September 18, 2015

Passing Thoughts

In my neighborhood to be Irish-American was to be whiter than any Italian-American. Whether there was a hierarchy of whiter whites than Irish whites was really of no concern as long as it was recognized that Irish was essentially whiter than Italian, in this view.

I'm thinking in his time Will Rogers wasn't white at all except by general acclaim, and despite all appearances. But then it's always been defined by general acclaim, white being a slippery notion, the precise white being applied or denied in the instant a matter of exacting public judgements, which fell in favor of Rogers back then.

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