On October 6, award-winning author Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie will receive the W.E.B Du Bois Medal from Harvard University. Chimamanda, who previously served as a Harvard Radcliffe Institute Fellow and was the 2018 Harvard College Class Day Speaker, is making another trip back to Harvard (2011-2012).
The highest honor bestowed by Harvard University in the area of African and African American studies is the W.E.B Du Bois Medal. Oprah Winfrey, Maya Angelou, Muhammad Ali, Steven Spielberg, Ava Duvernay, and Chinua Achebe are just a few of the honorees from the past.
Chimamanda has received global recognition for her work, which translated into over thirty languages and won numerous awards and prizes.
She occupies a unique position combining a number of attributes. The New York Times T Magazine in its 2017 ‘Greats’ issue, described her as ‘one of those rarest of people: a celebrated novelist who has also become a leading public intellectual’. Chimamanda is also a fashion and beauty icon and continuously promotes Nigerian designers, including through her ‘Wear Nigerian’ initiative.
Barack Obama called her “one of the world’s great contemporary writers”; and Hillary Clinton has written that “she has the rare ability to sum up even the biggest societal problems swiftly and incisively”.
Chimamanda has received 16 honorary doctorate degrees from some of the world leading universities.