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The Black Journalism Fund is an initiative of Red Pepper magazine. It was launched through a crowd-funding campaign in the summer of 2016, with the aim of addressing the disproportionate representation of BAME journalists in the UK media and the distorted perspective that comes from that basic inequality.
Since March 2017, the fund has been run through open editorial meetings that have taken place so far in London, Leeds and Brighton. They are designed to offer a space where BAME writers, organisers and activists of varying levels of experience can get together to share stories, skills and points of view and work collectively to create an autonomous editorial agenda.
In its first few months, the open editorial meetings of the Black Journalism Fund have resulted in the publication of the June/July issue of Red Pepper – Empire Will Eat Itself – which was written exclusively by black writers and where previously unpublished writers, reporting directly from their own communities, sat comfortably alongside acclaimed authors and artists like Walden Bello and Barby Asante, who have written on issues including the failure of Obama’s Keynesian reforms and the enduring legacy of American writer, James Baldwin.
To-date, 4 articles have been published as paid Black Journalism Fund commissions:
Paid commissions are remunerated at a rate of £200 for an article of 2000-3000 words. The criteria is long-form reportage (i.e. not op-ed). In the words of Gary Younge (who acts as mentor to this project) – “Where are you going to go, and who are you going to meet?” Black Journalism Fund commissions should shine light on undocumented frontiers of race and racism in the world today.
Since March, we’ve also published many more unpaid articles in Red Pepper as part of our campaign to deepen and broaden the influence of anti-racism across the alternative UK media, and moving forward we’ll also be collaborating and co-publishing with online publications including Open Democracy and Lacuna Magazine. Here are more examples of the work we’ve been putting out:
In October, our open editorial meeting will take place between 5-7pm on 13th October. We will be meeting inside the Laidlaw Library, Leeds University. The meeting is POC only. Please e-mail firstname.lastname@example.org to register attendance.
If you’d like to submit an article or discuss a new idea, drop a line to email@example.com.
Connor Devine writes that whilst Brexit might be a car crash, we can't just side with an institution responsible for enforcing austerity.
Michael Coates reviews a new film revealing the shocking state of housing inequality in the UK.
The vicious media campaign against trans people is part bigotry, part strategy, writes Roz Kaveney
Jon Trickett MP reports on 'Dickensian' levels of poverty and hardship felt across the UK.
Natasha King busts some myths around the No Borders debate
He was once a radical icon, but now he's a mouthpiece for racism and nationalism. Time to get off stage, writes Michael Calderbank
Consensus seems to have shifted, but austerity is far from over. The chancellor has committed us to yet more years of misery while the rich get richer, writes Richard Seymour.
Frustrated at the idea of another royal wedding? You're not alone. Joana Ramiro argues we should stop idealising a fundamentally undemocratic institution.
Liberal elites are using Russian interference to minimise their own political failures, writes Matt Turner
Nick Dearden from Global Justice Now argues that after years of colonial domination and dodgy trade deals, the UK must make amends and support Zimbabwe in this uncertain time.
Meet the frontline activists facing down the global mining industry
Activists are defending land, life and water from the global mining industry. Tatiana Garavito, Sebastian Ordoñez and Hannibal Rhoades investigate.
Transition or succession? Zimbabwe’s future looks uncertain
The fall of Mugabe doesn't necessarily spell freedom for the people of Zimbabwe, writes Farai Maguwu
Don’t let Corbyn’s opponents sneak onto the Labour NEC
Labour’s powerful governing body is being targeted by forces that still want to strangle Jeremy Corbyn’s leadership, writes Alex Nunns
Labour Party laws are being used to quash dissent
Richard Kuper writes that Labour's authorities are more concerned with suppressing pro-Palestine activism than with actually tackling antisemitism
Catalan independence is not just ‘nationalism’ – it’s a rebellion against nationalism
Ignasi Bernat and David Whyte argue that Catalonia's independence movement is driven by solidarity – and resistance to far-right Spanish nationalists
Tabloids do not represent the working class
The tabloid press claims to be an authentic voice of the working class - but it's run by and for the elites, writes Matt Thompson
As London City Airport turns 30, let’s imagine a world without it
London City Airport has faced resistance for its entire lifetime, writes Ali Tamlit – and some day soon we will win
The first world war sowed the seeds of the Russian revolution
An excerpt from 'October', China Mieville's book revisiting the story of the Russian Revolution
Academies run ‘on the basis of fear’
Wakefield City Academies Trust (WCAT) was described in a damning report as an organisation run 'on the basis of fear'. Jon Trickett MP examines an education system in crisis.
‘There is no turning back to a time when there wasn’t migration to Britain’
David Renton reviews the Migration Museum's latest exhibition
#MeToo is necessary – but I’m sick of having to prove my humanity
Women are expected to reveal personal trauma to be taken seriously, writes Eleanor Penny