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The Sound of Ideas

Let’s Talk About Race: Overcoming Barriers in Education, Friendship and Democracy

Posted Friday, September 21, 2007

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The topic is taboo ... yet it divides Cleveland right down the middle. When the four-letter word is mentioned, people cringe. Can we talk about race? Beverly Daniel Tatum, president of Spelman College, believes it's time for just that sort of conversation. She joins us to discuss her new book, the effect of racial stereotypes on achievement, and the silence that prevents interracial friendship. How does a town like Cleveland come together? We'll explore these issues and more Friday morning at nine on the Sound of Ideas. Photo: Jill Levy, Lee Owen, and Sandra Driggins of Ludlow Elementary School in Shaker Heights, Ohio, shaking hands in front of a sign for Brotherhood Week in 1956. National Brotherhood Week, which promotes racial and religious tolerance, was first observed in 1931. Photo courtesy of the Shaker Heights Public Library. Inset: Beverly Daniel Tatum's book.



Beverly Daniel Tatum, President of Spelman College in Atlanta; author of "Can We Talk About Race?" and "Why Are All the Black Kids Sitting Together in the Cafeteria?"
Vilma Seeberg, Associate Professor, College of Education, Kent State University
Elizabeth Robenalt, Facilitator of book dialogues on race, Ursuline College

Additional Information

Hear Tatum at the City Club
Rich, Black, Flunking - an article in the East Bay Express describes Berkeley Anthropologist John Ogbu's research on the racial achievement gap.
The achievment trap: A study on the relationship between achievment and income

About the book:
In four chapters, Tatum—who is a widely read expert on racial identity and identity development—addresses some of the thorniest issues concerning education and race, including the return to school segregation and the implications for students of color, how conceptions of race, intelligence, testing, and expectations affect student performance, the promise and complicated dynamics of cross-racial friendships, and the role of higher education in bridging racial divides and cultivating leaders who will further the democratic goals of a multiracial society.

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Every weekday at 9:00 AM (EST), The Sound of Ideas reports the news, explains the news, and sometimes makes news. The Cleveland Press Club awarded it “Best Radio Show” in Ohio and thousands daily find it to be an indispensable source of information about what’s most important to Northeast Ohioans.

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Funding for Ideas/Sound of Ideas comes from The George Gund Foundation, The Cleveland Foundation, Eaton, the George W. Codrington Charitable Foundation, The Robert O. and Annamae Orr Family Foundation, and the Nord Family Foundation.