Stephen King backtracks on diversity comments after criticism

NBC News | 1/14/2020 | Staff
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Stephen King appeared to backtrack on his recent comments about "never" considering "diversity in matters of art" after criticism from a number of prominent artists, including Ava DuVernay.

"The Shining" writer on Tuesday weighed in on the controversy that ensued after the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences nominated a nearly all-white slate for acting Oscars.

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"For me, the diversity issue did not come up," King, who is a voting member of the Academy, wrote on Twitter of his nominations for the best picture, best adapted screenplay and best original screenplay categories. "That said, I would never consider diversity in matters of art. Only quality. It seems to me that to do otherwise would be wrong."

King's remarks were quickly rebuffed, with many criticizing the novelist as being out of touch and "ignorant."

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"When you wake up, meditate, stretch, reach for your phone to check on the world and see a tweet from someone you admire that is so backward and ignorant you want to go back to bed," DuVernay, whose docuseries "When They See Us," recently won best limited series at the 2020 Critics Choice Awards.

Roxanne Gay, the award-winning author of "Bad Feminist" and "Hunger," also stated she was disappointed with King's comments.

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"As a fan, this is painful to read from you. It implies that diversity and quality cannot be synonymous," Gay tweeted. "They are not separate things. Quality is everywhere but most industries only believe in quality from one demographic."

Sarah Weinman, author of "The Real Lolita: The Kidnapping of Sally Horner and the Novel That Scandalized the World," added that her work and the work of other women crime writers might not...
(Excerpt) Read more at: NBC News
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