MSUToday
Published: Feb. 24, 2011

Faculty conversations: Ronald Hall

Contact(s): Meghan Spork University Relations Student Writer cell: (248) 250-3743 meghan.spork@ur.msu.edu

“We always talk about race in this country, but race is irrelevant. I think it always was irrelevant,” said Ronald Hall. “In discourse, the term race was always used, when the way that you assess race is by skin color.”

Hall, a professor in the School of Social Work, has been researching and writing on race relations for more than 20 years.
In 1990, he testified as an expert witness in the country’s first skin-color discrimination case between African Americans.

“Even though that case involved African Americans, I knew that it was something that involved all people of color: Latino Americans, Asian
Americans and Native Americans all display the same kinds of behaviors,” Hall said.

Much of his career has been spent exploring the Bleaching Syndrome, an affliction that is indicative of people of color. The Bleaching Syndrome is more complex than just skin color. It is present when people of color modify parts of themselves to fit a more mainstream Caucasian ideal.

“While we do still have a lot of problems with the issue of race and racism, obviously we now have an African American president, so I do think some progress has been made,” Hall said.

Hall wants to continue exploring race relations and conduct worldwide research.

“All I do is teach, write and research and I never get tired of it,” said Hall, “I just really enjoy learning more about my subject matter.”

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Click to enlarge

Ronald Hall, professor in the School of Social Work. Photo by G.L. Kohuth.

Ronald Hall, professor in the School of Social Work. Photo by G.L. Kohuth.

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