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The Origin Of The Word 'Woke'

Domingo Farias

On this edition of In Black America, producer/host John L. Hanson Jr. speaks with Elijah Watson, news editor for the New York-based black culture website Okayplayer. The word "woke," is an African-American colloquialism that is now defined as "aware of and actively attentive to important facts and issues."

Watson talks about William Melvin Kelley, the man who coined the word "woke," how the word came about and why he took on this project.

John L. Hanson is the producer and host of the nationally syndicated radio series In Black America. It’s heard on home station KUT at 10 p.m. Tuesdays and 6:30 a.m. Sundays — and weekly on close to 20 stations across the country. The weekly podcast of IBA, the only nationally broadcast Black-oriented public affairs radio program, is one of KUT’s most popular podcasts.