University of Pittsburgh
March 17, 2017

Author Ta-Nehisi Coates to Speak at Pitt

Literary reading by noted writer and activist is part of Pitt’s 2016–17 Pittsburgh Contemporary Writers Series
Contact:  412-624-4147

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PITTSBURGH—Ta-Nehisi Coates, outspoken social activist and New York Times bestselling author, will deliver a literary reading at Pitt on March 20. Part of the University’s Pittsburgh Contemporary Writers Series, the reading will begin at 6:30 p.m. in the Assembly Room of the William Pitt Union, 3959 Fifth Ave., Oakland.

Coates is best known for Between the World and Me (Spiegel and Grau, 2015), which won the 2015 National Book Award in Ta-Nehisi Coates, photo credit to Nina SubinNonfiction. Written as a letter to the author’s teenage son, the book was praised as a “searing meditation on what it means to be Black in America,” in The New York Times. The book also won the 2016 PEN/Diamonstein-Spielvogel Award for the Art of the Essay and was a finalist for the 2016 Pulitzer Prize for General Nonfiction.

The Beautiful Struggle (Spiegel and Grau, 2008), Coates’ debut memoir, received wide praise in such publications as the Kirkus Review, the Los Angeles Times, and Publishers Weekly. Coates also has penned several issues of Marvel Comics’ Black Panther comic book series. As a journalist, Coates currently serves as a national correspondent for The Atlantic, where he primarily writes about culture, politics, and social issues.

Coates is the recipient of Pitt’s 2016–17 William Block Sr. Award. Named for the longtime publisher of the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette, the designation recognizes the career accomplishments of esteemed poets and writers. Coates also was recently named one of TIME Magazine’s 100 Most Influential People of 2016 and won a 2015 MacArthur Fellowship — sometimes called the “genius grant” — from the John D. and Catherine T. MacArthur Foundation.

The University of Pittsburgh’s Writing Program within its Department of English and University Store on Fifth cosponsor the 2016–17 Pittsburgh Contemporary Writers Series. For more information, contact 412-624-6508.


Ta-Nehisi Coates, photo credit to Nina Subin