Warning: This episode contains a racial slur. In 1968 America, a country where interracial marriage had been legal nationwide for only a matter of months, the idea of romance between the races was still a controversial proposition. That made it all the more shocking when, in November of that year, William Shatner, a white man, kissed Nichelle Nichols, a black woman on the sci-fi show “Star Trek.” In this episode, Phillip discusses why the racial climate of 1968 made an interracial kiss seem so far-fetched that it caused a stir even when it took place on a show set centuries in the future with historian Matthew Delmont of Arizona State University. Delmont’s connection to the topic is more than academic – his parents, one white, one black, met in 1968.
Read more in this accompanying article from Matthew Delmont: TV’s first interracial kiss launched a lifelong career in activism
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Archival Audio: Star Trek_Kirk & Uhura kiss