Episode 1 of 3
Ekow Eshun is a writer and a curator of art exhibitions. He looks at the images and ideas that we use to build our view of the world – and, as a black person living in a mainly white society, he’s been thinking about race all his life. In this series, he’s on a personal journey to explore what he believes could be one of the most influential and elusive ideas of the modern age – whiteness.
In this first episode, Ekow goes in search of the origins of whiteness with help from his friend, the artist Grayson Perry. He looks at art and literature and science. He speaks to the geneticist Adam Rutherford and discovers that our ideas of race came from one of the founding fathers of modern science.
Ekow also travels back to 17th century Barbados to trace the legal origins of white supremacy.
Producer: Philly Beaumont
Executive Producer: John Shields
A Loftus Media production for Radio 4