Novelist Colson Whitehead has won his second Pulitzer Prize for fiction, this time for his book, “The Nickel Boys.” With this win, he has become the fourth novelist after Booth Tarkington, William Faulkner, and John Updike to ever win two Pulitzers for fiction.
“The Nickel Boys” is based on a fictional account of abuse at a real juvenile reform school for boys in Florida called the Dozier School, The Daily Beast reported.
Whitehead, a 50-year-old African-American writer from New York, won the 2017 prize in the same category for his book, “The Underground Railroad.” The Harvard graduate is the author of six novels including his debut work, the 1999 novel “The Intuitionist.”
The Pulitzer committee praised “The Nickel Boys” for its “spare and devastating exploration of abuse at a reform school in Jim Crow-era Florida that is ultimately a powerful tale of human perseverance, dignity, and redemption,” The BBC reported.
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Also winning a Pulitzer Prize, Nikole Hannah-Jones won the commentary award for “one of the most talked-about media projects of 2019, the New York Times Magazine’s “The 1619 Project”. Hannah-Jones was awarded for writing the opening essay in the project, which commemorated 400 years since the first 20-to-30 enslaved Africans arrived in what would become the U.S.
A posthumous special citation was awarded to African-American civil rights activist and early champion of investigative journalism, Ida B Wells, who died in 1931. She was honored by the Pulitzer committee for her “outstanding and courageous reporting on lynching,” the BBC reported.