terms of the surveillance culture and while all of that is going on is still wasn't enough to satisfy the governor of the state, so governor dewey bartlett in march, 1968, following a student protest against general luis b hershey the director of social service, the small demonstration in oklahoma city and that convinces governor bartlett to create a secret agency to spy on suspected radicals in the state and these are students that are
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arrested and quickly released, zero violence takes place and when governor bartlett creates the office of interagency corporation he doesn't stop-- doesn't help a legislature or asked for their approval so they housed in the department of military and diverted national guard funding to pay for this secret agency and over the next two years they amassed files on over 6000 suspected radicals in the state and outside of the states. 1970 is really turning points in what happens in oklahoma. it is true nationally as well, but part of what happens is-- in oklahoma is that not only does the office of interagency corporation get exposed, but may, 1970, shortly before the exposé is released may of 1970 marked the most volatile period in the us for antiwar protests is what happened with
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the massacre for armed students at kent state in may, 1970. one of the more interesting things that happened in oklahoma is the way that students and the administration and the governor's office will respond to his tunic protests-- two-- student protests following the events at kent state, so as students began finding out on may 5 what happened at kent state with these unarmed students killed, ohio national guard, you have vigils across the country. there are vigils on half a dozen college campuses in oklahoma, university of oklahoma is no exception with a lot of students deeply troubled by what has happened and as it's playing out the governor wants to send in the national guard, wants to make sure that the school stays open,
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is eager to use force, if necessary, to keep students from protesting and what happens at the university of oklahoma's quite unique because on may 5, there is a demonstration against the war in vietnam and to express anger and frustration over the death of the kent state students in this particular demonstration on may 5 becomes violence. there is a student who waves a red flag. he's arrested by the police. they believe he has waived a vietcong flag and he gets arrested by the police. students surrounded the police car. they are trying to keep it from moving forward. they let the air out of the tires. there is an effort to kind of attack the car. one person even tries to light a rag and put in the gas tank to set it
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on fire. this is the moment of intense fear and in the midst of all of this one of the police officers loses his god and they don't know who has it and there are several moments where it's extraordinarily tense and they are trying to figure out what to do. a student finds the gun and returns it to a police officer, so that moment of crisis passes, but it took the use of state troopers to free the police car, get the young man that had been arrested and two other students that also got arrested and get them removed from the premises. there are a couple dozen students injured when all of this chaos breaks out. only one student goes to the hospital, so it could have been worse and to put it in context , 400 universities and colleges across the country that close down during this time. national guard units are calling over two dozen
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times across the country because it's an intense period conflict. the university of oklahoma with the may 5, incident this whole plan is put together between the university administration, campus security, student leaders and more radical activists kind of outside the student government and the whole intent is to protect students and allow them the opportunity to voice their frustration and to protest and the whole idea is to protect student lives in the governor really wanted to send in the national guard to stop demonstrations from happening. all of this culminates on may 12, when students are preparing for the big end of the year are otc parade and students are planning a protest in the governor wants to send in the national guard to stop it from happening and he has
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been located off-campus. there are a few hundred highway patrol off-campus waiting to converge on norman if the possibility rises and what campus security realizes is that state troopers come back on campus, especially the national guard comes back on campus and then someone could get killed and in one moment the governor who has got people on campus reporting back to him about the protests and what's going on and he's ready to send in the national guard during the may 12, parade and the president at the time so george cross had retired and george colman was in office at that point and he said it sent in the guard and president holloman said if you do that then i will notify everyone that the blood is on your hands. if you make this choice, students will get hurt and everyone will know
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it was your call. do not do this and he really tried to beseech the governor to respect the lives of students and understand that if they come on campus people will be hurt. i think one of the things nationally now is that there is not enough tolerance for diverse perspectives. that is perhaps a lesson to be learned that on the one hand you don't want all activists in a single category and on the other hand it's important when you think about free speech issues today both to allow on college campuses voices of dissent whether they are far to the left or far to the right that it's fundamental to a democracy is to engage in free speech, but to shut down free speech and only be willing to listen to things that reinforce your own worldview is
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antithetical to democracy for one thing and another it undermines what college i should be about, which is exposing students to new ideas, giving them the opportunity to make -- make their own decisions and reach their conclusions. i think that's one of the really important lessons that can be taken nationally from student activism. >> we are here at the western history collection at the university will,. .. from the 19th century to the 20th century with a special emphasis on oklahoma and
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surrounding states and 39 native american tribes located here after having been removed and confined to indian territory in the 19th century. this particular item is our newest acquisition. we purchased it last year. many of our materials were donated but we do purchase some. this is from the 10th cavalry, the regiment of buffalo soldiers. they have the names of the people serving whether they were present or absent and if absent why. it has the rate of pay, how much they were paid for april 30th to june 30, 1872. one that i found interesting was if the soldiers owed the united states government money for tobacco to use and that was taken out of their pay and received a clothing allowance
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and that is indicated on the master role as well. it would be an ideal resource for those interested in family history. it lists their names, their rank, where they were recruited. the wild west showed originating in late 1800s, they started in omaha, nebraska with buffalo bill cody's show in 1883. some of the performers were from oklahoma. and they started their own wild west show so we have advertisements for those oklahoma-based shows. this was a poster for the miller brothers 101 branch, a performance in the 1920s or
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30s. the item next to it is a souvenir program from poni ville's wild west show, it describes acts, performers who were cowboys or native americans from all over the world. they also used exotic animals in their shows. these were popular in the 1800s and 1900s. probably some nostalgia for some skills that were starting to fade away dealing with the open range, horsemanship, shooting, fighting skills, staged mock battles and the 101 ranch and poni bill showed
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internationally. to transport employees and livestock and props and so forth all over the country. these were from the miller brothers 101 ranch collection, hundreds of photographs and wild west show. and in the left-hand corner, in the 20s and 30s, and a working ranch. and there were agricultural products and dairy, it was enormous, and 110,000 acres, and other photographs are from the show, we don't know where this is but it is in a city,
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smokestacks in the background, traveling from city to city any agent up ahead, 10 or 18 -- 15 acre parcel of land, and in the upper right-hand corner, one of the performers with his trick mule, will rogers, will rogers would have been at his heyday at this time, a radio personality, actor and social and political commentator. and this is a little boy on a calf honing his cowboy skills. this photograph is - and the
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wichita agency, the photographer, and the decision for the agency, this lovely image of this young girl and mrs. hume was good about taking candid shots. started taking these photographs in 1891. this was shortly after photography, the successful to amateur photographers, these are on glass plate negatives, the more acceptable form and these glass plate negatives are very fragile and extremely heavy. this good book is a souvenir from aunt susan's cooking school held in oklahoma city throughout the 1930s.
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and susan was a fixture in oklahoma households for most of that decade, and come across these paper clippings and other collections, these were theater books with recipes and advertising that and susan recommended. the other book was originally a wallpaper sample book and a lady named trudy flanagan hildebrand cut and pasted recipes from magazines, some from food boxes to create this cookbook in 1933. how they prepared it, this journal was written by a marine who served during world war ii. he was from oklahoma, he went
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biro wayne. he served in iceland 1931 through 1942. this little journal he kept his from his time in iceland. you can get a feel for his opportunity and his wit in his journals. he jokes about the efficiency of the military, after having evidently been there for a while. in 1943 he is transferred to the pacific theater and serves on various islands in the pacific it is killed in july 1944 on guam in action with the enemy. it is really moving to read his experiences in his own words, and capturing his personality.
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these two items from university archives in western history collections, and the original charter for what it is formed in 1890, it was robert martin, oklahoma territory, the university was founded before oklahoma became a state in 1907. the photographs are part of the expensive photograph collection we have at the university of oklahoma campus. in the 1950s, the same architecture now in this building, the sign is still
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there. and over time - i think they represent well. from all walks of life, whether they are educated or not so educated. they were working in all different professions, some of them are teachers or missionaries, lawyers or doctors or housewives, or cowboys, outlaws, sculptors of various types. we are fortunate many of these materials have survived, in that time. it can really enliven the study of undergraduate students or k-12 students, and referred to
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as a primary source rather than working with a history textbook. it makes these people from the past come alive, we hear their words and see their face. >> in norman, oklahoma getting a tour of the city, andy rieger tells us about places we are going to see today. >> we are at the train station, this is where our city began. we will drive around the downtown area and go east, a large statement or hospital for many years. and the navy actually had a huge face here to train pilots at the beginning of world war ii. when we go to campus, season university scenes, take it to the football stadium and go
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down and see some research. >> can you tell us about yourself or your viewers, how long you have lived here, what have you done? >> i live for my entire life, grew up here at the university and worked at different newspapers but the last 20 years i was editor of the movement in norman and retired two years ago and do some investments and teach part-time at the university journalism program. my great-grandfather was a part of the land run in 1889 and he helped build the railroad tracks, the family has a lot of history. >> we look forward to our journey today. >> in norman railroads in 1874, a few years later the train station was obviously a big deal, brought a lot of students
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here, settlers came on the train and later brought sailors here and the amtrak service to fort worth, 35 trains a day come through norman. dirksen senate office building 0 what is the population here in norman? >> 120,000, 20,000 students, commuter city, and they leave town every morning, once the interstate was completed it made commuting to the city much easier so more people moved to norman, good schools, good lifecycle. this is the old downtown area 3 blocks east of the railroad
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tracks and 9-5 crowd and a 5-9 crowd. more restaurants and entertainment places, some stores, it turned around the last few years. more traffic down here, more variety of retail services in the downtown area. >> that is where we passed through the mural. take some history. >> the land run in april 18, '89, opening up at noon on april 22, 1889, when people came and staked their claim, 160 acres. the community began developing after that. the university came in 1890. we are headed to the east side of town and what you see
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straightahead we will see closer. some of the remnants of the state hospital for mental institutions which were opened here 1895 and the state had 3 mental hospitals, western states and eastern state in oklahoma. thousands of patients lived here on the grounds, my grandfather was a psychiatrist. they lived in a hole in the corner so my father grew up here. and this is the city within the city. there are 5000 patients that lived on the premises. the first gated community all around and had their own
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laundry, their own commissary, they grew their own food and beef and had farms and recreation areas. a huge place for patients was the treatment of a mental illness changed the more of it was outpatient community-based treatment so wasn't as big a need for people to be inpatient treatment anymore. it is still hospital griffin hospital now and they serve a lot more people on an outpatient basis. >> host: in oklahoma city, - >> because of that people in norman, better appreciation and understanding of mental illness. >> to the north of downtown.
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and the navy had two major bases in world war ii and they were located in oklahoma. they involve aviation, they taught pilots, machinists, nurses, machinists, in world war ii. max westheimer field named after world war i aviator. this was turned over to the navy, and had dozens and dozens of buildings, a bowling alley,
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drill holes, another city within the city, 1942 or 1942, after the war, recently in the korean war, muslim university property in the city, seeing some of it. approaching the university, the president's home on the left, pres. boren and mrs. born. >> tell the audience who president born is. >> a former state legislator, governor, us sen. and came here 1994, the u.s. senate, and not
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just giving being done in washington anymore, the second-longest serving, president of the university, and in evans hall. >> host: is significant about the university of oklahoma, when was the university established? >> the university first classes held in 1890, has been here a long time. they had the land run here in 1889 a year later, having classes at university towards the downtown area. to the right, football stadium,
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and practiced their religion. >> athletics an important part of norman. two things lift oklahoma out of the depression. the grapes of wrath, went to california, no work here, in oklahoma, rogers and hammerstein musical. >> will use a little bit of that? >> i don't think i can. >> the emergence of postwar
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football oklahoma, young coach, former military person. and older players came to play, first national championship to win two more, 55, 66, 74, 75, 85, 7 national championships here. gave the people of oklahoma something to be proud of, helped lift us out of the dust fall and depression years. coming into an area in research park campus, the centerpiece would be the national weather center the national weather service, huge entity combines
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federal installations, university, research, a whole part of it, coming from all over the world. we are in tornado alley. a lot of tornados in shelters. >> why was norman, oklahoma the center of analyzing whether data? >> a nucleus of researchers in the 60s and that grew from the meteorology program, developed and some real advancements in
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radar. radar is what they have known for, storm detection predicting tornadoes, several days in advance if conditions are likely for tornadoes anywhere. that came about because of great researchers in the field. >> thank you so much for joining us today. >> a great place to live, work and raise a family. >> thank you very much. >> twice a month, c-span cities to us take booktv and american history tv to explore a selective city. working with cable partners, literary and historic sites, we interview local historians, authors and civic leaders, and past interviews on tour and online by going to and selecting c-span cities tour from the series drop-down at the top of the page or
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visiting you can follow it on twitter where behind-the-scenes images and video of our visit, the handle is@c-spancities. here's a look at the authors recently featured on booktv's afterward, our weekly author interview program that includes best-selling nonfiction books and guest interviewers. james swanson traces the event went leading to the assassination of martin luther king jr..
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>> one person wants to create a race war by walking into a church, sitting through a bible study for an hour, being welcomed into an environment where you are the only one that stands out. your only objective for being there is to start a race war in the home of the beginning of the civil war. to get that call on that wednesday night from a sheriff's deputy, there has been a shooting. michael attended a miami church
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before he passed away. crap - the first person to call me, and eight other lives that were stolen. to then turn to trey gowdy, obviously very different, upbringing, philosophical disposition, faith perspective and in the middle of racially tinged atrocity helped be the first person, and for someone to anchor, said this earlier to you, have an anchor. said so much about our state,
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our friendship and so much about what is going to happen in charleston, south carolina. >> afterward airs on booktv at 10:00 eastern and 9:00 pm eastern and pacific. all previous programs are available to watch on our website. >> you are probably wondering how this all started. writing a bunny book about the life of the vice president, so charlotte is going to take it from there. >> this is really cool and special, a dream of mine since i was very small, to have a book out especially a children's book, and with my dad. it is really fun.
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i want to talk about a lot of people ask on how old he is and when we got him. i want to introduce you to him a little bit since he is not here, he is resting. a lot of press interviews. we thought we would let him rest up. i got marlon when studying in college apart university in chicago, digital cinema and english so i wrote a short film. i had a short film and needed a bunny in it. a lot of told me change it to a turtle or something that is easier to find. it really needs to be a bunny. it was fate that it would happen across marlon, looked
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online, found him on craigslist. he is a craigslist bunny. no price was listed. i asked the owner how much for the bunny and he said make me an offer so it became this godfather joke with my friends. we should name him marlon brando. i said no. we have to name him marlon bundo. that is how marlon came into our family. he lived with me in college, that is not actually allowed. home and part of our family and one of our pets. low and behold, thrust into
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this new role after the election, we were moving to dc and all our pets with us on air force 2, we weren't going to leave them behind, staff people were helping us unload marlon in his cage, and seemed to go viral, the bunny was famous, we didn't understand why he was famous but that started the whole thing going. >> on inauguration day, moved to the naval observatory where - my mom and dad lived there too.
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>> just an afterthought now. we get an instant graham and all, i think twitter was taken. somebody took it, all over the news one day. and the first post, in his little cage on our second floor of the naval observatory which is where we live, hopped out of his cage, and marlon's first step in the naval observatory, my sister's boyfriend gets credit, he came up with that right away. so he is bunny of the united states and that is his official role.
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that is where it started, got really popular. his first steps in the naval observatory, something we wanted to talk about so just to let you know we keep saying naval observatory but a lot of people don't know what we are talking about when we say that. the first vice president to live in the naval observatory was mondale, rockefeller was the first one who could have lived there but he decided he decorated and entertained there but every vice president's family since the mondales lived at the naval observatory. the naval observatory is a naval base. there really is a working observatory across the street. the whole property is 72 acres,
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where the actual house is where we live, the naval observatory is a victorian, on the cover of a book, a big rack around porch, it is very private in washington dc. there are no tours of the naval observatory. the naval observatory is private. the way the story got started started years ago, when charlotte learned to talk, then she became a storyteller, she would line up her stuffed animals and tell the stories
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and would regale them with all kinds of adventures. they shared a room, almost really into high school years, audrey would say tell me a story, i can't falsely bear charlotte would start a story and the next night would continue that story. and majored in digital cinema. someday this book was going to happen. >> when people ask how did you come up with the idea, it started with marlon, we had no idea how many is up to. >> 27000 followers.
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way more than me. >> doesn't even have them. he is very popular and it makes sense to us. marlon is so adorable, fun to take pictures of, he will follow was around the house and get exercise, people ask us all the time, how did you get in to sit in front of the fire or open the book? he does that. he has a little personality. it started with instagram page, we thought she should do a children's book on this, would be really fun and a partnership. was always going -- she is so
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talented. we decided to do it together and when we wanted to pick a theme for the book it made sense to make it educational so it doesn't wasn't a story about marlon but would teach the role of the vice president, whoever he or she is, every vice president has specific official duties and i didn't know about that until my dad was vice president. it started with we wanted to help kids and adults and teachers and educators, how to teach about the vice presidency. >> you can watch this online. >> you are watching the tv on c-span2, television for serious readers which is our primetime lineup, and adams argue the beats in new york and hollywood are trying to bring down donald trump.
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>> that is tonight on c-span2's booktv, 48 hours partisan
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books, television for serious readers. >> the citizen clan claimed to be continuing the first clan. a series of major ways, it was not secret. it was a mass movement saying you have 5 million members. third, women forced - in maine, nonviolence. basic strategy was almost oral and i could talk about that later and finally the most important thing expanded the hate list, the first clan was entirely focused on keeping
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african-americans down and used lynching to not only punish individuals but to intimidate the whole population. the second klan understanding its founders, that you would get a lot of traction by concentrating only on african-americans because in 1920 very few african-americans in the northern states, expanded their list to catholics and jews, immigrants, the same category to the ways of immigration that had grown larger from 1880 very few immigrants were protestant. when they said catholics the russian and greek orthodox, they did not register they were different, it was equal opportunity bias. >> i would add one more thing,
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organizationally, this was a for-profit business, entrepreneurial, this is one of the reasons you tell the story of this one guy creating a second ku klux klan, and public relations agent and modern sophisticated and and market techniques for who you should be hating and i wrote an article for the bachelor called the long gone and how much right-wing politics devolved into a money hustle, getting terrifying hair on fire letters saying the left wants to teach your children cannibalism, teaches them how to have sex
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and send me $10 to save the world, we know how it works with the internet. it was not that different for the clan which did function in a sense like appear a bit scheme. >> it was a pyramid scheme. a recruiter could keep 40% of the initiation fee. the initiation fee was $10 in 1920 but that is worth over $100 today. it was not cheap. that underlines one important factor low income people were not in the plan. so if i recruit you, you could recruit somebody else and keep 40% and this could keep going until there is no one left to recruit and that is the problem with. schemes. ultimately this was the undoing
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of the clan and couldn't give examples the corruption became too much to ignore, and a lot of clan members, embittered about what was going on. they made the uniform in such a way and difficult to take old sheets. they did this knowingly to make people -- started manufacturing all sorts of things, get a clan pocketknife or brooch for your
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wife, and dollars money completely unaccountable. >> you can watch this and other programs you are watching booktv on c-span2 with top nonfiction books and authors. booktv is television for serious readers. >> this weekend on booktv's afterwards program, and representative trey gowdy discussing friendship and sen. jim dement. and national black writers conference. and political tribalism in america with hillbilly elegy arthur janie vance. norman, oklahoma, to tour the area's literary sites. that is all this weekend on booktv, television for serious
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readers. visit >> every year the center for black literature at medgar evers college in brooklyn host the national black writers conference, a weeklong event focused on expanding the public's understanding of black literature. first up you will hear desire cooper, margo jefferson and andrea ritchie and moderator joseph surette, talking about challenging cultural or political times. >> the theme of this year's conference is gathering up the waters, to present a panel eager to discuss ways literature and poetry face challenges as we open our hearts and minds to healing. at this point i would like to welcome


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