2012 Hillman Prize for Opinion & Analysis Journalism | Hillman Foundation

Hillman Prizes

2012 Hillman Prize for Opinion & Analysis Journalism

Marcy Wheeler

Ta-Nehisi Coates

The Atlantic

Ta-Nehisi Coates is a senior editor at The Atlantic, where he blogs for the site and writes for the magazine. Coates is also the author of the memoir, The Beautiful Struggle. He lives in New York with his wife and son.

Ta-Nehisi Coates writes about politics, history, and culture.

“Coates is one of the most elegant and sharp observers of race in America,” said Hillman judge Hendrik Herztberg, “He is an upholder of universal values, a brave and compassionate writer who challenges his readers to transcend narrow self-definitions and focus on shared humanity.”

Coates is famous for his eclectic and erudite approach to blogging. On any given day, a reader might be treated to a post on the latest gaffe in the Republican primary followed by a reflection on the philosophical themes in George Eliot’s Middlemarch. In 2011, he covered police brutality at Occupy protests, the execution of Troy Davis, the late-19th-Century rift between feminists and early civil rights activists, the Penn State sex abuse scandal, and the importance of empathy in public discourse.

Coates’ blog was named one of TIME Magazine’s 25 Best Blogs of 2011.

He is the author of a memoir, “The Beautiful Struggle.”