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Damon Young          

Co-Founder of Very Smart Brothas & Author of "What Doesn't Kill You Makes You Blacker"

Damon Young is a writer, critic, humorist and satirist. He was also the co-founder and editor in chief of the VerySmartBrothas blog -- coined “the blackest thing that ever happened to the internet -- by The Washington Post, which was acquired by Univision and Gizmodo Media Group to be a vertical of The Root.

Young's writing vacillates from anthropological satire and absurdist racial insights to razor sharp cultural critique and unflinching indictments of privilege and bias. His debut memoir "What Doesn’t Kill You Makes You Blacker: A Memoir In Essays" is a tragicomic exploration of the angsts, anxieties, and absurdities of existing while black in America. The book won Barnes & Noble’s 2019 Discover Award and was named an NPR Best Book of the Year. It was also longlisted for the PEN America Diamonstein-Spielvogel Award; nominated for both an NAACP Image Award and a Hurston/Wright Legacy Award; and is a Krause Essay Prize nominee.

Young is a contributing opinion writer for The New York Times, and a columnist for GQ. His work has been featured in The Washington Post, LitHub, Time Magazine, Slate, LongReads, Salon, The Guardian, New York Magazine, EBONY, Jezebel, and the Pittsburgh Post Gazette.

A native Pittsburgher who attended Canisius College on a basketball scholarship, Young is also a member of ACLU Pennsylvania's State Board.

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