UCR Author Wins Guggenheim Fellowship

Creative writing professor Emily Rapp Black is one of 173 scholars, artists, and scientists honored nationwide

Emily Rapp Black

Emily Rapp Black has won a prestigious Guggenheim Fellowship.

RIVERSIDE, California – Novelist Emily Rapp Black, an assistant professor of creative writing at the University of California, Riverside, has been awarded a prestigious Guggenheim Fellowship.

The John Simon Guggenheim Memorial Foundation awarded 173 Guggenheim Fellowships today to a diverse group of scholars, artists, and scientists from a group of nearly 3,000 applicants. The fellowships are awarded “on the basis of prior achievement and exceptional promise,” the foundation said in announcing the recipients in New York City. This year marks the 93rd year of competition for the awards.

“It’s exciting to name 173 new Guggenheim Fellows,” said Edward Hirsch, president of the foundation. “These artists and writers, scholars and scientists, represent the best of the best. Each year since 1925, the Guggenheim Foundation has bet everything on the individual, and we’re thrilled to continue to do so with this wonderfully talented and diverse group. It’s an honor to be able to support these individuals to do the work they were meant to do.”

Rapp Black’s award brings to 88 the number of Guggenheim Fellowships presented to UC Riverside scholars since the campus opened in 1954. Guggenheim recipients in 2017 will receive approximately $50,000 each to support their research.

Emily Rapp Black teaches and writes around subjects related to disability studies, feminist theology, medical narratives, medical ethics, and the literature of embodiment, trauma, and recovery. She is active in the cultural dialogue around end of life care, quality of life, and pediatric hospice care. She is the author of “Poster Child: A Memoir” and “The Still Point of the Turning World,” which was a New York Times bestseller and a finalist for the PEN USA Award in Nonfiction. Her book-length lyric essay, “Casa Azul Cripple,” examines the intersection of art, disability, sex, and fetish through the life and work of Mexican artist Frida Kahlo, and is forthcoming from the New York Review of Books/NottingHill Editions in 2018. Her work has appeared in Vogue, the New York Times, Alcalde, Lenny Letter, Reader’s Digest, Los Angeles Times, O, the Oprah Magazine, London Times-Style, Salon, Slate, Modern Loss, the Wall Street Journal, and many other publications, academic journals, and essay anthologies. Since 2012, she has been a regular book reviewer for the Boston Globe. She is currently at work on a book that reexamines the ancient notion of resilience for a modern world, and a novel about two grieving people on opposite sides of the world who become connected through a shared experience of the afterlife.

Since its establishment in 1925, the John Simon Guggenheim Memorial Foundation has granted more than $350 million in fellowships to over 18,000 individuals, among whom are scores of Nobel laureates, Fields Medalists, Turing Award winners, poets laureate, members of the various national academies, winners of the Pulitzer Prize, and other important, internationally recognized honors.

This year’s recipients represent 49 scholarly disciplines and artistic fields, 64 academic institutions, 27 states and the District of Columbia, and three Canadian provinces. They range in age from 27 to 79.

According to the foundation, the Guggenheim Fellowship program remains an important source of support for artists, scholars in the humanities and social sciences, and scientific researchers. The foundation was established by U.S. Sen. Simon Guggenheim and his wife, Olga, as a memorial to a son who died April 26, 1922.

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Emily Rapp Black
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