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Writing Through Protest: 12 Influential Black Writers Share Why Their Work Is So Crucial


Donovan X. Ramsey, fellow at Demos, contributor to the New York Times, GQ, the Atlantic 

"The stories I've cared about for as long as I can remember are suddenly interesting to the vast majority of new consumers. The race beat is hot again, so to speak... Earlier this year, I was working with a white editor on a piece of reported analysis about mass incarceration. She decided halfway through the process to kill the piece and later emailed me to say that it would be really 'powerful' if I wrote a 'personal reflection' on incarceration. 

"I don't think I've ever been more insulted professionally. First, there's the assumption that I have personal connection to incarceration. Then there's the marginalizing of my voice to the realm of testimony. I turned down the offer. I told her that I was trained and practiced as a journalist, and not interested in offering up anecdotes."