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Maplewood Ideas Fest: ‘Punching the Air’ with Ibi Zoboi, Yusef Salaam & Khadijah Costley White

October 15, 2020 @ 8:00 am - 7:00 pm


Ibi Zoboi and Dr. Yusef Salaam will discuss their powerful new book, Punching the Air, which they co-authored. Moderated by Dr. Khadijah Costley White.

Punching the Air is “a masterwork of humanity,” “a vital story for young readers in a tumultuous time,” and “an unfiltered perspective of the anti-Blackness upholding the U.S. criminal justice system.” The publisher is partnering with nonprofit organizations to donate copies of this book to incarcerated youth.

Dr. Yusef Salaam is a poet, motivational speaker, criminal justice reform advocate, and a member of the Exonerated Five. Dr. Salaam was one of five teenagers who were wrongfully incarcerated in 1989. You can find him online at

Ibi Zoboi is the New York Times Bestselling author of MY LIFE AS AN ICE CREAM SANDWICH, her middle-grade debut, and the Young Adult novels PRIDE, AMERICAN STREET, a National Book Award Finalist and a New York Times Notable Book, and co-author of PUNCHING THE AIR with Dr Yusef Salaam. She is also the editor of BLACK ENOUGH: STORIES OF BEING YOUNG & BLACK IN AMERICA. She lives in Maplewood with her family. You can find her online at

Dr. Khadijah Costley White is an Assistant Professor in the Department of Journalism and Media Studies in the School of Communication and Information at Rutgers University in New Brunswick. Previously she worked as a journalist on an Emmy-nominated team at NOW on PBS (formerly NOW with Bill Moyers) and a New York City Teaching Fellow. She is the author of The Branding of Right-Wing Activism: The News Media and the Tea Party.


October 15, 2020
8:00 am - 7:00 pm
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