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Anita Hill re-imagines home and the American dream




Larry Mantle in studio with Anita Hill.
Larry Mantle in studio with Anita Hill.
Photo by Karen X. Fritsche

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The topic of sexual harassment became the focus of a national debate on Oct. 11, 1991 as lawyer Anita Hill testified to the Senate Judiciary Committee that she had been sexually harassed by then-Supreme Court nominee Clarence Thomas. The committee and the Senate ultimately decided to confirm and appoint Thomas, who has held the post for the past two decades.

Since then, Hill said she received over 25,000 letters mainly from supporters on what the Thomas hearings meant to them. Her testimony sparked a debate on sexual harassment and gender inequality in the workplace. Her experience and those letters inspired her to write her new book, “Reimagining Equality: Stories of Gender, Race, and Finding Home.”

In her book, she expounds on how much of our access to opportunity is defined by where we live. She says it determines for many people the kind of schools their children will attend and whether or not they will have access to quality, healthy food. In particular, she uses the foreclosure crisis that many Americans have taken a hard-hit from, to call for a new understanding about the importance of home and its place in the "American Dream." She uses various stories to talk about discrimination in predatory lending practices, and how inequality needs to be addressed by the current administration.

WEIGH IN:

How does the subprime mortgage crisis shed light on inequality in America? How has the economic meltdown affected our conception of the "American Dream"? Does the "American Dream" exist for everyone? What does equality mean to you?

Guest:

Anita Hill, author of "Reimagining Equality: Stories of Gender, Race, and Finding Home"; professor of social policy, law, and women's studies at Brandeis University

Professor Hill will be in conversation with KPCC’s Patt Morrison tonight, Thursday, Oct. 27th at 7pm at the Los Angeles Public Library, downtown. More info can be found here.