Racism & Sports: Changing Athletics, Changing Society
Jemele Hill is an award-winning sports journalist, a writer at The Atlantic, and host of the Unbothered podcast. She was a co-host of SportsCenter on ESPN and a Senior Correspondent and Columnist for their website, The Undefeated, before leaving the network in 2018.
Dr. Kendi and Hill have a thought-provoking conversation about overhauling sports – from ownership to fandom to media – in the pursuit of an antiracist future.
For a transcript of this episode, click here.
QUESTIONS TO INSPIRE DIALOGUE
- Dr. Kendi explains how writing about sports led him to eventually write about racism. Where and how did your antiracist journey begin?
- Dr. Kendi and Jemele Hill outline some of the positive changes that can be made to sports journalism and the media in general, to tell more representative, equitable stories. What are some of the changes you would like to see to how sports are covered in America?
- Jemele Hill talks about the lack of representation of Black athletes in the community of journalists who cover them, reminding us that roughly 80% of sports reporters are white men. How do you think sports coverage would change if the reporters better reflected the athletes they’re covering?
- Jemele Hill argues that sports fans – in addition to athletes – have the power to demand more from athletic organizations, in the ways of equity and justice for players. Are you a sports fan? What can you do as a fan and a consumer to better support athletes of color?
FURTHER READING + RESOURCES
- It’s Time for Black Athletes to Leave White Colleges by Jemele Hill
- Naomi Osaka Is Part of a Larger War Within Sports by Jemele Hill
- Forty Million Dollar Slaves: The Rise, Fall & Redemption of the Black Athlete by William C. Rhoden
- The Revolt of the Black Athlete by Harry Edwards
- Silent Gesture: The Autobiography of Tommie Smith by Tommie Smith
- Writings on The Wall: Searing for a New Equality Beyond Black and White by Kareem Abdul-Jabbar
- Sting Like a Bee: Muhammeed Ali vs. The United States of America, 1966-1971 by Leigh Montville
ORGANIZATIONS TO SUPPORT