Jessica Krug, a professor of African American history at George Washington University, admitted in a blog post Thursday that she has for years lied about her identity by saying that she was Black.
The academic said that throughout her life she “eschewed 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: first North African Blackness, then US rooted Blackness, then Caribbean rooted Bronx Blackness.”
In her bio on Essence, Krug called herself “an unrepentant and unreformed child of the hood” and said she is “boricua,” which means Puerto Rican, The Washington Post noted. Krug’s posts appear to have been taken down from the site.
“People have fought together with me and have fought for me, and my continued appropriation of a Black Caribbean identity is not only, in the starkest terms, wrong — unethical, immoral, anti-Black, colonial — but it means that every step I’ve taken has gaslighted those whom I love,” Krug wrote.
“I am not a culture vulture. I am a culture leech,” Krug added.
She noted in the blog post that she deserved to be “cancelled.”
“I should absolutely be cancelled. No. I don’t write in passive voice, ever, because I believe we must name power. So. You should absolutely cancel me, and I absolutely cancel myself,” Krug wrote.
Hari Ziyad, a screenwriter and author, said on Twitter that Krug “is someone I called a friend up until this morning when she gave me a call admitting to everything written here.”
“She didn't do it out of benevolence. She did it because she had been found out,” Ziyad added.
Yomaira Figueroa, an associate professor at Michigan State University, said on Twitter that the "only reason Jessica Krug finally admitted to this lie is bec on Aug 26th one very brave very BLACK Latina junior scholar approached two senior Black Latina scholars & trusted them enough to do the research & back her up."
Crystal Nosal, a spokesperson for George Washington University, told The Hill the school is “looking into the situation” but cannot comment further on personnel matters.