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Taking Down the Flag Is Just a Start: Toward the Memory-Work of Racial Reconciliation in White Supremacist America

Taking Down the Flag Is Just a Start: Toward the Memory-Work of Racial Reconciliation in White... SPECIAL FORuM ON ThE ChARLESTON MASSACRE OF 2015 Taking down the Flag Is Just a Start Toward the Memory-Work of Racial Reconciliation in White Supremacist America JOShuA F.J. INWOOd University of Tennessee Knoxville dEREK ALdERMAN University of Tennessee Knoxville On 17 June 2015 Dylann Roof, a selfavowed white supremacist, walked into Emanuel African Methodist Episcopal Church and sat down for a Bible study. After spending forty-five minutes attending the service, he pulled a Glock 41 .45 caliber handgun from his backpack and opened fire, killing nine people. Roof then fled and was ultimately arrested twenty-four hours later in North Carolina. Of the nine killed the oldest was 87 year old Susie Jackson, and the youngest was 26 year old Tywanza Sanders. After his arrest Roof claimed that he assassinated the members of Emanuel AME Church in the hopes of igniting a broader race war. Indeed, photographs later emerged and went viral of Roof engaged in racist exhibitions and hate speech in the past, in particular the flying of the controversial and insensitive Confederate battle flag. In the aftermath of the Charleston massacre, we saw renewed efforts to remove Confederate symbols from across the South's public spaces, with South http://www.deepdyve.com/assets/images/DeepDyve-Logo-lg.png Southeastern Geographer University of North Carolina Press

Taking Down the Flag Is Just a Start: Toward the Memory-Work of Racial Reconciliation in White Supremacist America

Southeastern Geographer , Volume 56 (1) – Mar 18, 2016

Taking Down the Flag Is Just a Start: Toward the Memory-Work of Racial Reconciliation in White Supremacist America


SPECIAL FORuM ON ThE ChARLESTON MASSACRE OF 2015 Taking down the Flag Is Just a Start Toward the Memory-Work of Racial Reconciliation in White Supremacist America JOShuA F.J. INWOOd University of Tennessee Knoxville dEREK ALdERMAN University of Tennessee Knoxville On 17 June 2015 Dylann Roof, a selfavowed white supremacist, walked into Emanuel African Methodist Episcopal Church and sat down for a Bible study. After spending forty-five minutes attending the service, he pulled a Glock 41 .45 caliber handgun from his backpack and opened fire, killing nine people. Roof then fled and was ultimately arrested twenty-four hours later in North Carolina. Of the nine killed the oldest was 87 year old Susie Jackson, and the youngest was 26 year old Tywanza Sanders. After his arrest Roof claimed that he assassinated the members of Emanuel AME Church in the hopes of igniting a broader race war. Indeed, photographs later emerged and went viral of Roof engaged in racist exhibitions and hate speech in the past, in particular the flying of the controversial and insensitive Confederate battle flag. In the aftermath of the Charleston massacre, we saw renewed efforts to remove Confederate symbols from across the South's public spaces, with South Carolina legislators finally voting to remove the flag from the state capitol grounds. In addition, the nation witnessed the grace of survivors in forgiving Roof. These were meaningful and symbolic steps that, thankfully, had the opposite effect than the one the white supremacist shooter had intended. While it is undeniably tragic that nine innocent people had to die before political leaders realized what many African Americans have known and lived with for generations, it is also indicative of a nation that whitewashes the connections between the material realities of white supremacy and its grounding in historical memory. The Confederate flag is a highly charged reminder of legacies of racism that have long been employed by racists to...
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Publisher
University of North Carolina Press
Copyright
Copyright © The Southeastern Division, Association of American Geographers.
ISSN
1549-6929
Publisher site
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Abstract

SPECIAL FORuM ON ThE ChARLESTON MASSACRE OF 2015 Taking down the Flag Is Just a Start Toward the Memory-Work of Racial Reconciliation in White Supremacist America JOShuA F.J. INWOOd University of Tennessee Knoxville dEREK ALdERMAN University of Tennessee Knoxville On 17 June 2015 Dylann Roof, a selfavowed white supremacist, walked into Emanuel African Methodist Episcopal Church and sat down for a Bible study. After spending forty-five minutes attending the service, he pulled a Glock 41 .45 caliber handgun from his backpack and opened fire, killing nine people. Roof then fled and was ultimately arrested twenty-four hours later in North Carolina. Of the nine killed the oldest was 87 year old Susie Jackson, and the youngest was 26 year old Tywanza Sanders. After his arrest Roof claimed that he assassinated the members of Emanuel AME Church in the hopes of igniting a broader race war. Indeed, photographs later emerged and went viral of Roof engaged in racist exhibitions and hate speech in the past, in particular the flying of the controversial and insensitive Confederate battle flag. In the aftermath of the Charleston massacre, we saw renewed efforts to remove Confederate symbols from across the South's public spaces, with South

Journal

Southeastern GeographerUniversity of North Carolina Press

Published: Mar 18, 2016

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