Wednesday, December 3, 2008

Seeing What You Heard

On two separate occasions, I stumbled upon instances where people were initially assessed by their voice, and when the voice did not match the imagined person, rejection followed.

The first instance was when I read a New York Times article "Princeton Honors Ex-Judge Once Turned Away for Race" by Karen W. Arenson. The reporter tells the story of New York Supreme Court Judge Bruce M. Wright who applied and was accepted to Princeton in 1939, but when the young black man arrived on campus to begin school, he was turned away.

The second instance came as I listened to a "Studio 360" interview with the talented Sarah Jones in "Sounding Black." I witnessed, again, a story of a black person being turned away because the voice that was initially heard did not match the person. This fascinating piece is actually an interview between Jones and author John McWhorter discussing his recent book Our Magnificent Bastard Tongue: The Untold Story of English.  Click here to read the NYTimes Review of the book.

1 comment:

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