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Nikole Hannah-Jones Is the Next Guest of the University Lectures Series
Pulitzer Prize-winning investigative journalist Nikole Hannah-Jones, creator of The New York Times’ acclaimed “The 1619 Project,” will be the next guest of the University Lectures series on Thursday, Oct. 8 at 7:30 p.m.
She will be interviewed by Rawiya Kameir, assistant teaching professor in the magazine, news and digital journalism department in the Newhouse School. A critic, editor and producer, Kameir was a finalist for the 2020 National Magazine Award in the Essays and Criticism category.
All individuals wishing to virtually attend the lecture must register. You will then be sent a confirmation email with your personal link to access the virtual interview.
Syracuse University’s premier speaker series, the University Lectures brings to Syracuse University audience members and the larger public notable guest speakers of exceptional accomplishment who share their diverse global experiences and perspectives. The series was created through, and is supported by, the generosity of alumnus Robert B. Menschel ’51. Media sponsor for the University Lectures is WAER.
Hannah-Jones covers racial injustice for The New York Times Magazine and has spent years chronicling the way official policy has created—and maintains—racial segregation in housing and schools. Her deeply personal reports on the black experience in America offer a compelling case for greater equity.
She was named a MacArthur Fellow in 2017 for “reshaping national conversations around education reform.” This is but one honor in a growing list. Her story “Worlds Apart” in The New York Times Magazine won the National Magazine Award (a.k.a. Ellie) for “journalism that illuminates issues of national importance” as well as the Hillman Prize for Magazine Journalism.
In 2016, Hannah-Jones was awarded a Peabody Award and a George Polk Award for radio reporting for her “This American Life” story “The Problem We All Live With.” She was named Journalist of the Year by the National Association of Black Journalists and was also named to 2019’s The Root 100 as well as Essence’s Woke 100. Her reporting has also won Deadline Club Awards, Online Journalism Awards, the Sigma Delta Chi Award for Public Service, the Fred M. Hechinger Grand Prize for Distinguished Education Reporting and the Emerson College President’s Award for Civic Leadership.
Most recently, The New York Times Magazine’s “The 1619 Project” that she spearheaded on the history and lasting legacy of American slavery went viral, and her powerful introductory essay—written under the headline “Our Democracy’s Founding Ideals Were False When They Were Written. Black Americans Have Fought to Make Them True”—was awarded the 2020 Pulitzer Prize for commentary. Named for the year the first enslaved Africans arrived in America, the project features an ongoing series of essays and art on the relationship between slavery and everything from social infrastructure and segregation, to music and sugar—all by Black American authors, activists, journalists and others.
Nothing we know about American life today has been untouched by the legacy of slavery. “The 1619 Project” quickly went viral—the print issue flew off shelves immediately, prompting hundreds of thousands of extra copies to be printed—spreading its heartbreaking and important message worldwide. Random House announced that it will be adapting the project into a graphic novel and four publications for young readers, while also releasing an extended version of the original publication, including more essays, fiction and poetry.
Earlier this year, Hannah-Jones appeared on “The Daily Show with Trevor Noah” to discuss the project. And an impactful ad about the project—a collaboration with singer-songwriter Janelle Monáe—debuted at the Oscars just days later.
In addition to Hannah-Jones’ Pulitzer, “The 1619 Project” won two 2020 National Magazine Awards this past May, in the Public Interest category and in the Podcasting category, for three audio pieces.
In February 2020, she was profiled by Essence as part of its Black History Month series, celebrating “the accomplishments made by those in the past, as well as those paving the way for the future.”
Hannah-Jones co-founded the Ida B. Wells Society for Investigative Reporting with the goal of increasing the number of reporters and editors of color.
Along with The New York Times, her reporting has been featured in ProPublica, The Atlantic Magazine, Huffington Post, Essence, The Week Magazine, Grist, Politico Magazine and on “Face the Nation,” “This American Life,” “The Tom Joyner Morning Show,” MSNBC, C-SPAN, Democracy Now and radio stations across the country.
The University Lectures series will continue virtually via Zoom this semester with celebrated designer, international tastemaker, television personality and Syracuse University alumnus Thom Filicia ’04 (“Queer Eye for the Straight Guy”) on Oct. 27.