American Book Awards

There are many writers of African descent on the list of winners at the American Book Awards 2021 announced on August 23, 2021.

The American Book Awards, from the Before Columbus Foundation, were created to provide recognition for outstanding literary achievement from the entire spectrum of America’s diverse literary community. The purpose of the awards, first hosted in 1980, is to recognize literary excellence without limitations or restrictions. There are no categories, no nominees, and therefore no losers. The award winners range from well-known and established writers to under-recognized authors and first works. There are no quotas for diversity, the winners list simply reflects it as a natural process. it is “a writers’ award given by other writers” and “there are no categories, no nominees, and therefore no losers.

The winners of African descent for 2021 are

  • Maisy Card, These Ghosts Are Family (Simon & Schuster)
  • Johanna Fernández, The Young Lords: A Radical History (University of North Carolina Press)
  • Randall Horton, {#289-128}: Poems (University of Kentucky)
  • Gerald Horne, The Dawning of the Apocalypse: The Roots of Slavery, White Supremacy, Settler Colonialism, and Capitalism in the Long Sixteenth Century (Monthly Review Press)
  • Judy Juanita, Manhattan my ass, you’re in Oakland (Equidistance Press)
  • William Melvin Kelley (author) Aiki Kelley (illustrator), Dunfords Travels Everywheres (Anchor Books)

Lifetime Achievement

  • Maryemma Graham

Walter & Lillian Lowenfels Award for Criticism:

  • Shana Redmond, Everything Man: The Form and Function of Paul Robeson (Duke University Press)

The 2021 American Book Award winners will be formally recognised at a ceremony on Sunday, September 19, 2021