GWU prof admits she pretended to be black for years; university says she won't teach this semester

Instructor said she 'claimed [black] identities as my own when I had absolutely no right to do so.'

Updated: September 5, 2020 - 2:50pm

A professor at George Washington University will not be teaching this semester after she publicly admitted to fabricating a black identity for many years. 

Jessica Krug, a history professor at the school, published an essay on Medium on Thursday in which she admitted to "eschew[ing] my lived experience as a white Jewish child in suburban Kansas City under various assumed identities within a Blackness that I had no right to claim."

Krug wrote that she had at various times assumed identities incorporating "North African Blackness, then US rooted Blackness, then Caribbean rooted Bronx Blackness."

"I am not a culture vulture. I am a culture leech," she wrote in the post, adding: "I am a coward." 

Per the Washingtonian, on Friday university Provost and Executive Vice President for Academic Affairs Brian Blake wrote in an email to the university community that the school was "review[ing] the situation," and that in the meantime "Dr. Krug will not be teaching her classes this semester."

Faculty in the university's Department of History, meanwhile, said in a statement that they were "shocked and appalled by Dr. Jessica Krug’s admission ... that she has lied about her identity for her entire career."

"With what she has termed her 'audaciously deceptive' appropriation of an Afro-Caribbean identity," the professors wrote, "she has betrayed the trust of countless current and former students, fellow scholars of Africana Studies, colleagues in our department and throughout the historical discipline, as well as community activists in New York City and beyond."

Related Articles

Just the News Spotlight