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Jemele Hill is about to get a new platform to discuss her views on sports, race, politics and culture — as well as her own life.
The Atlantic staff writer, Spotify podcast host and former chief correspondent and columnist for The Undefeated is penning a memoir for Henry Holt, the publisher announced Tuesday, after a competitive auction. The book will arrive in 2021.
The commentator and critic made her name as an outspoken critic of President Trump and advocate of football players taking a knee during the National Anthem. In fall 2017, ESPN suspended Hill, then an SC6 co-host, after she was perceived as advocating for an NFL boycott on social media (Hill denied that she was advocating for a boycott) when Dallas Cowboys owner Jerry Jones threatened to bench players if they took a knee during the National Anthem. Previously, Hill had raised eyebrows at the company when she called President Trump a “white supremacist” on Twitter.
Hill exited SC6 for The Undefeated that winter, then left ESPN altogether the following fall to join The Atlantic. “It just kind of became obvious to me that the relationship [with ESPN] — as good and as fruitful and as beneficial as it was — had really run its course,” she said in an interview with The Hollywood Reporter at the time. At The Atlantic, she has written about Brett Kavanaugh, R. Kelly, Kamala Harris, the NFL and the women’s 2019 World Cup soccer team.
Barbara Jones, Henry Holt executive editor, nabbed the North American and audio rights from CAA. “As SportsCenter viewers realized years ago, Jemele has a lot to say,” said Jones. “As Atlantic readers know, her journalism is as swiftly exacting as it is wise. What everyone will discover when we publish Jemele’s memoir is her significant literary talent.”
“I’m truly thankful to be publishing my first book with Henry Holt,” Hill said in her own statement. “They have an excellent reputation and a consistent track record of amplifying some of the most compelling, thoughtful and respected thinkers in the country. I’m excited about the opportunity to stretch myself and grow. I hope that by sharing some very personal experiences in this memoir — things I’ve never shared publicly before — people will have a better understanding of who I am. I also hope by sharing my story, people realize their circumstances don’t have to dictate their capabilities or contributions.”
Hill is managed by Exit 39’s Evan Dick.
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