This morning the MacArthur Foundation named the recipients of the 2014 MacArthur Fellowship, commonly referred to as the “genius grants.” The class includes four visionary members of the African-American community whose work, discoveries, and ideas are advancing their fields and our understanding of our world. The MacArthur Fellowship is a “no strings attached” award that comes with a stipend of $625,000, paid out in equal quarterly installments over five years. This year’s fellows are:
Jennifer Eberhardt, a social psychologist investigating the subtle, unconscious ways people racially code and categorize others, with a particular focus on how race and visual perceptions of people affect policing and criminal sentencing.
Rick Lowe, a public artist using art to reimagine and revitalize struggling communities. His program has transformed derelict properties in Houston’s predominantly African American Third Ward into a visionary arts venue and community center. He has since begun similar work in other cities, including current projects in Dallas and Philadelphia.
Steve Coleman, a jazz composer and saxophonist infusing traditional jazz with an eclectic range of other musical styles, including music from West Africa, South India, Brazil, and Cuba.
Terrance Hayes, a poet crafting musical, almost improvisational verse that delves into issues of race, gender, current events, and family. He often uses humorous wordplay and references to pop culture, including poems that speak in the voices of David Bowie, Jorge Luis Borges, and Strom Thurmond.
To see the list of 2013 African American MacArthur Fellows, click here.
article by Lori Lakin Hutcherson (follow @lakinhutcherson)