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Interview with UC Santa Barbara Professor of Environment Leah Stokes; Interview with Historian and Great-Granddaughter of Nikita Khrushchev Nina Khrushcheva; Interview with "The Story of Art Without Men" Author and "The Story of Art as it's Still Being Written" Curator Katy Hessel; Interview with Brennan Center for Justice Senior Fellow and "When the Stars Begin to Fall" Author Theodore R. Johnson. Aired 1-2p ET
Aired September 29, 2022 - 13:00:00 ET
THIS IS A RUSH TRANSCRIPT. THIS COPY MAY NOT BE IN ITS FINAL FORM AND MAY BE UPDATED.
ANNOUNCER: This is CNN. More people get their news from CNN than any other news source.
CHRISTIANE AMANPOUR, CNN CHIEF INTERNATIONAL ANCHOR: Hello, everyone. And welcome to "Amanpour". Here's what is coming up.
Catastrophic storm Ian continues its destructive surge through Americas' southeast. I ask climate policy expert Leah Stokes what makes Ian so
powerful and is this the future?
Then, Russia prepares to illegally annex Ukrainian territory as military age men there vote against the war with their feet. Historian Nina
Khrushcheva weighs in from Russia on the next phase of the conflict.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
KATY HESSEL, AUTHOR, "THE STORY OF ART WITHOUT MEN" AND CURATOR "THE STORY OF ART AS IT'S STILL BEING WRITTEN": I went to an art fair. And I realized
that out of the thousands of artworks in front of me, not a single one was by a woman.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
AMANPOUR: Art historian Katy Hessel puts women back in the picture.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
THEODORE R. JOHNSON, SENIOR FELLOW, BRENNAN CENTER FOR JUSTICE AND AUTHOR, "WHEN THE STARS BEGIN TO FALL": There is a historic number of black
candidates running for office on the Republican ticket.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
AMANPOUR: Author Ted Johnson explores why black Republican candidates are rising, as black Republican voters are disappearing.
Welcome to the program, everyone. I'm Christiane Amanpour in London.
In the United States, at this moment, Ian is intensifying once again. Already one of the strongest storms ever to hit the U.S., causing
catastrophic flooding and destruction across hundreds of miles. Rescue efforts are underway as more than two and a half million electric customers
are without power. Streets and highways are shut down by the monster storm. And key infrastructure is failing, including a portion of the Sanibel
Island causeway off of Florida's west coast. And still the water rises.
Speaking this morning, Florida Governor Ron DeSantis said, the storm is basically a 500-year flood event.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
GOV. RON DESANTIS (R-FL): The impacts of this storm are historic. And the damage that was done has been historic, and this is just off initial
assessments. There's going to be a lot more assessing that goes on in the days ahead. But I think we've never seen a flood event like this. We've
never seen storm surge of this magnitude. And it hit an area where there's a lot of people and a lot of those low-lying areas and it's going to end up
doing extensive damage to a lot of people's homes.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
AMANPOUR: And President Biden has been briefed at the FEMA headquarters in Washington. The U.S. government confirmed that Ian produced one in 1000-
year rainfall in some Florida locations, which embodies a trend in recent hurricanes as warmer weather driven by climate change fuels stronger, more
Leah Stokes is a climate policy expert at the University of California, Santa Barbara, and she is joining me now. Leah Stokes, welcome to the
program. Let me ask you what you thought of what governor DeSantis said. And describe to us what, in fact, that means, this idea of a one in 500-
LEAH STOKES, PROFESSOR OF ENVIRONMENTAL POLITICS, UC SANTA BARBARA: Well, increasingly we can't use those phrases anymore because we have already
warmed the planet by more than one degree centigrade. And the impacts are being seen and felt constantly. What's happening is when we warm the
planet, we basically put a lot of extra energy into the oceans. The oceans get warmer.
And so, we're starting to see that when hurricanes hit warm ocean temperatures, they intensify, they get stronger. That's why we saw
Hurricane Ian almost hit the coast as a category five hurricane. There's very few hurricanes that have ever done that before. This is the fifth most
strong storm that we've seen hit American land in American history.
So, you know, we have to be re-writing those statements, once in 500 years, I don't think so. This is going to be once in a decade maybe going forward.
And that's really devastating. And it's all the more reason why we have to take on the climate crisis.
AMANPOUR: So, as we're speaking, I said President Biden is being briefed at FEMA. And he has said now that this could be the most-deadly hurricane
to hit that part. And, you know, they're going to be obviously searching for victims in the floodwaters.
I guess -- you know, you've written and you've just said, climate change is making hurricanes more destructive.
In 2019, a study found -- at least one study, the biggest, most damaging hurricanes are now three times more likely than they were 100 years ago.
AMANPOUR: So, you're a policy expert, how does policy have to react and match that reality?
STOKES: Well, there are two things that we have to do. First, we have to stop burning fossil fuels. And that's why it's so important that Democrats
in Congress got the Inflation Reduction Act over the finish line this summer. What is that? It's about $370 billion in investments in climate
action to make it more affordable for everyday Americans to get an electric vehicle, to get a heat pump, which is an efficient electric appliance that
can both heat and cool your home. To get these appliances into our lives and get off of fossil fuels. So, that's really good news.
But the second thing we have to do is actually protect people from the climate change that is already happening. Because we're still burning
fossil fuels and we've been burning them for over 100 years now. So, we've already warmed the plan.
We're seeing, for example, that there are levels of sea -- seawater beginning before the hurricane hit that are a foot higher than they would
have been historically. So, climate change is happening now. And that means we need to also be protecting communities because these extreme events are
going to get more and more common.
AMANPOUR: Let me just play this soundbite from President Biden, so we can hear what he's actually said about the effects of this Ian.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
JOE BIDEN, U.S. PRESIDENT: It made landfall yesterday, and it is still moving across the State today. This could be the deadliest hurricane in
Florida's history. The numbers of still -- are still unclear but we're hearing early reports of what may be substantial loss of life.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
AMANPOUR: So, this is just awful. And as you say, it is becoming a recurring pattern. And as the president said, it is still moving across the
State and perhaps to other areas. Which means that flooding is going to continue and it is continuing a pace. What happens now in the wake of this
or in it's, literally, its wake, in the waters, that people are finding themselves. And we already heard millions of Floridians and others are cut
off from electricity.
STOKES: Yes. So, often when we have extreme weather events, whether it's heat waves or hurricanes or extreme rainfall, we are seeing power outages
that go alongside that. This is happening more and more at the climate crisis gets worse.
So, two and a half million people in Florida right now don't have power. And for some people it could take a very long time to restore power. It
could be weeks, maybe in some cases even months. That's just terrible for communities because electricity is such a lifeblood, you know. It can keep
people alive in hospitals, for example. It provides really important, you know, the ability to boil water, sometimes you need electricity to do that.
And many people are under boil water advisories.
So, this is why we can't stop ignoring the climate crisis. And unfortunately, the governor of Florida, DeSantis, he is not really willing
to talk about climate change. In fact, earlier this summer he said that the State could not be investing pension funds, public dollars, in a way that
is aligned with climate change. This is terrible. He is acting in ways that are undermining the safety and well-being of his own constituents in
AMANPOUR: Leah, how far out of step is he or not with the majority of American opinion? I ask you this because as you know, in President Trump's
administration, they rolled back some 100 environmental rules and regulations. And the Supreme Court, as you know, just curbed the EPA's
ability to fight climate change. And you just mentioned DeSantis and his views.
Have Americans changed their views? Are the deniers less, you know, powerful than they used to be when this was, you know, a matter of debate?
STOKES: Absolutely. First of all, why did we have a debate about climate change in the first place? It turns out that fossil fuel companies and
electric utility spent decades sowing misinformation. They got their talking points into president speeches. They got them into high school
textbooks. So, it's no wonder that for a long time, Americans were confused about the climate crisis. That was an intentional thing by fossil fuel
companies so that they can continue to extract pollution and really endanger all of us.
But now Americans see what is happening on their doorstep. They see these terrible hurricanes. They see devastating flooding in places like Kentucky
or heat waves baking the entire west coast. You know, year after year, these extreme events are getting more and more common. And so, the fact is
from a public opinion perspective, the American people want our governments to act.
They know that climate change is happening now. And we need the Republicans in power, whether that's Governor DeSantis or folks on the Senate, to
actually get on the side of the American people and start working on climate solutions.
AMANPOUR: And Leah, it's huge right now, because you say that we have to stop burning fossil fuels and yet with the war in Ukraine, with Putin using
energy blackmail. It's actually the opposite. All our governments are trying to figure out more access to fossil fuels to make up for what's
being, you know, cut off from Russia. So, that's one thing.
And then you've got, you know, the way it's affecting the rest of the world. We've seen these terrible floods in Pakistan. There's a typhoon
hitting Vietnam. I mean, this thing is not going away. And yet we're still going after fossil fuels.
STOKES: Look, I think that this year could be an inflection point when it comes to fossil fuels. What's happening in Europe is that actually many
countries, such as Poland and Italy, are turning rapidly towards heat pumps, those efficient, electric appliances I talked about that can both
heat and cool your homes. They're saying, let's not use gas anymore. Let's not be dependent on Russia. That is a big change.
In the United States, like I mentioned, we just passed $370 billion in clean energy and climate investments. Every American can now get money to
buy a heat pump, to buy an electric vehicle. And that's not just important for the climate, it's also important for our pocketbooks because it turns
out, if you own an electric vehicle in only costs about $1 a gallon to charge. It's really affordable.
So, these clean energy technologies are the way of the future. And Americans are going to be able to access money that helps make it
affordable for them to get out off of fossil fuels. So, I'm hopeful that this could be real turning point year when it comes to tackling the climate
crisis and finally getting off of fossil fuels.
AMANPOUR: Yes, the evidence is all around us. Leah Stokes, thank you so much.
And as we just prepared to move on, a note that something has changed, the World Bank governor, David Malpass, he was criticized last week when he
would not say if global warming was a result of humans burning fossil fuels. A lot of criticism over that and now he's at backtrack. So, maybe
that'll be an improvement.
Now, to a development that also has energy and climate implications, of course, damage to the Nord Stream gas pipelines from Russia to Europe,
which NATO now calls the result of deliberate, reckless and irresponsible acts of sabotage. While NATO does not call out Russia by name for being
behind the attack, it asserts any deliberate attack against allies' critical infrastructure would be met with a united and determined response.
For his part, President Vladimir Putin is hosting a ceremony on Friday to kick off the formal annexation of four occupied regions, representing
almost 20 percent of Ukrainian territory. Ukraine and its allies condemn that as illegal.
With me from Moscow to discuss is the historian and great-granddaughter of Nikita Khrushchev, and we welcome you back to our program.
NINA KHRUSHCHEVA, HISTORIAN AND GREAT-GRANDDAUGHTER OF NIKITA KHRUSHCHEV: Thank you.
AMANPOUR: So, you know, we keep saying the formal annexation but it's an illegitimate and illegal, according to international norms. So, what do you
think Putin hopes to get from that move?
KHRUSHCHEVA: Well, I think he's basically acting the way he has been acting. When things don't go his way, he is escalating. So, he is now
escalating. I think -- I mean, it's a very basic thought. I mean, I can't almost cannot believe that Kremlin thinks in such basic ways because in 22
years he, at least, showed some type of tactical savvy, but no more.
So, what it seems they are doing, they are going to declare this breakaway republics, or invaded republics as Russian territory and then fight over
them, as if it's Russian territory. And then, if weapons from the west come to those territories, Putin would say it's NATO and the United States that
attacks the Russian territories, so we need to act. And then there would be another level of escalation.
I don't know what that level of escalation is. We've been discussing the variety of nuclear exchanges. So, that terrifies me. But it does seem that
escalation is the path to whatever Putin thinks he needs to do in order to not appear a loser in this war.
AMANPOUR: And yet, I want to play you some soundbites. This is the result of a "New York Times" investigation where they have been able to get voices
and calls from Russian soldiers to their relatives. So, Russian soldiers in Ukraine trying to call their relatives in Russia. And there are recordings
of phone calls. I want to just play this, and then I want to ask you what you make of it.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
UNIDENTIFIED MALE (through translator): Hi, mom.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE (through translator): We are positioned in Bucha town.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE (through translator): Our defense has stalled. We're losing this war.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE (through translator): Hall of our regiment is gone.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE (through translator): We were given an order to kill everyone we see.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE (through translator): When I come home, I'm quitting --
(END VIDEO CLIP)
AMANPOUR: And of course, people can find more details of this on "The New York Times" website. But Nina Khrushcheva, basically what you just heard
were very worried sounding Russians. And this was actually in March, around the Bucha offensive, which we know how that turned out. But they wanted,
some of them anyway, wanted to come home and leave the military. They say they're losing the war.
What does -- what do you think from what you're hearing there about this gamble by Putin. Will these conscriptors -- you know, draftees actually do
any better than the ones on the ground right now?
KHRUSHCHEVA: Well, you know, you've seen it. I mean, I'm in the middle of it. I'm actually -- I have young men in my family, so we're trying to get
them out of the country. So -- and essentially every family is working towards that. You've seen borders -- you've seen lines on land borders.
You've seen -- I mean, you can't buy tickets. I mean, I bought ticket to my -- for my nephew for exuberant amount of money.
So, it's the war -- I mean, it is one of those things that we keep talking about here is that we can't believe that we are in it because it seems so
insane and surreal. I mean, it's almost like as surreal as it was that began in February 24th when Ukraine just suddenly got bombed and people
couldn't believe it essentially. And now, we are not believing that Putin says we are defending our nation, and yet the nation that he says we are
defending and therefore sending these conscripts that absolutely don't want to go there.
So about -- I would say 500,000, probably a million left in just one week. So, Putin wants to defend the country in which he is essentially 20 percent
of his, sort of, crazy nationalist people are the ones that want to be here. The rest of the country doesn't want to fight the war that he says
needs to fight in order to defend the country.
So, in many ways it's just an oxymoron upon oxymoron upon oxymoron. And these people are going because they understand that this war, the way Putin
wants it, is lost. It's not going to happen. And they don't want to participate in his defeat.
AMANPOUR: So, what happens next, I mean, politically? I just want to remind everybody that you are the great-granddaughter of the former
secretary general of the Soviet Union, Nikita Khrushchev, who did in fact return Crime to Ukraine in 1954. Obviously, we know that Russia annexed it
back in 2014.
What -- talk to me a little bit about that. How does this annexation go? Do people just -- will they -- will it just stay by force of it having been
done? What do you think the four regions in Ukraine are going to experience and look like?
KHRUSHCHEVA: Well, first of, Khrushchev actually, it's sort of a bit of a mythology. He did not give it to Ukraine. He was one of the -- it was
called collective government. He was not the main man in it. So, he did work in Ukraine. And therefore, ultimately, he was the one. And then he
inherited power. Got the power as a prime minister. And therefore, all the blame got on to him.
But actually, he didn't sign any documents of any Crimea transferred to Ukrainian republic within the Soviet Union. But he's very convenient. He's
an anti-Stalinist. He doesn't look like power. He actually tried, I mean, he was no -- he was desperate too. But at least he tried to democratize.
So, he's not a favorite of this government.
And so, when Crime area got annex, people already got fed that propaganda that it's a Russian land. And how Khrushchev dared. So, it's more support.
I don't think the public really cares that much about those republics -- I mean, about those breakaway places, about the Donbas. And I think one of
the reason Putin went in is to push that, sort of, basically shove it to everybody's throat that that's something we need to care about.
And since the whole system of legal structure, the whole system of civil society has been completely destroyed in the last few years, and even
before, that really people don't feel, it's almost like -- it's called the paradox of tyranny. They have to flee. They can't fight with this system
but they can't stay within it. And so, I think what is going to happen that people are going to surrender an aqueous. And it doesn't seem that people
who now voted really vote -- wanted to vote that much to be with Russia nor did they have also, the war going, not had any choice.
And I think he's really setting himself up. I don't know for how soon it will happen, but setting himself up for some sort of a revolution. Though
that revolution may be a long way to go too.
AMANPOUR: When you say revolution, what do you mean? And of course, we just heard you start off by saying your own family is implicated. There are
males in your family who you're trying to get out of this. I assume, because they don't want to fight and they think they'll lose and they think
they'll die for a cause that they don't believe in. So, how much --
KHRUSHCHEVA: They believe. But some people did go. And people who did go, who didn't have the money, who didn't -- you know, probably, may have not
followed politics, they're going to come back in body bags. Because as that boy in Bucha, poor boy said that our 50 percent of our battalion is dead.
So, there will be another level, and then another level. And ultimately, people will say we cannot, as much as we're afraid to confront this Kremlin
because the Kremlin does what it wants regardless of how we say and what we say.
Because normally, any normal country looking at the borders -- the line at the border would say, well, maybe there is -- we should really rethink this
because something is not going right. It doesn't -- how could -- million people don't be that patriotic of Russia. But they're not rethinking.
They're pushing -- they're accusing those who leave in being non-patriotic, and so.
And so, I think ultimately, it will start growing. It does happen. It's just, unfortunately, because Russia is such a big country with such an
oppressive regime. And Putin did a really good job, really repressing it almost to the level of Stalin. Not exactly that way, but certainly in, kind
of, mind games. But ultimately, they will be a breakaway. Unfortunately, I'm not sure it's going to come soon enough.
AMANPOUR: And really quickly, 10 seconds, are you not afraid to stay there in Moscow and talk like this? We've seen so many people arrested. So, many
people are leaving because they feel the pressure.
KHRUSHCHEVA: I may be, but I really -- I mean, this is not a heroic statement in any way, and I hope it's understood. I just don't want this
government to decide where I stay today or tomorrow, and how I live my life. So, I choose to be here because I'm finishing -- I finished the book
on biography of Khrushchev. And it's convenient for me to write here. It's not Putin's business where and how I ago. But we'll see.
AMANPOUR: Well, I'll tell you what, we're so grateful for your incredible insights and your bravery.
KHRUSHCHEVA: Thank you.
AMANPOUR: Thank you so much, Nina Khrushcheva.
Now, as we feel the effects of toxic masculinity from geopolitics to popular culture, one young art historian is pushing back. Katy Hessel first
made a mark with her Instagram account, Great Women Artists. Celebrating women who've have been overlooked by the art world's patriarchy. In her new
book, "The Story of Art Without Men", Hessel delves into the history of women achieving artistic excellence against colossal odds.
And when I met her at the exhibition she's mounted here in London, at the Victoria Miro Gallery, she challenged all of our basic knowledge of women's
role in the history of art.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
AMANPOUR: Katy Hessel, welcome to the program.
KATY HESSEL, AUTHOR, "THE STORY OF ART WITHOUT MEN" AND CURATOR "THE STORY OF ART AS IT'S STILL BEING WRITTEN": Thank you so much. It's an honor to
AMANPOUR: So, when did you discover that there just wasn't female representation in art or at least how art is taught?
HESSEL: It's interesting, in October of 2015, when I was 21 years old, I just finish my B.A. in art history. And I went to an art fair. And I
realized that out of the thousands of artworks in front of me, not a single one was by a woman. And then I asked myself a series of questions. Could I
name 20 women artists off the top of my head? Could I name 10 pre-1950, any pre-1850. And the answer was no. So, I --
AMANPOUR: So, I did a little exercise. I've written them down. And I also could not very quickly, but I quickly did the following. Georgia O'Keeffe,
Lee Krasner, Lubaina Himid, Paula Rego, Elise Ansel, Tracey Emin, who's here, Frida Kahlo. Is that exhaustive.
HESSEL: My gosh. There are so many others. But here's the thing, I couldn't either. And so, I -- if I hadn't actively been studying women
artist for the last seven years, I wouldn't know a fraction or maybe even of these names. They were not to be found in museums or the galleries, or
the history books, or the courses that I was studying.
AMANPOUR: You've done your podcast. You've done your book. Now, second book. You've got the gallery and we're going to talk about some of these
paintings. Have you seen the discussion move forward since you started? I'd say, since 2015 when you first became aware of this?
HESSEL: Absolutely. And I think what's amazing is there has been this like-mindedness amongst so many people across the globe. But also, it's
about who guards these museums? Who guards these history books? Who's been able to write them in the past? The fact that we now see women at the helm
of the Tate, the Louvre, the National Gallery of Art in Washington D.C. That's why it's changing so much because we have this people in powerful
positions whose aim is to spread and highlight representation.
AMANPOUR: Some people might just say to you, listen, Katy, there just aren't women artists. I mean, they just don't exist in the same volume as
male artists. So, quit your whining.
HESSEL: Well, I mean. it's an interesting case. But actually -- the amazing thing is that they totally existed. I mean, the thing is, first of
all, they were massively restricted in what they could do. Women artists weren't even allowed in the life room to study anatomy from the nude (ph)
until the 1890s.
HESSEL: And so, the fact that they were existing in the 15th and 16th century shows how many hurdles they had to overcome. But yes, they were
absolutely great. And also, international celebrities in their lifetime.
AMANPOUR: Your book, "The Story of Art", is a little take on the original story of art.
AMANPOUR: Tell me the difference because -- and the original, how powerful was that one?
HESSEL: Totally. So, this book, "The Story of Art Without Men", is slightly different from the original.
AMANPOUR: You see, it doesn't say, "Without Men" on the cover.
HESSEL: It does. It does, very clearly.
AMANPOUR: Oh, my gosh. It's in some kind of muted white there.
HESSEL: Exactly. It's supposed to grab peoples' attention.
AMANPOUR: Got it.
HESSEL: And also, out of bit of humor, a tongue and cheekiness to grab peoples' attention and show that there's so much fighting to do. So, this
book very much takes its title from Gombrich, "The Story of Art". In America, very much -- people use "Janson's History of Art". And Gombrich's,
"Story of Art", the first edition in 1950 included not a single woman artist in its edition. And even today, the 16th addition, includes just
one, that being Kathe Kollwitz, the German expressionist.
AMANPOUR: You know, there's a famous postcard that somebody once sent me, I meant to bring it. It's essentially, I'm going to paraphrase. It suggests
that can women only get into the Metropolitan Museum if they're nude? In other words, painted. As opposed to actually any other kind of agency. What
do you make of that and how far have come from that?
HESSEL: I mean, your -- the postcard that you're referring to is a fantastic bold graphic made by the Guerrilla Girls, who have been active
since the 1980s. And they put up these amazing slogans saying, you know, do women have to be naked to get into the Met Museum? The disadvantages of
being a woman artist and sort of being satirical.
But the fact that women are so -- they are such a minority in today's world. But yes, do they have to be nude? It seems like they do. I mean,
look at the statistics, it's shocking. I mean, even here on the U.K., just one percent of the National Gallery's collection, one percent, is made up
of women artists. The Royal Academy of Arts are yet to host a female artist exhibition -- expression. In their main space, Marina Abramovic will be the
first next summer.
AMANPOUR: Let's talk a little bit about some of the works in this room. Behind me is a modern female artist. But tell me about that because it's
derived from historical, an old painting.
HESSEL: Exactly. So, the work you're referring to is, "Watch Out Boy She'll Chew You Up" by Flora Yukhnovich. Who's a fantastic painter working
now. She was born in the 1990s. And she very much looks at old master paintings such as by Tiepolo which is the work that you're referring to.
Almost kind of upending it with this feminist twist. And what we see in his works are her, kind of, using, looking at obstruction configuration and
such bold expressive way. But she also works on a scale of old masters. You can't help but be dazzled by this.
AMANPOUR: And then to my right here, we have Tracey Emin, who's a really distinguished British artist. Female, obviously. And she must have really
kick-started Britain's awareness of female artists.
HESSEL: I mean, Tracey Emin has been campaigning for women's participation, especially in the art world for decades now. And she has
been monumental. She was dealing with subjects that feels so current and timely today, such as abortion. In the early 1990s, when she made this
fantastic film called "How It Feels" and it was about her experience of going through that. And actually because of everything that's happening in
America at the moment. That work is actually being picked up now in 2022.
But how long has it got -- have we got to have until people take these subjects, seriously? And she has totally trailblazed this by saying what
the world is about. And actually, there's this fantastic quote that I used in my book, she says, if people are shocked about that, then they should
look at their own lives.
AMANPOUR: So, talking about, lives what artist, female artist, of any era, would you have liked to have met?
HESSEL: Oh, my goodness. Probably Artemisia Gentileschi from the Baroque era. She was absolutely monumental. You know, she grew up in her artist
father studio. She was making towering work by the age of 17, such as "Susanna and the Elders". This amazing work that really actually shows what
life must have been like as a woman in 17th century Rome.
She portrays these biblical stories from the perspective of a woman. And then we see these incredibly, sort of, blood written and gory but visceral
paintings such as "Judith Beheading Holofernes" or "Judith Slaying Holofernes". And actually, she altered stories that once saw the maid
servant in this story keeping watch. And she brings together, almost this sisterhood and as they could have played a knife through Holofernes' neck.
AMANPOUR: You are really young and you are so impassioned. What drives that?
HESSEL: I think, you know, I see something that's missing and I want to do something about it. You know, I was 21 when I started this and I started it
on Instagram through my account, "The Great Woman Artist", because I thought I want to know about them. But also, I want to bring art history to
the masses. This is the subject that has been seen as a lithest (ph) and has, you know, has also restricted a lot of people from entering in. And I
want to say, you know, if you're able to see it then art is literally one of the most accessible subjects there is.
AMANPOUR: So, the Instagram account, which was the first iteration, did you find a reaction and what kind of reaction and did it move the ball?
HESSEL: I think, you know, with Instagram, when you're setting something up, when people look at it almost interwoven with their daily feeds, there
is this idea that it can also reach so many people. I definitely found that there was a correlation between the democratization of art and also the
rise of the internet. Because suddenly and finally, it's up to individuals to actually create their own voice.
You know, I didn't have a platform when I was 21, so I took to Instagram. And I didn't have a radio show, so I made a podcast. And actually, what's
amazing about the internet today is that we have all these resources and we can actually see a change. And also, the fact that people are hungry for
these stories, just by, you know, looking at how many people are interested in this book. The fact that people want to know that these women existed.
AMANPOUR: When you walk into the gallery, you were just confronted by a gigantic female figure. I mean, that's not an accident.
HESSEL: It's not. It's not. So, what I also love about this exhibition, and also what women artists are doing now, is they're not afraid to use
scale. The work that you are confronted with as you into the gallery is "Prom" from by Chantal Joffe, and it's off her daughter, Es. And I love
this work because it's kind of -- there's a lot of ambivalence going on in this work.
First of all, it's on this grand scale. You know, the equivalent of a Rubens or something, but it's off this single girl with this red dress, you
know, it might be going -- she might be going to prom but also, there's a sort of tenseness or nervousness in her eyes. It looks as though she's on
the threshold between adolescents and adulthood. And while she's near it, no longer holding onto the hand of her mother, it's almost as though she's
being set free into the future.
AMANPOUR: It is very powerful. What is it about the market or the structure that has prevented female artists from selling as much, or as
well, or at such high prices?
HESSEL: Well, I think you've only got to look at the gender pay gap in the world, or the western world today. And the fact that the art market is
almost a microcosm of how we placed monetary value on genders in society. So, for example, the highest earning, living artist, is Jenny Saville. Her
work has gone for just 12 percent of the highest living earning -- highest earning living male artist.
And when we look at deceased artist as well, Georgia O'Keeffe has gone for a fraction, less than 10 percent of Leonardo's "Salvator Mundi", which went
for $450 million.
AMANPOUR: Thank you.
HESSEL: Thank you.
AMANPOUR: Shall we get up and do a little something around Khadija?
AMANPOUR: So, this is called "The Girl Next Door"?
AMANPOUR: And you say it's a reimagining of women and painting in America?
HESSEL: I mean, Amy Sherald is extraordinary. She's really kind of reinventing American portraiture. Who has been able to immortalize and
historize people in the past, it's often been white men, white men. Well, what she's doing is she's focusing on the everyday-ness of black people in
America. And she's not looking at them in a sort of public role, she is looking at the simplicity and the everyday-ness of them and bringing out
these beautiful people who she finds in her everyday life.
AMANPOUR: And it really is. I mean, it just leaks off, just as her portrait of Michelle Obama, the first lady did. You know, we talk a lot
about how men painters, particularly at yesteryear, had phenomenal and important patrons like the Medicis, the popes, et cetera. She's had
HESSEL: Which is absolutely revolutionary. And also, completely, you know, catapulted her on to the world stage. And as a result, she is now in the
collections of museums worldwide. And the fact the Michelle Obama did that was game changing.
AMANPOUR: Yes. So, this is one of my favorite installations. I love the photography. Of course, one of the great photographers, women, was Margaret
Bourke-White. I mean, there has been some great women. But this is Khadija Saye, who is an ordinary woman who lost her life and the terrible Grenfell
Tower Fire. What is she talking about here? What is this depicting?
HESSEL: Yes, you're right. She died when she was just 24. And actually, these works, the series of screen princes called "In This Space We
Breathe", and it's very much exploring self-portraiture. So, we see her, whether it be just a segment of her body, full frontal, or turned away from
us but also, looking at her Gambian British heritage. She has a Muslim father and her mother, a Christian mother, who sadly passed there in the
Grenfell Tower Fire. But what she's doing is she looking at the healing rituals. She's just exploring herself, her identity, who she was at such an
early age in her 20s.
These were originally, actually, used -- they were originally 10 types, and she is used a 19th century process for this, which is why there are all
these accidents occur on them. But also, we see this different sort of spiritualist and ritualistic objects that all have cultural significance.
So, she's talking about her identity, but also spiritualism and healing. And Khadija and --
AMANPOUR: Is that her? Is it a self-portrait?
HESSEL: Yes. This is Khadija, yes. And Khadija along with Amy Sherald, Deborah Roberts, Zanele Muholi and all the other artists in this
exhibition, they're, for me, the artist who are defining the contemporary moment, whether it's looking at figuration and portraiture, or painting in
the present day.
AMANPOUR: Katy Hessel, thank you very much indeed.
HESSEL: Thank you so much, Christiane. It's an honor to be on your show.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
AMANPOUR: How uplifting was that? Now, the exhibition here in London runs through this Saturday.
From the politics of art to the art of politics, in the United States, will 2022 to be the year of the black Republican? It could be. With the record
number of African American candidates in the GOP. So, what is driving this? Ted Johnson from the Brennan Center for Justice explains to Michel Martin.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
MICHEL MARTIN, CONTRIBUTOR: Thanks, Christiane. Ted Johnson, thanks so much for talking with us.
THEODORE R. JOHNSON, SENIOR FELLOW, BRENNAN CENTER FOR JUSTICE AND AUTHOR, "WHEN THE STARS BEGIN TO FALL": Thanks for having me. Good to be here,
MARTIN: Even writing a number of pieces over the course of the fall about sort of the interesting racial dynamics, I guess, that we could say,
perhaps, will animate this very important midterm elections. And one of the pieces that really caught our eye was about the number of black Republicans
running this election cycle.
You said that, you know, even before the primaries were over, there were some 80 black candidates running in the party's primaries this year. This
is an extraordinary thing given how few black Republicans have, you know, certainly served in Congress over the years, but have even tried. First,
talk about, why you think there are so many African American candidates running this year?
JOHNSON: It's so interesting. You know, Donald Trump, when he was running in 2016 said, I guaranty you, in four years, I will win 95 percent of the
black vote. And, of course, he fell far, far short of that. But he made it a point, every so often, to sort of, at least, tip his hat to the black
voter because he recognized that if he can make any inroads, something Republicans have been thinking about for decades, that it would make the
Democrat's path to victory far narrower.
So, what's happening in this moment? At the same time, the black voters are giving the least amount of their vote in presidential elections, ever, to
the Republican Party, there is a historic number of black candidates running for office on the Republican ticket. And my sense of this is, that
opportunity is there.
One, there are always black Republicans. There always will be. In fact, we should want there to be black Republicans. But the question is, why this
number of candidates, when the party is so unpopular with black folks? And because the standard bearer for the party is at least racially intolerant
and a lot of is rhetoric. And what that does is create this sort of veneer of racial intolerance for the entire party.
And soi, when you have black candidates that are willing to stand up and say, I am pro Trump, I believe the election was stolen, I am a Republican,
it provides a sort of a shield against some of those attacks or accusations of racism to the party. So, how can a party that's racist have a historic
number of black candidates? And never mind Hispanic candidates, Asian American candidates that are running. This is the sort of protection
against that kind of accusation.
So, what that does is for the back Republicans that want to run for office, this creates a pathway that white Republicans can't leverage. And so, if
you are a black Republican and you are -- have Donald Trump's stamp of approval, if you adhere to the MAGA philosophy of Trumpism is your thing,
you not only have that going for you in a party -- in a politics that's incredibly polarized, but your race gives you an advantage in a weird sort
of way because of how the caricatures and the stereotypes of the Republican Party itself.
MARTIN: In your reporting, do you have any sense whether the majority of these candidates, what they're recruited to run because it was deemed that
they would be highly desirable or did they put their hand up? How did a work?
JOHNSON: Yes. And so, I think that there's three basic paths for most of these folks. One is that they're just Republicans and they want to serve
and this was their pathway. I think John James in Michigan is an example of that. A second pathway is they're kind of opportunists. They want to serve
in Congress for whatever reason, maybe it's out of principle, maybe it's just because they want to be approximate to power, but they sort of check
out the Democratic Party and they were told, get in line, lots of folks ahead of you. And then, they shop up at the Republican Party headquarters
and they say, wow, a black dude, veteran, conservative, you know, maybe we've got a place for you. You can actually help diversify the party. Help,
again, be a shield against some of these accusations, and maybe pull off an upset.
And then, the third path is sort of the -- these are the folks that are basically true MAGA people. They just believe the party is less important
than their belief in Trump. And these folks definitely have been recruited to some extent in some of these races.
So, yes, recruitment happens. Yes, there are just principle black conservatives running and yes, some folks are opportunists looking for the
shortest path to run for office instead of being told to wait in line. I don't think anyone of those pathways are the most dominant, but the one in
recurring theme across all of them is that some level of recruitment had to happen for folks to get through the primary successfully, which is to say
the party machinery needed to get behind them in a crowded primary field in terms of money, exposure, certainly getting a Trump endorsement.
MARTIN: Presumably, there should be political competition, you know, among all groups, right? I mean, the white electorate, we have the last two
election cycles, presidential election cycles was split 50/50, right? Just about, you know, 50/50 between the Republicans and Democrats, between Biden
and Trump, between Clinton and Trump.
So, we don't consider them usual that there's competition amongst white voters, but we do think it's interesting when Republicans can attract black
voters at all and I just think we should talk about why that is. Like, why are we having this conversation? Why does this matter?
JOHNSON: Yes. So, it's just -- there's tons of history here. Look, right after the Civil War, once black men were in franchised in the United States
and then, by the 15th Amendment in 1870, the black vote was lopsided, it was all for Republicans then, the party of Lincoln. And essentially, over
the last 150 years, black voters have always voted in a lopsided manner for the party that was pro civil rights or against the party that was anti
And invariably, that's been the case except for one short period between 1920s and '30s when both Republicans and Democrats because of the great
migration, because the northern Democrats and Dixiecrats in the south were very different, there was a little bit of a competition for the black vote
happening. And what they did was, in a way, mute the civil rights issue differences between the two parties until Truman kind of signs the federal
order that desegregates the military, the federal work force and then, were off to Democrats making a real push to win black voters.
So, when you have this electorate that's always voted in a lopsided manner for a pro civil rights party, you end up with a black elected officials
also being heavily weighted on the side of the -- that's pro civil rights and the party that's pro civil rights.
So, when you get these moments where you've black candidates running in a party that's different from where the black electorate is voting, it's
worth -- it's of note. And that's exactly what's happening now.
As I mentioned, the Republican Party from 2018 I think to 2020 has averaged about 6 percent of the black vote in presidential elections. From 1968 to
2004, Republican presidential candidates averaged over 11 percent. So, the party is historically unpopular with black voters and yet, having these
historic numbers with black folks running for office. That in and of itself is worthy of note.
The other thing is, the largest class of black Republicans ever in Congress was in the 44th Congress, I think it was, in 1873, still reconstructive
period. In the age of Trump, the number of black Republicans in Congress might match that number, which just feels sort of out of balance from what
history has told us and what political science suggests.
But when we think of the current state of this Republican Party, this is the party first captured by the Tea Party, post Obama, and now, by Trump in
MAGA and Trumpism in today. And in these moments, it is easier for black candidates to signal their allegiance to the party because of these
movements and that makes them more attractive candidates than, again, white primary candidates because of the veneer again or racial intolerance that
the party has been battling for decades.
And so, all of these things coming together is what makes this moment so noteworthy and it will be quite interesting to see what happens post
MARTIN: I think traditionally, people have thought about candidate recruitment as a way to attract more people of that demographic to the
party, am I right? I mean, people think, oh, well -- oh, we really need to attract more women to vote for the party. So, we should recruit more women.
We need to attract more Latinos, so we should recruit more Latinos. Is this bad? I mean, is really the argument that more African Americans are going
to vote for the Republican Party because they are these candidates?
Because I got to tell you that their politics are wildly out of step with what the majority of African Americans generally believe and how they
structure their politics.
JOHNSON: Yes. So, certainly, there is this thread that if you have candidates that look like the voters you're trying to attract, that makes
the attraction easier. That is not been true for the Republican Party for several decades. And then, it's not just that, but the quality of the
candidates you're recruiting.
You know, when Barack Obama was running for Senate in Illinois and his opponent fell out of the race, they recruited Allen Keys, a black
Republican from Maryland, imported him into Illinois and said, you know, now, go challenge the other black guy for the Senate seat. Herschel Walker,
he was recruited and given the Trump stamp of approval, but the quality of the candidate doesn't attract more black voters to the party, it's actually
damaging in my view.
And unfortunately, sometimes strategists get -- they miss that part. Get a black person, stick them in the role, they'll immediately attract some
black vote, that makes it easier, our path to victory, a little bit easier, it's just not true. So, quality of the candidate matters.
And there is -- again, as you mentioned, that sort of distinguished background in traditionally conservative fields, like the military or law
enforcement or small business owners, Tim Scott is the profile of the kind of black business owner that Republicans could recruit in order to try to
attract more black voters. And, you know, if you look at how Scott has done in South Carolina, he did better than Trump did with black voters in South
Carolina, marginally better, but better.
So -- but Tim Scott and Herschel Walker are two different types of candidates. Condoleezza Rice and Allen West, two different kinds of
candidates. So -- or two different kinds of black Republicans. So, the idea that race alone and party affiliation alone is enough to diversify the
party tent is wrong and decades of racist have proved out to be true.
MARTIN: But one of the things I think that's so noteworthy about a number of candidates running is that they are election deniers. You know, which is
they assert that the election was stolen, you know, wrongly decided. At the core of this argument, is that a candidate who is favored by a majority of
people other than you could not possibly be legitimate, right?
And this really strikes up a core for many African American voters who have been told, you know, throughout history that they are not legitimate
voters, they're not really citizens, they don't really deserve the full rights of citizenship. So, the core of it is sort a deeply offensive to
many African American voters. You know, I just have to ask you, you what do you make of that?
JOHNSON: Here's the sort of one uncomfortable truth is that if you are a black Republican running in a congressional district that has been
gerrymandered to be favorable to Republicans, you don't need black voters to win the race. And so, the things you may say that may offend black
sensibility generally won't harm your electoral prospects as long as they don't offend the Republican base that is going to -- that got you through
the primary and that's going to send you to Congress.
Now, in those purple districts or places that may lean one way or the other and might be a little bit more competitive, you're more likely to see those
black Republicans not adhering as closely or sort of latching onto the big lie or the Dobbs decision, they may try to mute that part of their record
or remove that part of their campaign website in order to attract more -- a broader coalition of voters that they will need to win. The bottom line
here is that all of this is about electoral expedience. What is the message I need to put out to help me win?
MARTIN: But, you know, what I think I hear you saying though is that among white conservative Republicans or at least among white Republicans who are
very pro Trump, grace is not the significant factor anymore, it's whether you believe that Trump is the rightful president. That's new, isn't it?
JOHNSON: That is. The hyper partisanship, this toxic polarization has definitely changed the political landscape in ways that I think is
surprising to those of us that had been looking at it for years. But here's what I'd say, it's not that race doesn't matter to conservatives anymore,
it's that the -- you know, all of the studies still show that there are high levels of racial resentment, which is kind of a contested score of
things but is something that's been measured overtime. And so, we can at least measure -- you know, compare apples to apples.
And when it comes to white Democrats versus white Republicans, white Republicans tend to hold a higher level of this racial resentment score.
So, what we're see now, post Obama, certainly with the Tea Party and with the Trumpism is that for black candidates or minority candidate's writ
large that were willing to really marry themselves to the Tea Party philosophy, to Trumpism, that that connection to that ideology outweighs
whatever resistance or resentment folks may have on the basis of race.
And so, if we look at the Tea Party movement across the country, that was the time that Bobby Jindal wins the governorship in Louisiana. Nikki Haley
wins the governorship in South Carolina. Ted Cruz, Marco Rubio, Tim Scott, Allen West, Mia Love, Will Hurd, all of these minority candidates are able
to win primaries by clinging more closely to the Tea Party philosophy than the Republican establishment candidates that they're running against in the
So, whatever resentment primary Republican voters may hold towards minority candidates, when those minority candidates show that they are more
conservative, that they're more ideological than the white competition, then the race isn't the hindrance that it might be in another set of
circumstances. And what MAGA has done has provided another set of cover for minority candidates to cling to that, which then reduces the influence of
their race or ethnicity or even gender might otherwise have in a different set of political circumstances.
MARTIN: There could be a historic number of black Republicans in Congress in the next couple of years. And many of them -- most of them are very,
very conservative. How do you think it will change things, or do you think it will?
JONES: Yes. You know, so it will really depend on the quality of the candidates that arrive in Congress. If we have a historic class but there
are eight Herschel Walkers, that's not going to change much in terms of sort of the black electorate --
(END VIDEO CLIP)
AMANPOUR: Press conference by Governor Ron DeSantis in Florida about Hurricane Ian.