Before fake news dominated headlines, Kevin Young was tracking down its roots.
The author of 13 books of poetry and prose, poetry editor for The New Yorker and director of the New York Public Library’s Schomburg Center for Research in Black Culture, Young has spent the past six years tracing the history of news-worthy fraudulence all the way back to the 18th century. Young’s latest book Bunk: The Rise of Hoaxes, Humbug, Plagiarists, Phonies, Post-Facts, and Fake News chronicles the racially prejudiced path that brought fake news to where it is to today. Longlisted for the 2017 National Book Award, Bunk dives into hoaxes big and small that permeate American history and the cultural attitudes that drive them. Young joins Carole Bell, an assistant professor of Communication Studies at Northeastern University whose research explores the connections between media and politics, for a broad-ranging discussion on the current state and political consequences of fake news. A book signing will follow.
Kevin Young is poetry editor for The New Yorker, director of the Schomburg Center for Research in Black Culture at the New York Public Library, and the author of 13 books of poetry and prose including The Grey Album: On the Blackness of Blackness, which was a New York Times Notable Book, and Jelly Roll: A Blues, which was a finalist for the National Book Award.
Carole Bell is an assistant professor of Communication Studies and affiliated faculty in Political Science at Northeastern University. Bell’s teaching and research focuses on the intersections of media, politics, public opinion and public policy, with a particular focus on issues of social identity. Her first book, The Politics of Interracial Romance in American Film, is forthcoming from Routledge.
This event is sponsored by Radius at MIT. All Communications Forum events are free and open to the general public.