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Four Writers Named to 2015 MacArthur 'Genius' Class

Ta-Nehisi Coates - peoplewhowrite

Ta-Nehisi Coates

Ta-Nehisi Coates, Ben Lerner, Lin-Manuel Miranda, and Ellen Bryant Voigt have been inducted into the MacArthur Foundation’s 2015 Fellows Class, alongside 20 other ‘Geniuses’.

As National Correspondent at The Atlantic, Coates has written a number of illuminating articles about the impact of race and racism in American life including the 2013 National Magazine Award Winning “Fear of a Black President” and 2014’s “The Case for Reparations” which earned the 2015 Harriet Beecher Stowe Center Prize for Writing to Advance Social Justice. His most recent book Between the World and Me, released in July 2015 and shortlisted for a 2015 National Book Award, was an instant bestseller. Last week, Coates and comic book icon Marvel announced Coates will pen a new Black Panther series.

Ben Lerner is the author of the novels Leaving the Atocha Station and 10:04, and the poetry collections The Lichtenberg Figures, Angle of Yaw, and Mean Free Path, among other projects. Leaving the Atocha Station earned the runner-up honor for the 2013 Sami Rohr Prize for Jewish Literature and made the shortlist for the 2013 James Tait Black Prize10:04 was shortlisted for the 2nd Annual Folio Prize. 

The playwright behind 2007 Broadway hit In the Heights and the 2015 release Hamilton, Lin-Manuel Miranda is also an actor, composer, and lyricist whose credits include Bring It On: The Musical, tick, tick…BOOM!Merrily We Roll Along, and “21 Chump Street,” for This American Life.

Ellen Bryant Voigt has authored eight poetry collections Claiming Kin, Forces of Plenty, KyrieThe Lotus Flowers, Two Trees, Shadow of Heaven, Messenger: New and Selected Poems 1976-2006, and Headwaters.

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