Tuesday, September 29, 2015

Ta-Nehisi Coates is a Genius

Congratulations to Ta-Nehisi or as I blogged only last week about this writer--the man--who has been awarded a MacArthur Foundation Genius Award which carries with it a huge cash prize.

I remember when I first heard him speak at an AWP panel. (And, lets be honest, his body of work is not overwhelming. He has not written a novel and had at the time a published memoir The Beautiful Struggle). But it was his non-fiction, his essays, his opinion pieces that spoke the loudest. Not like Trump loud, but a methodical common-sensical deliberate straightforward plain talk journalism that brought many more people into the "conversation." His writing goes beyond the echo chambers, the news media chatter, and the polarized position points that we've all become accustomed to.

Genuine.

In the article link above about the award the committee in fact cited his unique blend of "personal reflection and historical scholarship" about race relations in the US. The foundation highlighted his 2014 essay, The Case for Reparations, which it said "prompted a national conversation" about the treatment of black Americans.

Congratulations to a young man who deserves this award for his work and also representing under-reported views in the media. Thank you. You're the man.


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