Emory Adjunct Professor Defends Use Of N-Word In Class

Emory University has received a $5 million grant to establish a new center at the law school focused on advancing civil rights and social justice.


“History is ugly, and you can’t filter it,” explains attorney and Emory Law adjunct professor Robert Saunooke of his use of the N-word in-class.

Critics, including some Emory University students, say Saunooke was insensitive and out of line when he used the word as part of a descriptor in a recent class.

It was one of two mentions if the word on the same day by an Emory adjunct. And that’s bringing the school a lot of attention. Unwarranted attention, says Saunooke.

On Wednesday’s edition of “All Things Considered,” Saunooke spoke with WABE’s Jim Burress about the incident and how it plays into a larger conversation about race, racism, and “other-ness.” And when they spoke, Saunooke largely defended his use as part of his own experience as Native American.