In summer 2019, the field of communication studies imploded, owing largely to a controversy surrounding the yearly Distinguished Scholar Award presented by the National Communication Association (NCA). Of the 80 awardees from the past three decades, only one was an academic of color. My field was a few decades delayed in its rage over this obvious display of structural racism and bigotry, but the rage was overwhelmingly welcomed. As a card-carrying member, I offered to open one issue of Departures in Critical Qualitative Research (DCQR) for a special issue on “Merit, Whiteness, and Privilege” in communication studies and related disciplines. Thanks to the concerted efforts of three guest...

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