The Shape of the River: Long-Term Consequences of Considering Race in College and University Admissions

    Foreword by
  • Glenn C. Loury

The landmark New York Times bestseller that demonstrates the benefits of race-conscious admissions in higher education


Jan 24, 2000
6 x 9.25 in.
103 line illus. 93 tables
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This is the book that has forever changed the debate on affirmative action in America. The Shape of the River is the most far-reaching and comprehensive study of its kind. It brings a wealth of empirical evidence to bear on how race-sensitive admissions policies actually work and clearly defines the effects they have had on over 45,000 students of different races. Its conclusions mark a turning point in national discussions of affirmative action—anything less than factual evidence will no longer suffice in any serious debate of this vital question.

Glenn Loury’s new foreword revisits the basic logic behind race-sensitive policies, asserting that since individuals use race to conceptualize themselves, we must be conscious of race as we try to create rules for a just society. Loury underscores the need for confronting opinion with fact so we can better see the distinction between the “morality of color-blindness” and the “morality of racial justice.”

Awards and Recognition

  • Winner of the 2001 Grawemeyer Award in Education
  • Winner of the 1999 Award for Best Professional/Scholarly Book in Government and Political Science, Association of American Publishers