Jennifer Hochschild to give Phi Beta Kappa lecture: “Here they treat us like a different race"

Jennifer Hochschild

Immediate past president of the American Political Science Association, Jennifer Hochschild is Henry LaBarre Jayne Professor of Government and professor of African and African American Studies at Harvard. Her talk at Sewanee—“Here they treat us like a different race:" Political Implications of Class-in-Race Inequality—will investigate the possibility of the recent marked growth of inequality within non-white groups changing their political or policy views. The lecture, which is open to the public, will be held at 4:30 p.m. Thursday, Oct. 27, in Blackman Auditorium.

Whites in the United States have shown class divisions in politics for centuries, while since the 1960s Asian Americans, Latinos, and especially blacks have generally expressed liberal policy preferences and Democratic Party support regardless of their class position. Hochschild will demonstrate recent growth in class disparities within the four main conventional American racial or ethnic groups, including increasingly different lived experiences in each group, and will show how this growing inequality is reflected in attitudes and preferences. As a result, economic liberalism and social liberalism may be diverging among nonwhites for the first time in American history. She will include case studies in which these results are borne out by political and policy disputes on the ground. 

During her two-day visit to campus, Hochschild also will visit classes, participate in a student dialogue on race and immigration, and hold a discussion with Politics majors about careers.

Hochschild’s research and teaching center on the intersection of American politics and political philosophy, particularly in the areas of race, ethnicity, and immigration, and on the developing politics and ideologies around the societal use of genomic science. She is also conducting research on policy disputes within American racial and ethnic groups.

She is the author or coauthor of several books, including Do Facts Matter? Information and Misinformation in American Politics (with Katherine Levine Einstein); Creating a New Racial Order: How Immigration, Multiracialism, Genomics, and the Young Can Remake Race in America (with Vesla Weaver and Traci Burch); and The American Dream and the Public Schools (with Nathan Scovronick). Hochschild is a fellow of the American Academy of Arts and Sciences and founding editor of Perspectives on Politics (APSA).

Since 1956, the Phi Beta Kappa Society’s Visiting Scholar Program has been offering undergraduates the opportunity to spend time with some of America’s most distinguished scholars. The purpose of the program is to contribute to the intellectual life of the institution by making possible an exchange of ideas between the Visiting Scholars and the resident faculty and students. The 15 men and women participating during 2016-2017 will visit 110 colleges and universities with chapters of Phi Beta Kappa, spending two days on each campus and taking full part in the academic life of the institution.

Blackman Auditorium (in Woods Labs)