Episode 13

Published on:

6th Mar 2021

Ibram X. Kendi: Inside you are two wolves. One of them is racist.

Ibram X. Kendi is a Professor of history, director of the Boston University Center for Antiracist Research, and a research fellow at Harvard University. He is also the author of several best-selling and highly influential books on race in America.

It seems like everybody has an opinion of Kendi, and when it comes to the online commentariat, those opinions can get pretty hostile.

Even among activists and anti-racists, he seems to spark division, with some grouping Kendi together with other controversial writers like Robin Di Angelo. Kendi is often accused of peddling a pop 'anti-racism' which is at best devoid of substance and at worst toying with totalitalitarianism. With his infamous proposal for a 'Department of Antiracism' that would have power over all aspects of governance, and recent illustrated children's book titled 'Anti-racist Baby', these criticisms are perhaps understandable.

But what about the man himself, who in his lectures and interviews, comes across as something of a calm and reasonable voice amongst the culture war maelstrom?

In this episode, Matt and Chris, until now famed for being not racist (honestly), courageously hurl themselves onto the pyre of American racial politics. Will they reveal their total lack of understanding of critical race theory and are they racist or anti-racist according to Kendi? Listen and find out.


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About the Podcast

Decoding the Gurus
A psychologist and an anthropologist try to make sense of the world's greatest self-declared Gurus.
An exiled Northern Irish anthropologist and a hitchhiking Australian psychologist take a close look at the contemporary crop of 'secular gurus', iconoclasts, and other exiles from the mainstream, offering their own brands of unique takes and special insights.

Leveraging two of the most diverse accents in modern podcasting, Chris and Matt dig deep into the claims, peek behind the psychological curtains, and try to figure out once and for all... What's it all About?

Join us, as we try to puzzle our way through and talk some smart-sounding smack about the intellectual giants of our age, from Jordan Peterson to Robin DiAngelo. Are they revolutionary thinkers or just grifters with delusions of grandeur?

Join us and let's find out!
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About your hosts

Christopher Kavanagh

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A Northern Irish cognitive anthropologist who occasionally moonlights as a social psychologist. Chris has long standing interests in the psychology of conspiracy theorists and pseudoscience. His academic research focuses on the Cognitive Science of Religion and ritual psychology. He lives happily in Japan with his family.

Matthew Browne

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An Australian psychologist and numbers-guy. He does research on all kinds of stuff, but particularly enjoys looking into why people believe the things they do: religion, conspiracy theories, alternative medicine and stuff. He's into social media in the same way people slow down for car accidents.