The news about Jessica Krug, disgraced George Washington University history professor who has been asked to resign by her department, came fast and furious on Thursday. In a post on Medium, she confessed to having masqueraded as an African descendant, “gaslighted those whom I love,” and asked to be “canceled” for having lived a “violent, anti-Black lie.”
The irony to Krug’s revelation is that she was apparently discovered because several Black Latina scholars questioned Krug’s identity after a group discussion about the late novelist H.G. Carrillo, who, after his death this year, was revealed not to be Afro-Cuban, but African-American by his sister. But it was the violence that Krug, who said in her post that she had grown up as a White, Jewish child in Kansas City, had done to her colleagues, peers and students that hurt the most.
The depth of the damage was most poignantly called out by Yomaira C. Figueroa, associate professor at Michigan State who comes from a “working poor” background growing up in Hoboken, New Jersey. In a Washington Post interview, Figueroa said it was “disgusting,” and asserted that many in the academic world are “aghast that (Krug) would perpetuate these lies and gain access to the spaces in the academy, the resources.”