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$625,000 'genius grants' go to Ocean Vuong and six other writers

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The MacArthur Foundation honours, which encourage winners to ‘continue to innovate’, also won by Valeria Luiselli, Lynda Berry and Emily Wilson

Ocean Vuong, the award-winning poet who came to the US with his family aged two as a refugee from Vietnam, is one of seven writers to be awarded a so-called “genius grant” of $625,000 (£504,000) by the MacArthur Foundation.

The no-strings-attached fellowships are intended to allow recipients to “continue to innovate, take risks, and pursue their vision”. Vuong was chosen alongside six other writers: graphic novelist Lynda Barry, cultural historian Saidiya Hartman, the Booker-longlisted author Valeria Luiselli, American historian Kelly Lytle Hernandez, literary scholar Jeffrey Miller and classicist Emily Wilson, who in 2017 was the first woman to publish a translation of Homer’s Odyssey in English.

Related: Ocean Vuong and the new Great American Novel - books podcast

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