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Basic Black; Conversation With Professor Randall Kennedy


CC Master A Conversation with Randall Kennedy Show #3915 Tape Date: 2/14/08 Broadcast Date: 2/28/08 Producer Valerie Linson Length: 26:46

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Basic Black
Conversation With Professor Randall Kennedy
Program Number


Series Description

THe series was formerly known as Say Brother. Series title change as of 1/8/1998. This series is black produced and is one of public television's longest-running series that is rooted in and reflects the culture, concerns, achievements and history of people of African descent. Also includes controversial issues, African American artists, and events of special interest to the African American community.

Series release date: 1/8/1998

Program Description

Black people who have attained success in multiracial America are vulnerable to being branded as sellouts, says Randall Kennedy, professor of law at Harvard University and the author of Sellout: The Politics of Racial Betrayal. They are viewed with mistrust, fear, or even vitriol. He finds common suspicions of those presumed to be selling out: "Have they played ball with the Man to get into the position they're in? Or why have white folks allowed this person to be so successful?"

The accusation of race betrayal is damaging and self destructive, Kennedy warns. In this episode of Basic Black, Kennedy discusses with host Kim McLarin how "sellout rhetoric" and its accompanying attitudes "prompt excessive self-censorship, truncate needed debate, and nurture demagoguery."

Asset Type

Broadcast program

Media Type


Social Issues
Race and Ethnicity
Chicago: “Basic Black; Conversation With Professor Randall Kennedy,” 02/14/2008, WGBH Media Library & Archives, accessed March 26, 2019, http://openvault.wgbh.org/catalog/V_4A67A80A8CF54B0C924E6FA640FA2C84.
MLA: “Basic Black; Conversation With Professor Randall Kennedy.” 02/14/2008. WGBH Media Library & Archives. Web. March 26, 2019. <http://openvault.wgbh.org/catalog/V_4A67A80A8CF54B0C924E6FA640FA2C84>.
APA: Basic Black; Conversation With Professor Randall Kennedy. Boston, MA: WGBH Media Library & Archives. Retrieved from http://openvault.wgbh.org/catalog/V_4A67A80A8CF54B0C924E6FA640FA2C84
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