Reckoning with Racist Violence: Life of a Klansman


Tuesday, November 13, 2018


6:00 pm


Rockefeller Hall 200-Auditorium

Edward Ball, author of National Book Award winning "Slaves in the Family".

In a talk that is part history, part family memoir, writer Edward Ball tells the story of his great-grandfather in New Orleans, a carpenter and plain Southerner, neither prominent nor well documented, who becomes a marauder in the Ku Klux Klan. Edward Ball uses the life of a white supremacist from his own family tree to explore the birth and spread of whiteness as a force in American politics and asks whether the klansman’s journey is always a criminal exception or a path in the development of white identity.

Edward Ball is a writer of nonfiction with five books of history and biography, including Slaves in the Family, an account of his family’s 170-year history as slaveholders in South Carolina, and The Inventor and the Tycoon, about the birth of moving pictures in California. Ball’s current project is the story of a fighter in the Ku Klux Klan, a member of the author’s family in Louisiana, a book that will examine the life of a single white supremacist. Edward Ball was born in Georgia, raised in Louisiana and South Carolina, and attended Brown University. Winner of the National Book Award for Slaves in the Family, Ball has taught at Yale University, received a Cullman Fellowship from the New York Public Library, and has been a fellow at the Radcliffe Institute for Advanced Study, at Harvard.

Sponsored by the Political Science Department.

Beth Mccormick

Political Science Department