Notes On The State



Notes on the State is produced at the University of Virginias Carter G. Woodson Institute for African-American and African Studies for the University's Bicentennial. The six-part series engages with Thomas Jefferson's legacy today, his contradictions and paradoxes as well as the limits and failures of his ideas, including his writings about equality, slavery, reform, and revolution. Episodes will explore a range of topics: the concept of race and racial difference, the Jeffersonian legacy of protest, slavery at the University of Virginia and Monticello, Jefferson's contributions to the U.S. prison system, and Haiti's influence on the Louisiana Purchase. "Notes on the State" launches Presidents' Day 2019.


  • Q2: Coming to Terms with Sally Hemings

    17/02/2020 Duración: 48min

    Thomas Jefferson fathered six children with the enslaved woman, Sally Hemings. For generations, the details of her life story have been overshadowed by Jefferson’s iconic image and the controversy surrounding what passed between them. Who is Sally Hemings? And what is her story? What would coming to terms with her story mean for the way we understand Jefferson’s history?

  • Q1: The Difference Jefferson Makes

    18/02/2019 Duración: 49min

    Thomas Jefferson makes some controversial claims about race and racial difference in his first and only book, Notes on the State of Virginia. How do we reconcile Jefferson's racist theories with his ideals of liberty, equality, and individual freedom? What do these tensions in Jefferson’s work tell us about belonging and citizenship today? Find out in our first query: "The Difference Jefferson Makes." 

  • Q0: Introducing "Notes on the State"

    06/02/2019 Duración: 04min

    Is it enough to say Thomas Jefferson is a paradox? "Notes on the State" explores Jefferson's contradictions, the limits of his writings and legacies of his history for our nation today. Produced at the University of Virginia's Carter G. Woodson Institute for African-American and African Studies, the series launches Presidents' Day, February 18th 2019.