Race: The Power of an Illusion

A three-part PBS documentary about race in society, science, and history.

Dates: Aug. 19, Aug. 26, Sept. 9
Time: 7:00 p.m. each evening
Location : Culpeper Baptist Church, Room 313
318 S. West Street, Culpeper
Sponsor: Piedmont Race Amity Alliance

This three-hour,  three-part documentary questions the very idea of race as biology. Scientists tell us that believing in biological races is no more sound than believing that the sun revolves around the earth. So if race is a biological myth, where did the idea come from? And why should it matter today? The series provides an eye-opening discussion tool to help people examine their beliefs about race, privilege, policy, and justice.

Episode I, “The Difference Between Us,” examines how recent scientific discoveries have toppled the concept of biological race.

Episode II, “The Story We Tell,” uncovers the roots of the race concept, including the 19th-century science that legitimated it and the hold it has gained over our minds.

Episode III, “The House We Live In,” focuses not on individual behaviors and attitudes but on how our institutions shape and create race, giving different groups vastly unequal life chances. (Excerpt from Culpeper Persisters e-mail.)

From Terry Anderson, OCDC Committee Chairman: “I used this documentary in my diversity classes at several major universities. It’s worth seeing all three parts, but each part can be viewed alone. … Much food for thought, and my students found it both interesting and informative.”