In conversation with Pulitzer Prize-winning writer Isabel Wilkerson


Oct. 25 2020, Published 8:00 p.m. ET

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While working on her Pulitzer Prize-winning book, The Warmth of Other Suns, about the Jim Crow-era great migration of African Americans out of the South, Wilkerson realised that she was studying a deeply ingrained caste system.

Her new book, Caste, argues that we can’t understand current political upheavals without addressing the system of divisions that are the founding stones of American society. Drawing comparisons with two of the best known caste systems in the world - that of India and Nazi Germany - she shows how the “unseen hierarchies” of today are formed by the institutionalised inequality and injustices of the past, and that by illuminating how that works, we can work to dismantle it.

Wilkerson won the Pulitzer prize for her first book. Caste has been described by the New York Times as “an instant American classic” and was selected for Oprah’s book club.

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