Actresses Louise Beavers (left) and Fredi Washington (right) play black mother Delilah and mixed-race daughter Peola in the 1934 film "Imitation of Life." Peola passes as white to seek advancement in a segregated society.

Actresses Louise Beavers (left) and Fredi Washington (right) play black mother Delilah and mixed-race daughter Peola in the 1934 film "Imitation of Life." Peola passes as white to seek advancement in a segregated society.

A heated debate about race and identity erupted in the wake of news that the president of an NAACP chapter in Spokane, Wash., may be a white woman who has been ‘passing’ as an African-American. We explore the history of racial passing in America.

Guests

  • Marcia Chatelain Assistant Professor, Department of History at Georgetown University; @DrMChatelain

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