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Talk - The 1619 Project: Why the Fuss?
Talk - The 1619 Project: Why the Fuss?

Wed, Mar 06


Oaxaca de Juárez

Talk - The 1619 Project: Why the Fuss?

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Time & Location

Mar 06, 2024, 4:30 PM – 6:00 PM

Oaxaca de Juárez, Calle de José María Pino Suárez 519, RUTA INDEPENDENCIA, Centro, 68000 Oaxaca de Juárez, Oax., Mexico

About the event

The 1619 Project: A New Origin Story began life in 2019 as a magazine supplement to the Sunday New York Times. Conceived and organized by Pulitzer Prize winning Nikole Hanna-Jones, the magazine supplement was revised, expanded, and published as a book in 2021 and has become a best-seller as well as a source of national controversy and conflict. The question is “Why the Fuss?” The 1619 Project proposes that the foundation of the United States occurred, not in 1776 with the Declaration of Independence, but in 1619 when the first ship carrying a cargo of enslaved Africans arrived on the shores of the American continent. Chapter by chapter--written by a variety of scholars, journalists, and writers—The 1619 Project explores how nearly every aspect of American history has been shaped by the labor, expertise, creativity, and struggles of those enslaved Africans and their descendants. On the face of it, this story should be uncontroversial. It is fact, not fiction. But, in fact, one state has passed a law banning the teaching of The 1619 Project in public schools, and many politicians as well as historians and commentators have negatively criticized aspects of the book. As a black PhD art historian, John Hunter will provide an overview of the content of The 1619 Project: A New Origin Story and present his views as to why this book has been both praised and embraced by many, but reviled and rejected by some.

Speaker Bio:

John Hunter is a retired PhD art historian living in Oaxaca for a year with his husband, Dr. Harold Kooden. Formerly an associate dean and professor at Cleveland State University, John taught Italian Renaissance art history from 1982 to 2003. With his husband, they organized in 2015 a Sunday Salon of friends in New York City to discuss the contentious issues of race, racism, and white privilege. This Salon continues to this day on a monthly meeting basis via Zoom with a dedicated group of people—black, white, gay, non-gay, female and male. John is also a self-published writer of four novels about black families and race, and is a visual artist.


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