Atlantic contributor Ta-Nehisi Coates has been awarded a “Genius Grant” of $625,000 by the MacArthur Foundation, the organization announced early Tuesday.
“Writing without shallow polemic and in a measured style, Coates addresses complex and challenging issues such as racial identity, systemic racial bias, and urban policing,” the MacArthur Foundation said in a statement, crediting Coates with “bring[ing] personal reflection and historical scholarship to bear on America’s most contested issues.”
Coates, a prominent African-American commentator on racial issues, is the author of The Beautiful Struggle and Between the World and Me and winner of a 2013 National Magazine Award for a feature story on President Barack Obama. Most recently, Coates wrote about the black family in the age of mass incarceration.
“I’m delighted that the MacArthur Foundation has reached the same conclusion about Ta-Nehisi Coates that his colleagues and readers at The Atlantic have held for many years,” James Bennet, editor in chief of The Atlantic, said in a statement. “His genius is a rare combination of brilliance and singular vision joined to fearless intellectual honesty and boundless curiosity about what the rest of the world thinks, and why.”