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avatar for Christopher Parker

Christopher Parker

University of Washington
Professor of Political Science
Professor Christopher Sebastian Parker is an expert on the ways in which race and racism impact Western democracies. In doing so, he challenges conventional explanations for the persistence of racism, while explaining the nature of the movements that have proven capable of making social progress. Parker is a professor of political science at the University of Washington, and is the author of two award-winning books on the intersection of race, democracy, and social movements. His first book, Fighting for Democracy: Black Veterans and the Struggle Against White Supremacy in the Postwar South (Princeton University Press, 2009), won the Ralph J. Bunche Award from the American Political Science Association (APSA) for the best scholarly work in political science that explores the phenomenon of ethnic and cultural pluralism. Dr. Parker’s second book, Change They Can’t Believe In: The Tea Party and Reactionary Politics in America (Princeton University Press, 2014), won the best book award from the Race, Ethnicity, and Politics section of APSA. He’s currently at work on two additional books. One is, The Great White Hope: Donald Trump, Race, and the Crisis of American Democracy (forthcoming, University of Chicago Press); the other is, This is America: Patriotism and (white) Nationalism, from Reconstruction to Donald Trump. Dr. Parker finished cum laude at UCLA, after which he went on to receive a Ph.D. from the University of Chicago in political science. Dr. Parker has appeared on MSNBC, PBS, and the History Channel. His research has been featured in the New York Times, Washington Post, The New Republic, Talking Points Memo, and Salon.com. He’s written pieces for the Washington Post, CNN.com, and the Brookings Institution, among other places. Professor Parker has also lectured on race and democracy throughout western and central Europe, as well as Australia and Canada. A veteran of the armed forces, Professor Parker resides in Seattle with his dog Brooklyn, where he is a professor in the department of political science at the University of Washington.