Life Cycles of Inequity: A Colorlines Series on Black Men

How Injustice Shapes Lives From Birth to Death

May 13, 2014 (New York, NY) – Colorlines this week released the first installment of its new "Life Cycles of Inequity: A Series on Black Men." The monthly series will explore how injustice shapes the lives of black men, from birth to death, using short films, investigative journalism, and infographics to illustrate the issues.  Colorlines is a daily news site where race matters, published by Race Forward, a national racial justice organization.

Life Cycles of Inequity” is led by Kai Wright, Colorlines Editor-at-Large; André Robert Lee, award-winning documentary filmmaker; and Jay Smooth, founder of New York's longest running hip-hop radio show and Race Forward Video & Multimedia Producer. As veteran reporters, analysts and chroniclers of the black male experience, the team brings together different vantages over decades together in a unique collaboration.

“The murders of Trayvon Martin and Jordan Davis reminded the nation just how fleeting life and opportunity can be for black men,” said Wright. “As remarkable new energy and activism emerge to change that reality, we seek to broaden the discussion from a singular point of violence and into the full lifecycle of inequity that shapes so many black male lives.”

The opening theme of “Life Cycles of Inequity” is implicit bias and inequity in education. Lee directed a short film on the bias high school boys face in their daily lives. Additionally Colorlines published an infographic and 4,000 word dispatch on “Race, Disability, and the School-to-Prison Pipeline" by Colorlines reporter Julianne Hing and Graphic Design Manager Erin Zipper.

The Colorlines approach with “Life Cycles of Inequity” highlights:

  • Systemic problems - Beyond individual experiences of oppression and triumph, to how individuals interact with systemic inequity.
  • Poverty matters – Beyond a middle class experience of the economic downturn and record-setting income inequality, to men who have been driven out of the mainstream economy.
  • Life stages - From birth to death, issues range from school discipline to fatherhood, from job markets to health care access.

Colorlines' most ambitious investigative and enterprise work has been done through serial reporting and storytelling projects: "Shattered Families" unearthed the ways in which the deportation pipeline destroys immigrant homes;  "Voting Rights Watch" explored the intersection of race and democracy; and "Gender Matters" column and investigative series explored reproductive rights for women of color. "Lifecycles" will be Colorlines’ 2014 serial reporting work.

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Colorlines is a daily news site where race matters, featuring award-winning investigative reporting and news analysis. Colorlines is published by Race Forward, a national organization that advances racial justice through research, media and practice.