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Randall Kennedy, The Ebb and Flow of Racial Progress, Am. Prospect, Dec. 3, 2020.

Abstract: Caste: The Origins of Our Discontents By Isabel Wilkerson Random House Late in her book Caste: The Origins of Our Discontents, Isabel Wilkerson recounts a conversation in 2018 with fellow journalist Taylor Branch on the state of race relations in America. The outcome of the 2020 presidential election offers an ambiguous answer. [...]the Trumpist Republican Party gained seats in the House of Representatives and seems likely to hold on to its majority in the Senate. [...]there exists a library of books exposing the centrality of racial slavery, the betrayal of Reconstruction, the depredations of Jim Crow segregation, the resistance to the civil rights movement, and the persistence of the race line. The offense she mines most deeply is slavery, noting that "[t]he vast majority of African-Americans who lived in this land in the first 246 years of what is now the United States lived under the terror of people who had absolute power over their bodies and their very breath, subject to people who faced no sanction for any atrocity they could conjure."