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Author Ta-Nehisi Coates At Harvard

Source: Paul Marotta / Getty


6 of the 24 masters minds honored with this year’s MacArthur fellowship are Black Americans.

Some prefer not to be called geniuses, but the winners of the MacArthur Foundation’s exclusive fellowship are unquestionably blessed.

The $625,000 is sent directly to individual recipients with no strings attached (except they tell everybody).

These are the only criteria:

1. Exceptional creativity

2. Promise for important future advances based on a track record of significant accomplishments

3. Potential for the Fellowship to facilitate subsequent creative work.

Meet the 2017 winners:

Jesmyn Ward, 40, fiction writer living in New Orleans

Tyshawn Sorey, 37, composer and musician living in Middletown, Connecticut

Nikole Hannah-Jones, 41, journalist living in New York City

Rhiannon Giddens, 40, singer, instrumentalist and songwriter living in Greensboro, N.C.

Dawoud Bey, 63, photographer and educator living in Chicago

Njideka Akunyili Crosby, 34, painter living in Los Angeles

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