Antiracism Scholar Ibram X. Kendi to Give Virtual Lecture Kendi, author of three acclaimed books on the topic of race and discrimination in America, including “How to Be an Antiracist,” will address the W&L community on Sunday, Aug. 30 at 6 p.m.
Ibram X. Kendi, a leading voice in the study of race and discriminatory policy in America and the author of three award-winning books on the topic, will speak to the Washington and Lee University community in a virtual event on Sunday, Aug. 30 at 6 p.m. The title of his talk is “Antiracism.”
Kendi’s visit is being sponsored by the Office of Inclusion and Engagement (OIE), Student Affairs, and the Rupert H. Johnson Jr. Program in Leadership and Integrity. His talk is especially timely for members of the first-year class, who were assigned to read three of Kendi’s essays in The Atlantic over the summer.
“Dr. Kendi is one of the most brilliant scholars and respected voices of antiracism in our country,” said Tammy Futrell, dean for Diversity, Inclusion and Student Engagement at W&L. “We are honored to welcome him to Washington and Lee as we continue our conversations about race, discriminatory policies and social injustice.”
A native of New York City who attended high school in Manassas, Virginia, Kendi is the son of student activists and Christians who came of age during the Black power movement and were inspired by Black liberation theology. He received bachelor’s degrees in African American studies and magazine production from Florida A&M University and a master’s and Ph.D in African American studies from Temple University.
Kendi is the Andrew W. Mellon Professor in the Humanities and director of the Center for Antiracist Research at Boston University. He is also a 2020–2021 Frances B. Cashin Fellow at the Radcliffe Institute for Advanced Study at Harvard University. Previously, he taught history and international relations at American University, where he was founding director of the Antiracist Research and Policy Center. He has also taught at SUNY Oneonta, SUNY Albany and the University of Florida.
His first book, “The Black Campus Movement” (Palgrave MacMillan, 2012), won the W.E.B. Du Bois Book Prize. In 2016, he became the youngest-ever recipient of the National Book Award for Nonfiction for his bestseller “Stamped from the Beginning: The Definitive History of Racist Ideas in America,” which was a finalist for a National Book Critics Circle Award.
Kendi’s third book, the New York Times bestseller “How to Be an Antiracist” (One World, 2019), generated significant acclaim, especially after George Floyd’s death in Minneapolis spurred fresh activism across America. The New York Times hailed the book as “the most courageous book to date on the problem of race in the Western mind.”
His academic essays and opinion pieces have been published in The New York Times, The Washington Post, Time, The Guardian and The Chronicle of Higher Education, and he has received research fellowships, grants and visiting appointments from a variety of universities, foundations, professional associations and libraries, including the American Historical Association, Library of Congress, National Academy of Education, Brown University, Princeton University, Duke University, University of Chicago and UCLA.
Kendi’s talk is open to the W&L community only. Click here to register.