Abstract

Based on a series of semi-structured interviews, this work uses a symbolic interactionist and critical race perspective to show how Leslie Whittington, the grandson of a former slave and a firsthand witness to racial segregation and its harmful consequences in Appalachia, decided to collect racist objects and use them to make sense of his own and his family’s racialized experiences. It also considers how counter-stories are important for changing the dominant narrative of the Appalachian region, an important and necessary step in working toward racial and social justice.

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