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Why is it we have such a hard time talking about race in America? KUER and RadioWest have partnered with United Way of Salt Lake for a deep look at diversity in our country today. Historian Jelani Cobb, comedian Negin Farsad, and journalist Maria Hinojosa came to Utah to talk about their experiences from the front lines of the racial divide.

The Realities Of Diversity: A Conversation With Jelani Cobb

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New Yorker staff writer Jelani Cobb writes about the problems we have in this country with race and injustice. He says that race may just be a mythology, but it’s also a useful way of looking at our checkered history, and talking about it isn’t easy.

RadioWest divider.

Thursday, we’re broadcasting our conversation with New Yorker staff writer Jelani Cobb. He joined us this week for our Realities of Diversity speaker series, our partnership with United Way of Salt Lake. Cobb’s writing deals with the problems we have in this country with race, politics and injustice. He says that race may just be a mythology, but it’s also a very useful myth for looking at America’s history of slavery and segregation and economic discrimination, and talking about it is never easy.

Jelani Cobb has been contributing to The New Yorker since 2012, and became a staff writer in 2015. He writes frequently about race, politics, history, and culture. His most recent book is The Substance of Hope: Barack Obama and the Paradox of Progress. He’s a professor of journalism at Columbia University. He won the 2015 Sidney Hillman Prize for Opinion and Analysis Journalism, for his columns on race, the police, and injustice.

The Realities of Diversity is a three-part speaker series that takes a deeper look at race and diversity in America, sponsored by KUER, RadioWest, and United Way of Salt Lake. Join us on September 12 for a conversation with social justice comedian and writer Negin Farsad, and on October 17 for an evening with Maria Hinojosa, host of NPR Latino USA.

Doug Fabrizio has been reporting for KUER News since 1987, and became News Director in 1993. In 2001, he became host and executive producer of KUER's RadioWest, a one hour conversation/call-in show on KUER 90.1 in Salt Lake City. He has gained a reputation for his thoughtful style. He has interviewed everyone from Isabel Allende to the Dalai Lama, and from Madeleine Albright to Desmond Tutu. His interview skills landed him a spot as a guest host of the national NPR program, "Talk of the Nation." He has won numerous awards for his reporting and for his work with RadioWest and KUED's Utah NOW from such organizations as the Society of Professional Journalists, the Utah Broadcasters Association, the Public Radio News Directors Association and the Academy of Television Arts and Sciences.
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