Supreme Court Justice Clarence Thomas' new book, "My Grandfather's Son," presents new insight into one of the most enigmatic figures on the court, but the book also chronicles the explosive confirmation hearings that deepened the fault lines of race and gender in America.
Sixteen years later, Thomas still maintains that Anita Hill, the woman who stood between him and the Supreme Court, is a liar. In his new book, he calls her "my most traitorous adversary."
In an exclusive interview with "Good Morning America" today, Hill told Robin Roberts, "I understand that he is very angry and wants to vindicate himself, but my testimony was truthful."
In 1991, years after working for Thomas at the U.S. Department of Education, Hill, his former assistant, accused Thomas of sexual harassment.
Though eight years had passed since she had worked with him, Hill testified that her memories of their alleged interactions were vivid and vulgar, but the delayed accusations raised much speculation. They surfaced just after Thomas had been nominated to the Supreme Court.
When asked by Roberts why she didn't come forth sooner, Hill said, "It is amazing how much we tolerate in the workplace," explaining that people stay in problem jobs for a number of reasons, ranging from personal to financial.
The conservative Thomas was at the time facing harsh criticism from liberal black leaders and organizations, making Hill's forthcoming all the more speculative. Before she even testified, she was accused of being a political pawn.
"The idea that this is somehow a political ploy that I am involved in — nothing could be further from the truth," she said at a news conference at the time.
In her testimony, Hill said of Thomas, "He spoke about acts he had seen and pornographic films, involving such matters as women having sex with animals and women having group sex and rape scenes."
Thomas said the woman making such accusations was not the Hill he knew. "This combative, in-your-face person is suddenly this demure person, and it's just not that person," Thomas said.
This renewed round of finger-pointing raises the question: Just who was telling the truth all those years ago?
Hill was a professor at the University of Oklahoma when she was called before the Senate Judiciary Committee. She is now a law professor at Brandeis University and she continues to stand by her testimony.
In an interview with CBS' "60 Minutes," Thomas' wife, Virginia, said she believes Hill owes her family an apology. Hill said it is not going to happen and she refused to engage in a debate with Thomas.
"I was there in 1981, for two years, and I know what happened — Virginia does not," Hill said. She said her main concern is the approach Thomas is taking.
"He's trashing accusers. I don't want this to become the model — we have moved forward and resolve these claims without this rancor," she said.