John Jackson Jr.

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Racial Paranoia
(John L. Jackson)

Dean, University of Pennsylvania’s School of Social Policy & Practice

John L. Jackson, Jr., is Dean of the University of Pennsylvania’s School of Social Policy & Practice. He also is the Richard Perry University Professor of Communication, Africana Studies, and Anthropology in the Standing Faculty of the Annenberg School for Communication and the Standing Faculty of the School of Arts and Sciences. Before coming to Penn, Jackson taught in the Department of Cultural Anthropology at Duke University in Durham, North Carolina, and spent three years as a Junior Fellow at the Harvard University Society of Fellows in Cambridge, Massachusetts. Jackson received his B.A. in Communications (Radio, TV, Film) from Howard University in Washington D.C. and his Ph.D. in Anthropology from Columbia University in New York City. As a filmmaker, Jackson has produced a feature-length fiction film, documentaries, and film-shorts that have screened at film festivals internationally. His research has been funded by the National Science Foundation, the Ford Foundation, Harvard University’s Milton Fund, and the Lilly Endowment (during a year at the National Humanities Center in Research Triangle Park, North Carolina). He has published several books, Harlemworld: Doing Race and Class in Contemporary Black America (University of Chicago Press, 2001), Real Black: Adventures in Racial Sincerity (University of Chicago Press, 2005), Racial Paranoia: The Unintended Consequences of Political Correctness (Basic, 2008), and Thin Description: Ethnography and the African Hebrew Israelites of Jerusalem (Harvard University Press, 2013). His most recent film, co-directed with Deborah Thomas, is Bad Friday: Rastafari After Coral Gardens (Third World Newsreel, 2012).

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