‘How to Be an Anti-Racist’ author Ibram X. Kendi admits that anti-wake efforts by conservatives have ‘squashed’ the momentum of his movement to push for ‘fairness’ in the US.
- Ibram X. Kendi has criticized anti-awakening efforts for ‘crushing’ his momentum
- The author rose to fame when BLM protests swept the nation.
- His book ‘How To Be An Antiracist’ is one of the most banned texts in the US.
Controversial author Ibram X. Kendi has admitted that conservative anti-wake efforts have “crushed” the momentum he built up during the BLM protests.
Kendi, whose book ‘How to Be an Anti-Racist’ became a New York Times bestseller as backlash over the killing of George Floyd swept across the country, decried its waning relevance three years later.
“The momentum was crushed by a fairly well-organized force and movement of people who seek to preserve racism,” he said. CNN.
In the years since her BLM-inspired success, Kendi’s work has faced criticism from conservative lawmakers seeking to remove ‘Critical Race Theory’ from school curricula and was among the 50 most banned texts last year.
Ibram X. Kendi, pictured in 2020, is a best-selling author, teacher, and racial activist.
His 2019 book ‘How to Be an Anti-Racist’ became a New York Times bestseller as debates over race intensified following the murder of George Floyd.
Kendi rose to national prominence in the wake of the BLM protests in 2020, with many seeing him as one of the movement’s figureheads.
One of the common themes of his activism is the notion of ‘anti-racism’, a term for actively confronting racism, rather than simply stating that he is not racist.
But now he has criticized how the conversation has moved a little further, blaming those he feels have been intent on “shifting the issue from racism to anti-racism.”
“And that they have tried to shift the problem of police violence to the people who speak out against police violence,” he added.
The 40-year-old professor often speaks in his work about doubting his own intellect, a problem that puts him at the door of standardized tests in schools.
‘I didn’t fully get over those doubts until I started rethinking what it means to be smart.
‘We’ve been taught that the smarter you are, the better you’ll do in exams. But the more I understood intelligence, the more I realized that intelligence should be defined as a great ability to know.’
According to a report from ballpoint pen americaKendi’s 2019 book was among the most banned texts in school districts across the country during the 2021/2022 academic year.
The controversial tome examines different cultural issues through the lens of how to be ‘anti-racist’, including gender, whiteness and class.
Kendi rose to prominence when BLM protests swept the US in 2020. (Pictured) Protesters chant in front of a burning truck on August 24, 2020 in Kenosha, Wisconsin.
The author has written several books on ‘anti-racism’. Her 2020 children’s book ‘Antracist Baby’ was set to become a Netflix show, before the streaming service canceled it in March 2022.
Speaking about the text’s place among the 1,648 books that were banned by school districts at the time, Kendi said he wasn’t “surprised” by the move.
“For most of American history, books about people of color or racism have been largely questioned or banned.
‘What happened (lately) is more consistent with American history. But just as we fought those book bans in the past or just as my enslaved ancestors found ways to read abolitionist literature, we can also fight and keep reading today.’
Other notable books to be withdrawn from classrooms and libraries in recent years include the LGBT-penguin love story ‘And Tango Makes Three’ and Nobel Prize winner Toni Morrison’s ‘The Bluest Eye’.
While enjoying her newfound success in 2020, Kendi released a follow-up book aimed at educating children, titled ‘Anti-Racist Baby’.
Conceived as an instruction manual for parents to discuss racism with their children, the text proposes nine steps to address the issue and help children become ‘anti-racists’.
The book was set to come to life as an animated series on Netflix, before the streaming service went offline last year.