Further Afield

Further Afield Illustration
Williams professors in the news

Blacks were taught in their homes, churches and schools how to handle discrimination from whites—“how they had to be quiet, how to talk back with their eyes, how to resist or to fight back without actually raising a hand or raising their voices,” history professor Leslie Brown says in a Nov. 25 National Public Radio interview discussing her work on Duke University’s “Behind the Veil,” considered the world’s largest collection of Jim Crow-era oral histories. Meanwhile, Brown’s book Living with Jim Crow: African American Women and Memories of the Segregated South won the 2011 Oral History Association biennial book award in October.

“Rather than trying to attract the very rich, it might be more helpful to encourage middle class families to move to a poor neighborhood and hope that genuine social interaction and sustainable integration occurs,” says economics professor Tara Watson in a Nov. 22 Kansas City Star article about the push for gentrification by Cincinnati city leaders.

Powerful storm waves, not tsunamis triggered by earthquakes, are the likely explanation behind the inland movement of massive boulders along the rugged coast of Ireland’s Aran Islands, geosciences professor Ronadh Cox says in an MSNBC interview on Nov. 8. “The waves can just climb these cliffs in amazing ways.”

In a Sept. 21 Columbia Journalism Review article about how audience reaction distorts political debates, psychology professor Steven Fein says cheers, applause and other favorable responses “can suggest to the audience [watching at home] that there is much more consensus about a particular point than there really is.”

IMAGE CREDIT: Illustration by Robbi Behr ’97