Glenn Loury
The Glenn Show
John McWhorter and Vincent Lloyd – Domination and Anti-Blackness

John McWhorter and Vincent Lloyd – Domination and Anti-Blackness


What happens when racial justice advocates eat their own? John and I have a guest this week that found out the hard way. Vincent Lloyd, professor of theology and religious studies at Villanova University, is a serious scholar with a list of publications as long as your arm. He’s also committed to a paradigm of racial justice that John and I frequently critique on this show. But during a 2022 summer seminar he led at the Telluride Association, his students turned against him using the very concepts and ideas that Vincent sought to have them discuss. Because of time constraints, we could not discuss the incident in detail, but Vincent wrote an outstanding piece about it for Compact that deserves your attention.

The three of us spend most of our time together debating the relationship between race and domination in the US. Vincent argues that anti-blackness is very real, and that it’s a central component in American life. He thinks that one of the purposes of the university ought to be to think through anti-black domination and to combat it. John and I, of course, evince skepticism toward claims like this, but as John notes, it’s rare to hear someone who believes what Vincent believes state his position in such a forthright, unaggrieved manner. After Vincent leaves us, I tell John about seeing Ron DeSantis in the flesh, and John reiterates that, while he may not support DeSantis, he thinks there is at least one thing he’s doing that’s good. We trade stories about meeting our fans—and no, they’re not all conservatives—and end by suggesting that Black History Month may not need to exist anymore.

We’re discussing some essential questions on this one, and I hope you’ll get in on the conversation in the comments!

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Featured Content from the Manhattan Institute

Media headlines have proclaimed that over two-thirds of Asian Americans support affirmative action in college admissions. MI's Renu Mukherjee debunks the polling methodology, arguing that survey questions intentionally incline respondents to express support for the controversial admissions policy

0:00 Woke religion or woke cult?

8:59 Does suffering confer authority on the sufferer?

12:47 A world without “anti-black domination”

21:27 Is there an alternative to the criminal justice system?

34:42 Domination and the purpose of the university

42:47 How Vincent’s Telluride Association seminar blew up

50:45 The narrowness of the social justice framework

54:14 Glenn and John’s encounters with fans

59:49 Should Black Studies exist?

Recorded February 19, 2023

Links and Readings

Vincent’s latest book, Black Dignity: The Struggle against Domination

Vincent’s Compact essay, “A Black Professor Trapped in Anti-Racist Hell”

John’s NYT piece, “DeSantis May Have Been Right”


Glenn Loury
The Glenn Show
Race, inequality, and economics in the US and throughout the world from Glenn Loury, Professor of Economics at Brown University and Paulson Senior Fellow at the Manhattan Institute