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Kenneth ClarkKenneth Clark
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programs of arts and crafts, and other things, that I found interesting.

And one of the teachers in charge of this summer program was a woman who was a medical student in Howard University.. She was very attractive, and I admired her, respected her, and had a sort of a semi-crush on her. She would tell me about Howard University.

I remember one of the things that she said that stood in my mind was that it was headed by blacks, and I don't think the word “black” was used at that time, but that the President was a Negro and the Deans were --

And this seemed very strange to me, you know. Fascinating. I'd grown up in New York, and up until junior high school, I'd only seen one black teacher, Buford Delaney. In junior high school, I had a number of black teachers. The Spanish teacher was black. My music teacher, Mr. Dixon, who was not only a music teacher but he was also director of the orchestra, and he was speech. The first talk I ever gave, Mr. Dixon had us give three minute talks, and after my first three minute talk, Mr. Dixon was very encouraging.

I had about three or four black teachers in junior high school, most of whom I respected. In fact, there was only one of them who I thought was not particularly adequate. He was too easy. I don't even remember what he taught. But the others were good teachers, and they were encouraging, or at least they encouraged me.

But it was clear to me that they were not in any position of authority or power, that the principal was white, and -- I just sort of assumed that authority positions were reserved for whites. And that certainly was clear when I went to George Washington High School.

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