Meet the Black Women Named MacArthur "Geniuses"

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This morning the MacArthur Foundation announced its latest class of fellows. Each fellow is awarded a grant (often called a "genius" grant) of $125,000 for six years. The money is given without restriction to help fund the work of the 24 awardees. This year, four Black women, Njideka Akunyili Crosby, Rihannon Giddens, Nikole Hannah-Jones, and Jesmyn Ward, were named geniuses. Take a look at their work.
Painter Njideka Akunyili Crosby

"Visualizing the complexities of globalization and transnational identity in works that layer paint, photographic imagery, prints, and collage elements."

Singer, Instrumentalist, and Songwriter Rhiannon Giddens
"Reclaiming African American contributions to folk and country music and bringing to light new connections between music from the past and the present."

Journalist Nikole Hannah-Jones

"Chronicling the persistence of racial segregation in American society, particularly in education, and reshaping national conversations around education reform."

Fiction Writer Jesmyn Ward
"Exploring the enduring bonds of community and familial love among poor African Americans of the rural South against a landscape of circumscribed possibilities and lost potential."