Kendrick Lamar Becomes First Hip Hop Artist to Win Pulitzer Prize
The 30 year old American rapper released his latest album Damn in April last year for which he won five Grammy awards. The album achieved Platinum in just a month after its release and sold more than a million copies in America. The album included raps that highlighted the racial issues the artist has faced throughout his life as well as the current racial atmosphere in USA.
An administrator of the Pulitzer Prize, Dana Canedy, said, “We are very proud of this selection. It means that the jury and its board judging system worked as it’s supposed to – the best work was awarded a Pulitzer Prize.” She went on to say, “It shines a light on hip-hop in a completely different way. This is a big moment for hip-hop music and a big moment for the Pulitzers.”
The Pulitzer Prize for music has never been won by a hip hop artist before, previous winners including jazz musicians Wynton Marsalis and Ornette Coleman, which is why the win is such a huge deal. Organizers of the honorable prize said that the album showcases “affecting vignettes capturing the complexity of modern African-American life.”