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Color blind or color silent? The continuing problem of talking about race

Courtesy of Spelman College/J.D. Scott
Dr. Beverly Tatum

In 1997 Dr. Beverly Tatum published her acclaimed book "Why Are All the Black Kids Sitting Together in the Cafeteria? And Other Conversations About Race.” The work explores an enduring American reluctance to acknowledge the realities of racial identity development and racism. For the last 20 years, it has served as a catalyst in efforts to address those realities.

“We learn at a very early age — 4, 5, 6 — that we’re not supposed to talk about race-related matters … My argument is you can’t solve a problem if you can’t talk about it.”

In her wide-ranging career, Dr. Tatum earned a Ph.D. in clinical psychology, developed an influential course in the psychology of racism and served as president of Spelman College for 13 years. She spoke at a Town Hall Seattle event at the Westside School in West Seattle on December 3.

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Year started with KUOW: 2006