THIS STORY HAS BEEN FORMATTED FOR EASY PRINTING
THE FIND

Examining race relations in the White House

By Jan Gardner
Globe Correspondent / January 23, 2011

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The White House was built with slave labor and at least six US presidents owned slaves during their time in office. With these facts, Clarence Lusane, a political science professor at American University, opens “The Black History of the White House’’ (City Lights), a fascinating story of race relations that plays out both on the domestic front and the international stage. As Lusane writes, “The Lincoln White House resolved the issue of slavery, but not that of racism.” Along with the political calculations surrounding who gets invited to the White House are matters of musical tastes and opinionated first ladies, ingredients that make for good storytelling.