Not So Black and White: A History of Race from White Supremacy to Identity Politics

Wednesday 6 December

Writer and broadcaster Kenan Malik upends assumptions underlying today’s debates around race, culture, whiteness and privilege by explaining the real origins of race in western thought.


Malik traces the idea of race back to the Enlightenment. He asks whether white privilege is real, how racist the working class is, why left-wing antisemitism has grown and who benefits most when anti-racists speak in racial terms. Malik challenges received wisdom, uncovers the forgotten history of a racialised working class and questions fashionable concepts such as cultural appropriation.

Malik is a writer, lecturer, broadcaster and columnist for the Observer. He is a former panellist on Moral Maze and has presented BBC Radio 3’s Nightwaves and Radio 4’s Analysis. His books include The Quest for a Moral Compass and From Fatwa to Jihad, which was shortlisted for the Orwell Prize.

This lecture forms part of Liverpool Hope University’s Distinguished Lecture Series 2023/24. Refreshments will be served from 5pm before the lecture begins at 5.30pm.

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