Celebrated journalist Jemele Hill earnestly dishes about her career, her new memoir and being from Detroit in a recently-published interview.
Jemele Hill is never one to shy away from relating the facts (especially when jabbing former presidents). Fresh off of the release of her new memoir, Uphill, the former ESPN journalist and host isn’t resting on her laurels. In a new interview for NewsOne, she opens up about how the memoir helped her explore her life and career to this point.
The conversation begins with Hill giving an overall take on how the tour for her memoir went. “Selling a book is so much different than any other thing that I’ve done, selling and promoting a book, I should say,” she began. “So it was pretty intense because I had not only book events but a ton of media appearances to do. So these were some pretty long and arduous days, but it was really rewarding to see upfront and personal, like how people responded to the book and some of the stories that I told in the book.”
Hill also spoke about how being a native of Detroit, Michigan instilled in her a distinct sense of pride and fueled her inner spirit and ambition. “That’s why certainly no one from Detroit is any stranger to having to work hard, having to hustle. It’s just kind of built into our bones.”
She touched upon the struggles that the city has experienced from crime to the crack epidemic and how negative stereotypes made residents more determined and prideful: “And because we knew that’s how people thought of us, it only made us want to put on for the city even harder and love it even harder. So when people meet people from Detroit, the level of pride and affection we have in our city, I feel like it’s different. I know everybody is proud of where they come from, but we probably take it to an annoying level, different level. Detroit is definitely in the building, OK? And we’ll tell you about the entire history of Detroit.”
The 47-year-old also laid bare how working on the memoir highlighted the relationship between her and her mother and helped them navigate lingering rough patches. “But us being able to have that conversation for the memoir, it was very cleansing and freeing for both of us. And me understanding more of some things now about her life, knowing her full story that I didn’t understand then, it helped me have more grace with those actions than at the time I considered to be very damaging and hurtful.”
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