Friday, March 21, 2008

The Root

The fact that I linked to two different pieces on it yesterday, and the fact that I've found it consistently interesting reading about Obama in the past week, prompts me to say: Have you noticed The Root?
The Root is a daily online magazine that provides thought-provoking commentary on today's news from a variety of black perspectives. The site also hosts an interactive genealogical section to trace one's ancestry through, a DNA testing site co-founded by Henry Louis Gates, Jr., who is also The Root's Editor-In-Chief. The Root aims to be an unprecedented departure from traditional American journalism, raising the profile of black voices in mainstream media and engaging anyone interested in black culture around the world.

Maybe you've read it without noticing it, because Slate links to Root stories transparently-- you might think you're clicking on a Slate story and find yourself transported over. It's a sister company to Slate, both being owned by the Washington Post. But it's pretty different from the New-Republic-cute-twist-derived voice that characterizes a lot of Slate (not that there's anything, or at least very much, wrong with that). It's strikingly intellectually serious for a general-interest website owned by a general-interest media concern-- and no, I don't only say that because of the prominence of my friend and former colleague Melissa Harris-Lacewell among the contributors. Have a look.