White Students Burned A Latina Author’s Book | Racism At Its Peak
Yes, this happened in the 21st century. Recently, a Latina professor, journalist and author Jennine Capó Crucet attended Georgia Southern University. She was there to discuss her 2015 book Make Your Home Among Strangers. The story revolves around a Cuban American girl who struggles to adapt to the privileged and predominantly white college of New York. The students attending the lecture didn’t appreciate being bullied for being white, so they ended up burning her book.
Latina Author Speaks To An Audience to Discuss White Privilege
At Georgina Southern University, the book Make Your Home Among Strangers, was part of the mandatory course for first-year students. This Wednesday, the university brought her to speak to the whole first-year class. When Crucet opened the floor for questions, the attendees felt that she was criticizing white people too much. The university is pre-dominantly white, with almost 63% of the students.
According to the school’s paper, one student said this to Jennine Capó Crucet:
I noticed that you made a lot of generalizations about the majority of white people being privileged. What makes you believe that it’s okay to come to a college campus, like this, when we are supposed to be promoting diversity on this campus, which is what we’re taught. I don’t understand what the purpose of this was.
The Latina author responded that she was there because she was invited to be a speaker at the university to discuss white privilege. Moreover, referring to white privilege she said this:
It’s a real thing that you are actually benefiting from right now in even asking this question.
White Students Felt Attacked
The white students attending the lecture spoke to Buzzfeed and expressed that they felt that their race was being attacked by Jennine Capó Crucet. They said that Crucet made several generalizations regarding the white race.
One of the students said this:
She came to our school and, the audience was predominantly white, and she came in and was attacking white people for an hour, putting all these stereotypes and generalizations on us. Like all white people are privileged and racist.
One major point where the audience reacted the most was when Crucet stated that white people shouldn’t be on the authority positions because 2/3 people in high positions should not be white.
One of the students even said that while he agreed with the fact that white privilege exists, the way Crucet discussed it was not appreciated:
She wanted everyone to be equal and says she is against racism but she was shitting on white people the whole time. I can understand the message she was trying to get out but I don’t know what reaction she was expecting when she comes to a school that’s 75% white. I agree there is such a thing as white privilege but the way she was saying it was not OK to our student body.
White Students Burn Jennine Capó Crucet’s Books
The students could have simply disagreed with Crucet’s way of doing things, but they fueled the problem even further. They ended up burning copies of her book Make Your Home a Better Place.
The Department of the chair for the university made a statement about the incident:
Last night’s discussion with the author devolved into accusations of her demonstrating racism against white people. Some students burned copies of Crucet’s book and even gathered outside her hotel. We assert that destructive and threatening acts do not reflect the values of Georgia Southern University.
One of the students tweeted about it as well:
so after our FYE book’s author came to my school to talk about it… these people decide to burn her book because “it’s bad and that race is bad to talk about”. white people need to realize that they are the problem and that their privilege is toxic. author is a woman of color. pic.twitter.com/HiX4lGT7Ci
— elaina⭐️ (@elainaaan) October 10, 2019
The author has not made an official statement on the matter but she has voiced her opinion on it on Twitter:
— Jennine Capó Crucet (@crucet) October 10, 2019
Some Students Defended Jennine Capó Crucet
Though, Crucet did mention that some of the students were not defensive or aggressive:
Also want to say: I met some very amazing, brilliant students at @GeorgiaSouthern tonight. Many of them were the ones disrupting the aggressive & ignorant comments during the Q&A. At the signing, we hugged & cried. I‘m happy to know them and also legit worried for their safety.
— Jennine Capó Crucet (@crucet) October 10, 2019
Come to Georgia Southwestern next time I promise we will have more intelligent and positive questions because our faculty doesn’t tolerate that kind of foolery https://t.co/5kd5PNEljf
— jaila🎄 (@jailawestbrook) October 10, 2019
The university condemns the actions of the students but they are not going to punish them for it.
Crucet’s book is available to purchase here.