Ijeoma Oluo is a writer, public speaker and self-proclaimed “internet yeller.”
Oluo has served as editor-at-large of The Establishment, a Medium publication that she helped launch, since 2015. Her work focuses on social issues—including race, gender, misogynoir, intersectionality, online harassment, the Black Lives Matter movement, race, economics, parenting and feminism—and has been featured in top media outlets such as The Washington Post, The Guardian and ELLE.
Prior to her career as a writer, she worked in digital marketing and technology. She turned to writing after the 2012 murder of Trayvon Martin, who was the same age as her son at the time.
Her 2018 best-selling book So, You Wanna Talk About Race resurged on the New York Times bestseller after the assassination of George Floyd and the global uprisings surrounding police brutality—sitting in the number one spot two years after its release.
“This book came out over two years ago, and it was and is a book about doing the work every single day,” she told Glamour. “But it seems like it’s getting this massive response only when we see the horrific, blatant, disturbing murder of a Black man on camera, instead of all of the other times that we’ve been hurt and dismissed and brutalised over the years. It’s hard to know that that’s what it takes to get people to listen. It’s not the person in your office saying that they’re being discriminated against. It’s not the people in your lives coming to you and saying, ‘You need to do better.’ It’s not all of the other countless ways in which Black people in this country are funneled into the prison-industrial complex. It has to be this brutal.”
Oluo was listed as one of the The Root’s 100 most influential African Americans, one of the most influential people in Seattle by Seattle Magazine and one of the 50 most influential women in Seattle by Seattle Met. She is also the 2018 winner of the Feminist Humanist Award by the American Humanist Society.Tags: Activism, criminal justice, Diversity and Inclusion, human rights