Tracy Clayton, writer, humorist, and co-host of the nationally recognized podcast Another Round, has been named the 2016-2017 Ida B. Wells Media Expert-in-Residence for the Anna Julia Cooper Center at Wake Forest University.
Named for famed anti-lynching advocate Ida B. Wells-Barnett, the Wells Residency develops a yearlong relationship between the Anna Julia Cooper Center and a journalist with a record of compelling work about Southern issues and an eye on gender and racial equality. During their residency, the Wells Expert-in-Residence produces writing or media, engages with students and community, and shares expertise with faculty.
As part of her yearlong residency, Clayton will visit Wake Forest on Nov. 14-18. Her visit, immediately on the heels of the election, will include public events with faculty, students, and community members encouraging broad, engaging conversations in her signature style of humor and insight. Prior to her visit, Clayton will engage the Wake Forest community through high profile social media events, and a small group of media interns will travel to New York City to work directly with her. Additional events are planned for spring.
“The Anna Julia Cooper Center is thrilled that Tracy has agreed to be an integral part of our media, race, and gender conversations,” said Maya Angelou Presidential Professor Melissa Harris-Perry. “She brings a generational sensibility reflecting the experiences of our students, a Southern identity informing her analysis, and a deep curiosity that leads her audiences to both hilarious and insightful conclusions. Clayton’s work is perfectly positioned at the nexus of a changing media landscape that raises critical questions about race and gender in both form and content. I can’t wait to see what new ideas Clayton sparks for our students and community.”
The residency emphasizes and embraces the pivotal role journalism plays as a way to advance justice — echoing Wells’ belief that “the way to right wrongs is to turn the light of truth upon them.”
“It is an immense honor to have been chosen as the AJC Center’s media expert-in-residence,” said Clayton. “Being a black woman often feels like talking into a void, like screaming at the top of your lungs and wondering if anyone is listening. With this, I feel heard and seen, and I can’t wait to help other young people feel that way, too.”
Clayton is from Louisville, Kentucky, and is a graduate of Transylvania University. In 2014, she joined BuzzFeed and is co-host of the podcast Another Round. The show has been praised as wry, witty, and intelligent. In 2016, Another Round scored big interviews, including Hamilton’s Lin-Manuel Miranda and presidential candidate Hillary Clinton.
The Ida B. Wells Residency is hosted by the Anna Julia Cooper Center, interdisciplinary center at Wake Forest University with a mission of advancing justice through intersectional scholarship. The Center supports, generates, and communicates innovative research at the intersections of gender, race, and place, sustaining relationships between partners on campus and throughout the nation in order to ask new questions, reframe critical issues, and pursue equitable outcomes. The Center is directed by Melissa Harris-Perry.