STATE OF THE NATION – Part 2: A Five-part colloquium series presented by the Office of Population Research

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The COVID-19 pandemic threw the world into paralysis, exposing weaknesses in public health policies, and revealing large inequalities of class, race, and gender.  In the United States the crisis was compounded by nation-wide demonstrations in support of racial justice following the murder of George Floyd. Among those most affected by police violence, Coronavirus infection, and subsequent death are black, brown, and indigenous people who are also overrepresented among the poor and afflicted.  Nearly 50 percent of those who have died as a result of COVID-19 contagion are people of color. 

In light of such momentous developments, Princeton’s Office of Population Research presents a five-part series of conversations and debate focusing on the state of critical national groups: African Americas, Hispanic Americans, Asian Americans, and Native Americans.  The purpose of the series is to illuminate the conditions surrounding vulnerable citizens and residents. 

An introductory session covering top findings about the groups under scrutiny will be followed by sessions more deliberately focusing on four distinct populations.  Each panel will feature three speakers and one respondent. They will deliver short remarks followed by interchange among themselves and dialogue with those attending the event.  The sessions will be recorded and available on this website. 

Part 1:  American Inequality In The Age of the Pandemic

Part 2:  The State of Black America

Part 3:  The State of Hispanic America

Part 4: The State of Asian Americans

Part 5: The State of Native Americans


Frederick Wherry, Townsend Martin, Class of 1917 Professor of Sociology, Princeton University

Keeanga-Yamahtta Taylor, Assistant Professor of African-American Studies, Princeton University

Patrick Sharkey, Professor of Sociology and Public Affairs, Princeton University

Kathryn Edin, Willian Church Osborn Professor of Sociology and Public Affairs, Princeton University

Moderator and Discussant:

Ta-Nehisi Coates, Author, Journalist, Screenwriter, Executive Producer and Professor He is the author of the bestselling books The Beautiful Struggle, We Were Eight Years in Power, The Water Dancer, and Between the World and Me
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