Assistant Professor of history and German studies Kira Thurman answered the question, "Was Beethoven Black?," on her Twitter feed June 18, 2020. The conversation was retweeted over 10,000 times and was featured on Newsweek 's website. Thurman said that instead of asking whether Beethoven was black, she would rather ask why Black European composers aren't well known and highlighted Polish-born Afro-European musician George Bridgetower, a friend of Beethoven. 

Smithsonian Magazine also wrote an article addressing the question and conducted a phone interview with Thurman.