Telegraph corrects story saying Cambridge University would drop white authors from reading lists

The Daily Telegraph has corrected a front-page story headlined: “Student forces Cambridge to drop white authors”.

Today’s page two correction states: “An Oct 25 article incorrectly stated that under proposals by academic staff in response to an open letter from students on ‘decolonising’ its English Faculty, Cambridge University will be forced to replace white authors with black writers.

“The proposals were in fact recommendations. Neither they nor the open letter called for the University to replace white authors with black ones and there are no plans to do so.”

The story reported on an open letter written by Lola Olufemi, Cambridge University Student Union’s women’s officer and signed by over 100 students, titled “Decolonising the English Faculty”.

Her photo also featured on the front page.

The letter said: “For too long, teaching English at Cambridge has encouraged a ‘traditional’ and ‘canonical’ approach that elevates white male authors at the expense of all others.

“What we can no longer ignore, however, is the fact that the curriculum, taken as a whole, risks perpetuating institutional racism.”

BBC presenter Samira Ahmed is among those to criticise the Telegraph coverage.

She said on Twitter: “Tiny Telegraph correction for a massive lie on the front page that incited trolling & threats against a young black woman. ”

Olufemi said she was flooded with racist and sexist abuse following the Telegraph article.

Yesterday afternoon the Telegraph published a follow up article on “10 BAME authors who should be on every reading list“.

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