Dr. Ibram X. Kendi’s Antiracist Teach-In Featured Authors, Supported Black-owned Bookstores

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More than 8,000 people across all 50 states tuned in for last month’s Random House Special Event Series, WHAT NOW: An Antiracist Teach-In with Dr. Ibram X. Kendi, hosted by One World in partnership with the National Basketball Association and the Women’s National Basketball Association. For seven nights in a row, a special guest from the NBA or WNBA kicked off the event, followed by a conversation between Dr. Kendi and a leading author whose work is helping to shape how we understand our current moment.

The series sold over 8,000 books through Black-owned bookstores and raised more than $100,000 for antiracist organizations. As we continuously grapple with racism on a national and systemic scale, Dr. Kendi used WHAT NOW to give people language and strategies for forging a new, antiracist America. The unique partnership with the NBA and WNBA extended the conversations into how players’, coaches’, and the leagues’ strategies are important for people in their everyday lives.

A ticket to each event included a book that was fulfilled by a different Black-owned bookstore each night. Dr. Kendi also revealed at every event that the proceeds from the ticket sales (after the portion for book sales, which go to the Black-owned bookstores) are being donated to the Boston University Center for Antiracist Research, along with antiracist organizations of his in-conversation partner’s choosing, which included The Equal Justice Initiative, Poor People’s Campaign, The Audre Lorde Project, Outbreak, The Marsha P Johnson Institute, and We Need Diverse Books.

On each of the seven nights, Dr. Kendi spoke with a prominent thought leader: Isabel Wilkerson, Bryan Stevenson, Eddie S. Glaude, Jr., Robin DiAngelo, Brit Bennett, Jason Reynolds, and Angie Thomas. They engaged in powerful conversations on varied topics, including what a new justice system can look like, how America can begin again after racism, and how can we help children and young people strive to be antiracist.

Dr. Kendi was also joined by Cynthia Marshall, CEO of the Dallas Mavericks; Lloyd Pierce, Head Coach of the Atlanta Hawks; Steve Kerr, Head Coach of the Golden State Warriors; Swin Cash, WNBA Champion and Vice President, Basketball Operations, New Orleans Pelicans; Harrison Barnes of the Sacramento Kings; and Natasha Cloud of the Washington Mystics.

Posted: September 10, 2020