April 18: Who We Be: A Discussion on the Resurrection of Multiculturalism with Jeff Chang and Kiese Laymon


Laymon_headshot_b&wOne of the most surreal images of post-Obama America has to be Jay-Z, a former drug dealer turned record executive from Bed-Stuy’s Marcy Projects, taking a seat with his wife BeyoncĂ© among a sea of white-haired men to witness the second swearing-in ceremony of the current president.

Also in attendance that cold January morning was Medger Evers’s widow, Myrlie Evers-Williams, to offer the invocation, Richard Blanco to reach an inaugural poem (the first Latino, first self-identified LGBTQ person, and first immigrant to do so), and Supreme Court Justice Sonia Sotomayor to administer the oath of office.

Had we finally arrived? And what did this all mean for understanding of race and power in the US, which we’ve all been told, will soon be a majority-minority nation?

206284_10471921683_5708_nIn Who We Be: The Colorization of America, Jeff Chang carefully analyzes the gaps between what we see and what we think, asking us to consider how multiculturalists did, in fact, win the culture wars, and exploring why, despite the change in our visual culture and the proliferation of representations of people of color (a process Chang so aptly describes as “colorization”), do we still not have frank conversations about race?

Thursday, April 18, 2013
6:30 - 8:30 pm

NYU Global Center, Grand Hall   
238 Thompson Street

Chang will be introduced by DJ Rekha and joined in conversation by Kiese Laymon, author of Long Division and How To Slowly Kill Yourself and Others in America, about the post-civil rights movement, the paradox of the post-racial, and the implications of the rapidly changing national demographics on culture and politics. Please RSVP by Tuesday, April 16, 2013 using the form below. Reservations are also accepted via phone (212.992.9653).