NYT Quietly Revises 1619 Project and Abandons Central Claim, Nikole Hannah-Jones DELETES ALL TWEETS

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11m Sep 28, 2020

The 1619 Project is an effort produced by the New York Times Magazine, specifically by a woman named Nikole Hannah-Jones among several other contributors. It was published in August of 2019, allegedly on the 400th anniversary of the “true” founding of the United States, when the first African slaves were brought to American soil. It was awarded a Pulitzer Prize.

The NYT has now quietly revised the text of the project and claimed they never asserted that 1619 was the true founding. Nikole Hannah-Jones, one of the main contributors, has also scrubbed all her tweets.

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The 1619 Project asserts that the true founding date of the American republic is not 1776, with the signing of the Declaration of Independence, but rather 1619, allegedly when the first African slaves were brought to American soil at the Jamestown Colony. It goes further to posit that, because of this historical incident (supposing it is true and articulated accurately), the United States has always been a nation founded economically (see also, capitalism), thus politically (see also, liberalism), upon the institution of slavery, which was therefore encoded into the societal DNA of the American republic. That is, the 1619 Project exists to go beyond the claim that racism is America’s “Original Sin” to make the far more extraordinary claim (on very shaky evidence and weak argumentation) that it is, in fact, its genuine foundational principle.

Not content merely to make this claim, the 1619 Project insists that the American Revolution was fought primarily in the attempt to preserve American slavery against the will of the British, which it claims intended to end slavery sooner than the colonists would have it. These features, the project claims, have left indelible marks of systemic racism and white supremacy in the American nation at the level of law, institutions, economics, culture, and society that it has not and cannot get over without a fundamental remaking of the entire system itself (see also, revolution). That is, it is an attempt to cast the entire American Experiment as one built upon and for the purposes of the oppression and domination of blacks by whites through slavery and its systemic legacies (see also, liberalism, meritocracy, and post-traumatic slave syndrome). Helping to facilitate this aim, the 1619 Project is not merely limited to a series of articles in the New York Times Magazine but also includes a thoroughly designed K–12 educational curriculum being supported by the Pulitzer Center and rolled out in primary and secondary schools throughout the United States (see also, critical pedagogy).

As soon as the first essay of the 1619 project was published, it faced criticism from several leading American historians for being ahistorical. As good and as necessary as critiques of the 1619 project’s history are, they are insufficient because critics find themselves up against a school of thought which rejects the very concept of truth. Rooted in postmodernist, Foucauldian, and social justice world views, the authors of the 1619 project believe that there is no such thing as an objective telling of history. Everything is simply a matter of warring narratives.

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