Karen Russell and Donald Antrim among 2013 MacArthur Fellows

October 1, 2013

The MacArthur Foundation announced twenty-four recipients for the 2013 MacArthur “Genius Grant” Fellowships, which now come with the recently increased $625,000 award, distributed over five years. Writers Donald Antrim and Karen Russell along with playwright Tarell McCraney, comprise the list of 2013 literary nominations. This year’s group ranged in professions from Paleobotanist, Medieval Historian, Materials Scientist, Statistician, Agricultural Ecologist, Neuroscientist, Immigration Lawyer, and Composer, to Playwright, and Author. Cecilia Conrad, Vice President of the MacArthur Fellows Program said of the winners, “This year’s class of MacArthur Fellows is an extraordinary group of individuals who collectively reflect the breadth and depth of American creativity, are artists, social innovators, scientists, and humanists who are working to improve the human condition and to preserve and sustain our natural and cultural heritage. Their stories should inspire each of us to consider our own potential to contribute our talents for the betterment of humankind.” The Fellows are chosen by nominators selected by the MacArthur Fellows Program, and the nominations are evaluated by a selection committee. The Fellows Program was initiated in 1981.

Karen Russell, thirty-two, has had short stories published in The New Yorker, Granta, Zoetrope, and Oxford American, and her books include the short story collection St. Lucy’s Home for Girls Raised by Wolves, the novel Swamplandia! (a finalist for the Pulitzer prize), and her recent short story collection Vampires in the Lemon Grove. Donald Antrim, fifty-five, is an associate professor in the Writing Program at Columbia University. His books include The Verificationist and The Hundred Brothers as well as The Afterlife: A Memoir. Tarell McCraney, thirty-two, was the International Writer in Residence for the Royal Shakespeare Company, where he remains an associate artist, and a Hodder Fellow at the Lewis Center for the Arts at Princeton University. Among the plays he’s authored are well-known titles The Brother/Sister Plays, Head of Passes, and Choir Boy.

Past MacArthur Fellows with literary arts backgrounds include prose writers Junot Diaz, Dinaw Mengestu, George Saunders, Patricia Hampl, David Foster Wallace, Yiyun Li, Stuart Dybek, Edward P. Jones, and poets Kay Ryan, Heather McHugh, C.D. Wright, Anne Carson, and Campbell McGrath.

For more information see: http://www.macfound.org/fellows/class/2013/

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