In Argentine tango, the steps that dancers perform - and even the shoes that they wear - tell a certain story about the correct role of men and women in the dance. In her recently released book How Americans Make Race: Stories, Institutions, Spaces, Clarissa Rile Hayward argues that racial identities are formed in much the same way. Whether looking at the 1920s or 2013, people's behavior and attitudes toward race are often influenced by factors beyond their own experience and control. Hayward tracks this phenomenon, introduces the ideas of 'institutionalization' and 'objectification," and reveals why some stories about race are more influential than others.
November 6, 2013