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Boston Globe and 'Antiracist' author Ibram X. Kendi to create newspaper

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Just what we need

Michael A. McCoy/For The Washington Post via Getty Images

The Boston Globe editorial team and "How to be an Antiracist" author Ibram X. Kendi are joining forces to create a news outlet dedicated to reframing the national conversation on race.

What are the details?

"The Emancipator," as it will be called, is the brain child of Kendi and Boston Globe editorial page editor Bina Venkataraman. The two reportedly met last summer as nationwide protests raged on following the death of George Floyd to discuss how to take advantage of ongoing conversations about race. Then last week they announced the plans.

The publication is to be styled after historic abolitionist newspapers started in Boston in the 19th century and aims to "amplify critical voices, ideas, debates, and evidence-based opinion in an effort to hasten racial justice," according to a news release announcing the initiative.

The outlet will be a one-part scholastic, one-part journalistic work that will "feature oped contributions from world-leading experts and community voices captured by student journalists," the release continued.

Kendi, who is the founding director of the Boston University Center for Antiracist Research, said he hopes the new publication will be as influential as its namesake was in advancing the country toward the end of slavery. Perhaps his publication, he suggested, would lead to the end of all racism and inequality.

"When The Emancipator was first founded in 1820, it was very difficult for people to believe that slavery, 45 years later, would be no more, just as I think there are many people today who can't imagine that there could be a nation without racism and inequality," Kendi said. "This reimagined platform will marry the best of scholarship and journalism to analyze, comment, and seek truth about the racial problems of our time."

In his New York Times bestselling book, Kendi advances the viewpoint that America is a fundamentally racist country and that Americans, in general, are inherently racist. The ideas outlined in his book have since made their way into numerous classrooms across the country.

What else?

The new publication, set to launch this summer, is supported by Boston University and the Boston Globe and has been awarded a hefty seven-figure budget.

It will undoubtedly articulate ideas from a fixed leftist perspective. The project will be guided by an advisory board featuring a host of prominent progressive writers and pundits, including "1619 Project" creator Nikole Hannah-Jones and MSNBC political analyst Joy Reid.

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