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Time and again, the route to upward mobility in American society has been blocked for African Americans. Consider the GI Bill, which provided college education and housing benefits for veterans after World War II. The GI Bill was a conveyor belt into the middle class for millions of white WWII veterans, but many African American veterans were excluded. Subsequent generations continue to feel the effects. Join us to learn more about the GI Bill and educational equity in this podcast episode.

The Ways & Means podcast series “The Arc of Justice – From Here to Equality” is inspired by the research of economist William A. “Sandy” Darity Jr. Darity is the Samuel DuBois Cook Distinguished Professor of Public Policy at Duke University’s Sanford School of Public Policy. With folklorist and arts consultant A. Kirsten Mullen, he wrote the award-winning book “From Here to Equality: Reparations for Black Americans in the 21st Century.”

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Ways & Means podcast: Whitening the Middle Class



Theme music by David Schulman. Original music for this episode was produced by youth in Durham, N.C., in collaboration with BlackSpace and Only US. The series features the work of King Shaun, Lil Monsta, Jamm, Areon Rem, Zone, The Beast and Pierce Freelon.

Additional original music for this episode was produced by Solomon Fox, appearing courtesy of Forging The Musical Future [FTMF Talent].


Special thanks to Gene Burnett (read more about Gene and Levittown), professors Deondra Rose and Adriane Lentz-Smith. Also thanks to Olivia Winslow and Rachelle Blidner.

The Arc of Justice: From Here to Equality” is produced in partnership with North Carolina Public Radio WUNC. It is made possible through support from the Duke Office for Faculty Advancement thanks to funding from The Duke Endowment.