Karen Attiah

Washington, D.C.

Columnist writing on international affairs, culture and human rights issues.

Education: Northwestern University, BA in communication studies, minor in African Studies; Columbia University, master's in international affairs

Karen Attiah is a columnist for The Washington Post and writes a weekly newsletter. She joined The Post in 2014 as a digital producer in the Opinions section. Attiah often writes on issues relating to race, gender and international politics, with a special interest in Africa. Previously, she reported as a freelancer for the Associated Press while based in the Caribbean. Attiah was the winner of the 2019 George Polk Award and was the 2019 Journalist of the Year from the National Association of Black Journalists.
Latest from Karen Attiah

Rihanna and Lupita shine bright like diamonds — but at what cost?

De Beers’s history in Africa ain’t great. Yet Black stars including Rihanna and Lupita Nyong’o keep signing up to help them hawk their wares.

March 17, 2023

Raquel Evita Saraswati and the racial impostor problem

A chief equity and inclusion officer encouraged people to believe that she was of Latina, South Asian and Arab descent is accused of being a fraud.

March 10, 2023

Black pain, Ghana’s gain?

Tulsa massacre survivors are granted citizenship in Ghana. Plus, a bit of fun for language nerds.

March 3, 2023

Naive hope is at the heart of Black History Month

This year’s observance took things to an especially absurd level.

February 24, 2023

It’s Ms. Rihanna ... if you’re nasty

The dancing, the breastplate, the crotch grab — Rihanna’s Super Bowl act was the ultimate flex.

February 17, 2023

Rihanna’s Super Bowl show was spectacular. And a huge letdown.

Not long ago, Rihanna took a firm stand against the NFL’s silencing of Black protest. Now? She has given the league a gift.

February 13, 2023

The case of the Dallas Zoo animals was engrossing — and so sad

In Dallas, we’ve been captivated by the saga of the leopard, the vulture and the missing monkeys.

February 10, 2023

Black History Month is, uh, not off to a great start

Just three days in, this month is already chock full of anti-Blackness.

February 3, 2023

The endless video loop of Black death is doing more harm than good

Increasingly, I find it less ethically correct to traffic in images of Black death for the sake of “awareness.”

February 1, 2023

Here’s what I think of Mike Pompeo’s craven smearing of Jamal Khashoggi

The former secretary of state has shown what it looks like when rock bottom has a trap door.

January 27, 2023