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Oprah Winfrey and author Isabel Wilkerson, take listeners through the 8 Pillars of Caste, featured in the Oprah’s Book Club selection "Caste: The Origins of our Discontents."

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Oprah Winfrey and author Isabel Wilkerson, take listeners through the 8 Pillars of Caste, featured in the Oprah’s Book Club selection "Caste: The Origins of our Discontents."
Caste: Isabel Wilkerson

Caste: Isabel Wilkerson

2020-09-0836:013

The premiere episode of Oprah’s eight-part conversation with Pulitzer Prize-winning writer Isabel Wilkerson on her latest work and Oprah’s Book Club selection, Caste: The Origins of our Discontents. Oprah and Isabel discuss what called her to write Caste, how society needs a new way to talk about racism and why Oprah says Caste is one of the most profound books she’s ever read.
Caste: Pillar One

Caste: Pillar One

2020-09-1033:502

Oprah and Pulitzer Prize-winning writer Isabel Wilkerson discuss her newest work and Oprah’s Book Club pick, Caste: The Origins of our Discontents. In episode one of the eight part series, Oprah and Isabel consider the first pillar of Caste as outlined in the book, "Divine Will and the Laws of Nature.” Seventeen readers from all walks of life join in the discussion as Isabel answers questions about how God and religion were used to justify the caste system in the United States.
Caste: Pillar Two

Caste: Pillar Two

2020-09-1535:35

Part two of Oprah’s discussion with Pulitzer Prize-winning writer Isabel Wilkerson and readers about the book, Caste: The Origins of our Discontents. The second episode in the eight-part series focuses on the second pillar of Caste, “Heritability”; the idea that permanent rank in society is inherited and passed down through ancestry. Special guest Academy Award winning actor Forest Whitaker joins the conversation. Oprah and Isabel respond to questions and comments from readers on the second pillar. 
Caste: Pillar Three

Caste: Pillar Three

2020-09-1730:15

Part three of Oprah’s discussion with Pulitzer Prize-winning writer Isabel Wilkerson and readers of the book, Caste: The Origins of our Discontents. The third episode in the eight-part series focuses on the third pillar of Caste, "Endogamy and the Control of Marriage and Mating." Isabel explores America’s violent history of keeping romantic relationships and family systems within the confines of a given caste as a means of control. We hear questions and an emotional story from a mixed-race couple who faced great adversity when they were married in 1966.
Caste: Pillar Four

Caste: Pillar Four

2020-09-2251:39

Part four of Oprah’s discussion with Pulitzer Prize-winning writer Isabel Wilkerson and readers of the book, Caste: The Origins of our Discontents. The fourth episode in the eight-part series focuses on the fourth pillar of Caste, “Purity Versus Pollution.” Isabel explains how the caste system keeps groups separate for the protection of the “purity” of the dominant caste against the pollution of the “subordinate” caste. Oprah, Isabel and guests talk about the heartbreaking story of Al Bright, a nine year old Black child who was shamed when barred from sharing a pool with his little league baseball teammates 1951. We’ll hear from one of Al’s best friends who knew him at the time of the incident.
Caste: Pillar Five

Caste: Pillar Five

2020-09-2436:06

Part five of Oprah’s discussion with Pulitzer Prize-winning writer Isabel Wilkerson and readers of the book, Caste: The Origins of our Discontents. The fifth episode in the eight-part series focuses on the fifth pillar of Caste, “Occupational Hierarchy.” Isabel explores how the subordinate caste are often relegated to menial forms of labor, which further cements their place in the bottom rung of society in the eyes of the dominant caste. We’ll hear from an executive from a major tech company, a manager who is in charge of recruiting new employees and a high school principal.
Caste: Pillars 6 & 7

Caste: Pillars 6 & 7

2020-09-2930:57

Part six of Oprah’s discussion with Pulitzer Prize-winning writer Isabel Wilkerson and readers of the book, Caste: The Origins of our Discontents. The sixth episode in the eight-part series focuses on the sixth pillar of Caste, “Dehumanization and Stigma” and the seventh pillar, “Terror as Enforcement, Cruelty as a Means of Control.”  Isabel explains how dehumanization is the fundamental leveler that allows everything else in the caste system to occur. Plus, how terror through lynching and brutality has been and continues to be used to keep the subordinate caste in its place. Melba Patillo Beals, one of the original Little Rock Nine school children who integrated the very first high school in Arkansas in 1957, recounts the horrific details of a lynching she witnessed when she was five years old.
Caste: Pillar 8

Caste: Pillar 8

2020-10-0149:05

Part seven of Oprah’s discussion with Pulitzer Prize-winning writer Isabel Wilkerson and readers of the book, Caste: The Origins of our Discontents. The penultimate episode in the eight-part series focuses on the eighth and final pillar of Caste, "Inherent Superiority Versus Inherent Inferiority” which describes how the dominant caste were conditioned to believe that one group is superior and inherently deserving of the best in a given society. Isabel also explores why the dominant cast believes those deemed lowest are deserving of their plight.  David Holt, mayor of Oklahoma City, joins Oprah, Isabel and other guests to discuss how the caste system has impacted his city. 
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