Created Equal: Setting the historical record straight on Black invention in America

Brookings Institution’s Andre Perry joined Stephen Henderson to discuss the legacy of Black invention in America.

American inventor and patent draftsman Lewis Latimer

American inventor and patent draftsman Lewis Latimer.

Black Americans have largely been left out of the story of American invention. In the North and South, patents from Black inventors tell a different story about innovation and U.S. history.

Andre Perry is a senior fellow at the Brookings Institution. His recent work dives into the world of American Invention, and takes a look at how discrimination affected Black inventors differently in the North and South. He spoke with Created Equal host Stephen Henderson about why it matters to the American notions of innovation and exceptionalism.

How does race play into the way we think of our history of invention?

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Andre Perry, senior fellow at the Brookings Institution

“For such a long time, America has pretended to be land of the free and home of the brave…but the reality is when you mask the history, you are masking the people who contributed to its greatness,” said Perry.

Listen to Created Equal with host Stephen Henderson weekdays from 9-10 a.m. ET on 101.9 WDET and streaming on-demand.

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