Pulitzer-winning author Colson Whitehead is 2024 CCNY Langston Hughes Medalist

NEW YORK, Jan. 11, 2024 /PRNewswire/ — Two-time Pulitzer Prize winner Colson Whitehead is this year’s City College of New York’s Langston Hughes Medal recipient. He’ll receive the Medal at CCNY’s 45th annual Langston Hughes Festival on Feb. 1.

The medal is awarded to highly distinguished writers from throughout the African American diaspora. It recognizes honorees for their impressive works of poetry, fiction, drama, autobiography and critical essays that help to celebrate the memory and tradition of Langston Hughes. Past award winners include:

  • James Baldwin;
  • Gwendolyn Brooks;
  • Toni Morrison;
  • August Wilson;
  • Maya Angelou;
  • Octavia Butler;
  • Zadie Smith;
  • Michael Eric Dyson;
  • Rita Dove;
  • Jamaica Kincaid and
  • Lynn Nottage.

Whitehead won his first Pulitzer Prize in 2017 for his novel “The Underground Railroad.” A #1 New York Times bestseller, it also earned him the National Book Award and the Carnegie Medal for Fiction.

His second Pulitzer came two years later for “The Nickel Boys,” a novel inspired by the Arthur G. Dozier School for Boys in Florida. It also scooped the Kirkus Prize and the Orwell Prize for Political Fiction.

His other notable books include:

His first novel, “The Intuitionist,” a finalist for the PEN/Hemingway Award and winner of the Quality Paperback Book Club’s New Voices Award;

John Henry Days,” finalist for the National Book Critics Circle Award, the Los Angeles Times Fiction Award, and the Pulitzer Prize. It won the Young Lions Fiction Award and the Anisfield-Wolf Book Award;

Apex Hides the Hurt,” PEN/Oakland Award winner;

Sag Harbor,” finalist PEN/Faulkner award and the Hurston/Wright Legacy Award; and

Harlem Shuffle” (2021), and “Crook Manifesto” (2023), the first two books in his Harlem Trilogy.

Whitehead’s reviews, essays, and fiction have appeared in a number of publications, such as the New York Times, The New Yorker, New York Magazine, Harper’s and Granta.

His honors include a MacArthur Fellowship, a Guggenheim Fellowship, a Whiting Writers Award, the Dos Passos Prize, and a fellowship at the Cullman Center for Scholars and Writers.

In 2018, New York State named him its New York State Author, and in 2020 the Library of Congress awarded him its Prize for American Fiction.

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CONTACT: Jay Mwamba, [email protected]

SOURCE City College of New York, Office of Institutional Advancement and Communications

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