2020 Pulitzer Prize winners announced

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Writer Colson Whitehead reading at Lit. Cologne in 2019 (Photo: Horst Galuschka/ Getty)
Writer Colson Whitehead reading at Lit. Cologne in 2019 (Photo: Horst Galuschka/ Getty)

The 2020 Pulitzer Prize award ceremony was held remotely on 4 May, 2020.

In another first for the Pulitzer Prize, the organisation also introduced its inaugural radio news awards, with NPR's This American Life winning the first ever award for audio journalism for an episode titled "The Out Crowd". 

Channi Anand, Dar Yasin and Mukhtar Khan of Associated Press received recognition for their work in India, documenting the conflict in Kashmir.

Author of the acclaimed Underground Railroad, Colson Whitehead, took home the fiction award for his novel The Nickel Boys, making him the fourth writer to win the fiction award twice. Other writers in this enviable category are William Faulkner, Booth Tarkington and John Updike. The Nickel Boys, released in 2019 is based on the true story of a reform school in Florida which ran for 11 years, and was investigated for a number of atrocities after it shut down.

WATCH: Colson Whitehead in conversation about writing The Nickel Boys

A Strange Loop by queer, black playwright Michael R. Jackson is described by the New York Times as "a musical about a gay, black, musical-theater writer writing a musical about a gay, black, musical-theater writer". The daring musical took home the Pulitzer award for Drama, with the theatre-maker taking to social media to express his joy.

The Central Park Five by Anthony Davis, which won the Pulitzer for musical composition, is an opera with New York's own imprint of jazz running through the core of it. It tells the story of five black teenagers who were wrongfully imprisoned for the 1989 rape and assault of a jogger, even though there was no physical evidence to tie them to the crime. When They See Us, created by Ava Duvernay and released on Netflix in May, 2019 brought the case to mainstream attention again, following the release of 2012 documentary, The Central Park Five.

In this clip, Anthony Davis speaks about making and scoring Central Park Five.

Ida B. Wells, the civil rights activist and investigative journalist received a Pulitzer Prize citation. The activist and journalistic pioneer, who was born in 1862 in Mississippi, built a legacy founded upon civil rights, women's rights and truth-telling. Ida B. Wells receives this recognition 107 years after her passing on 25 March 1913.

*Compiled by Lindokuhle Nkosi

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