Farai's blog

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About

Find out more about my books, political reporting and broadcasting, public speaking, and teaching.

Book a Lecture or Event

Since 1995, when she began appearing on cable news as an analyst for CNN, Farai Chideya has given thousands of speeches and hosted hundreds of events. Her bookings have included Ivies Harvard and Yale, large state universities and regional colleges, events at the United Nations and on Capitol Hill, and …

One with Farai

Podcasts with global visionaries.

Five Ways to Start that Book You’ve Always Wanted to Write

1. Read, read, read. There is no good writing without deep reading. Find books that mirror some aspect (stylistically or topic, for example) of what you want to do.

2. Carry a notebook, or use a digital note-taking system (like on your phone) everywhere at all times. The germs of ideas come when they want, not always when you want them to.

3. Research and use analogue or digital ways of organizing your content, from paper notecards to the program Scrivener (my fave), which allow you to group and re-mix clusters of ideas.

4. Find a work-flow (writing on weekends; or daily at certain hours; or a daily page limit) that works for you. Some people carve out time in every day to write; others carve out chunks of time (weekends, vacations) and write deeply and thoroughly only then. It’s not as important what you choose as whether you follow your own system, and are willing

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May 18, 2015 Blog No Comments

Hope, but no quick fixes, in Baltimore (from the Guardian)

Read my piece following the Freddie Gray death in Baltiomore, and ensuing riots, here.

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May 8, 2015 Blog No Comments

Is This Joke About Police Killing Black Men Racist, Funny or Both?

So today I retweeted this joke, with a line at the top about the bitter humor that arises from the news.:

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Then, I deleted my tweet. I was scrolling through the (many offended) responses to the joke, and I thought this was a chance for a bigger conversation.

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This is in response to the latest police killing of a black

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April 10, 2015 Blog, Featured No Comments

The Election of 2060: Or, how do we start a conversation about American stewardship?

Turning off the spigot known as the Colorado River, which waters Western cities and agriculture; whether to allow parents to choose micro-editing of their embryo’s DNA; and whether drone warfare is acceptable in domestic settings — those are just some of the issues we may debate in the election of 2060. Each one is based in on plausible extensions of current technology and trends as they intersect with our society’s fiscal and moral judgments. Of course, 2060 could be way off base. If anything, these issues will probably come to a head sooner.

From the New York TImes From the New York TImes[/caption

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March 24, 2015 Blog No Comments

#AmtrakResidency — The Kissing Motorcycle Reverend and Mobile Audio

The Amtrak observation car is a parallel universe to the bar Cheers — nobody knows your name, but they’ll ask politely, and even if they never ask your name they’ll tell you their life story anyway. Rev. Johnny Brandt’s card says “Weddings. Bike Blessings. Ordained Minister.” He offered to talk to me after I whipped out my mic to speak to a pair of sisters traveling from Ft. Worth, Texas, to Hawaii by train and boat. The sister Rev. Brandt is kissing refuses to hop on an airplane, but that doesn’t stop her from traveling. (I’ll upload their story separately.) Meanwhile, here’s a tiny snippet of audio [sorry, a bit muffled] from the Reverend — or as I nicknamed him, having gotten a smooch myself, the Motorcycle Kissing Bandit.

I’d hoped to upload more audio by now, but I’ve been learning as I go. For the first time, I’ve been recording on two different platforms on my iPh

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March 23, 2015 Blog No Comments

Podcast

Bigger Than Technology: An Interview with Joi Ito on One with Farai

21 Aug 2014

Joi Ito, director of the MIT Media Lab, explains how a sense of play and experimentation inform their cutting-edge work. As a child, Joi Ito went back and forth between Japan and US cities, including Detroit, forging an international identity; a fascination with technology; and also for community. He explains how passions …

Living History, Exploring Nature: An Interview with Betty Reid Soskin on One with Farai

15 Aug 2014

At 92, Betty Reid Soskin is the oldest full-time National Parks service ranger, teaching about racial and gender equality as well as nature. National Parks ranger Betty Reid Soskin has worked for women’s and civil rights; run a “race record” music store; and now helps tell the history of gender and industry …

Music (and Dance) for All: An Interview with Bill Bragin on One with Farai

8 Aug 2014

Bill Bragin, the director of public programming for the famed Lincoln Center, on bringing free and adventurous music, dance, and art to all. Farai Chideya speaks with Bill Bragin, the Director of Public Programming for Lincoln Center, about what it takes to bring great music and art to crowds for free… and also …

Equality — A Survivor’s Guide: An Interview with Urvashi Vaid on One with Farai

1 Aug 2014

Activist Urvashi Vaid talks about how LGBT politics relate to other rights struggles, plus her journey surviving two rounds of cancer. Farai Chideya speaks with Urvashi Vaid, author of books including “Virtual Equality” and a professor at Columbia Law School. Born in India, raised in America, she details how LGBT issues connect …

First Nations Filmmaking: An Interview with Bird Runningwater on One with Farai

25 Jul 2014

Bird Runningwater of the Sundance Institute on innovations in Native and indigenous film. Farai Chideya speaks about the work of the Sundance Institute — the mentoring, training, and career-building sister to the Sundance Film Festival — with its Native American and Indigenous Program Director, Bird Runningwater.

Digital Diplomacy and Global Economy: An Interivew with Alec Ross on One with Farai

18 Jul 2014

Author and former U.S. diplomat Alec Ross on globalization Alec Ross helped define “digital diplomacy”, and logged nearly a million air miles for work — as Senior Advisor of Innovation to then-Secretary of State Hillary Clinton. He talked with Farai Chideya about technology and the future of globalization.