65 Min Released Jan 15, 2016

Color Lines: Racial Passing In America

On this episode of BackStory, the Guys will consider how and why Americans throughout the centuries have crossed the lines of racial identity, and find out what the history of passing has to say about race, identity, and privilege in America. We’ll look at stories of African-Americans who passed as white to escape slavery or Jim Crow and find out how the “one-drop rule” enabled one blonde-haired, blue-eyed American to live a double life without ever arousing suspicion. We'll also explore the story of an African-American musician who pioneered a genre of exotic music with a bejeweled turban and an invented biography, and examine the hidden costs of crossing over.

CORRECTION: This show includes a story about Sylvester Long, a man of mixed descent who styled himself as a pure-blooded Native American named Chief Buffalo Child Long Lance. We refer to him as a movie star who published a famous autobiography. In fact, Long Lance published his autobiography first—the popularity of the book catapulted him into movie stardom.

BackStory

BackStory

The American History Podcast

Go To Show Page

More Episodes

Cuffing SZN

Speed Dial

This week:- Ira and Doreen discuss the pros and …

30 Min

Sep 8, 2016

SVU #88: Winter Sleep / Hotel Movies

Filmspotting: Streaming Video Unit (SVU)

The calendar may say summer but Matt and Alison are bundling up for the latest episode of SVU, where they travel to the snowy peaks of Anatolia for a discussion of Nuri Bilge Ceylan's Palme d'Or-winning film WINTER SLEEP. Plus they recommend some other mo

81 Min

Jun 23, 2015