Launching today is The Retort. Our first factual & analytical exploration: CNN's Black in America II. Here's the inaugural link. Here's an excerpt from the press release:
July 6, 2009
Your mother always told you about talking back -- mainly not to do it. To keep your
mouth shut. To mind your manners. To keep your head down and be happy with the
scraps life tosses at you. After all, talking back could get your hurt. Talking back could
get you in trouble. And historically for black people, talking back could get you killed.
But times have changed. They've had their say. Now it's time for a response.
Welcome to The Retort (www.blackretort.com), launching July 6th, it is the place for
political discourse and plenty of "talking back" on black representation in the media. The
site will kick off with CNN's latest installment of Black In America. Last year the cable
network premiered the controversial series to much fanfare and derision. Reported on and
hosted by CNN correspondent Soledad O'Brien, many criticized the series for having a
detached, anthropological approach to black culture. But was this critique warranted?
Was it a true-to-form examination of black life, or was it a primer for the uninitiated?
What was CNN's motivation? How could they make it better? Or was it necessary at all?
These questions, along with critical analysis, satire and more, will be answered on The
Retort, featuring the work of bloggers Jay Anderson of AverageBro, Danielle Belton of
The Black Snob, Christopher Chambers of Nat Turner's Revenge, Cheryl Contee of
Jack & Jill Politics, Charles D. Ellison of The Ellison Report, Gina McCauley of
Michelle Obama Watch and What About Our Daughters, Vernon Mitchell Jr. of Negro
Intellectual, Baratunde Thurston of Jack & Jill Politics, Lamar Tyler of Black and
Married With Kids, Elon James White of This Week In Blackness, Poet, writer Bassey
Ikpi and more.
The Retort will take a critical eye to the representation of blacks in the media. It's also a
chance for you to sound off on your opinions.
It's time to stop being silent and start talking back on The Retort. The time to speak up is
Danielle C. Belton