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Chicago Defender

Jackie Robinson, Public Intellectual

Monday and Tuesday of this week, PBS premieres a new Ken Burns miniseries, Jackie Robinson. I am excited by the prospect of a new work on Robinson’s life, primarily due to the tantalizing hope that Burns will spend time on Robinson’s post-baseball public life—and, according to this review in the New York Times, it looks like it will. Jackie Robinson led a publicly engaged life after his baseball career ended in 1956. In short, Mr. Robinson transitioned from baseball to, through a nationally syndicated column, the life of a public intellectual. Read more