100th Anniversary Pulitzer Prizes Go to Lin-Manuel Miranda’s ‘Hamilton’, Emily Nussbaum


The big winner of the 2016 Pulitzer Prize — or at least the one that everyone will remember — is Lin-Manuel Miranda’s Hamilton. Otherwise, The New Yorker had a strong showing with three winners: Emily Nussbaum (Criticism), Katheryn Schulz (Feature Writing), and William Finnegan (Biography or Autobiography for Barbarian Days: A Surfing Life).

The prize for fiction went to The Sympathizer by debut novelist Viet Thanh Nguyen (look for his nonfiction book, Nothing Ever Dies: Vietnam and the Memory of War, out this month). And the poetry prize went to Peter Balakian’s Ozone Journal.

The rest of the winners are listed below:


Public Service: Associated Press

For an investigation of severe labor abuses tied to the supply of seafood to American supermarkets and restaurants, reporting that freed 2,000 slaves, brought perpetrators to justice and inspired reforms.

Finalists: InsideClimate News; Tampa Bay Times

Breaking News Reporting: Los Angeles Times Staff

For exceptional reporting, including both local and global perspectives, on the shooting in San Bernardino and the terror investigation that followed.

Finalists: The Baltimore Sun Staff; The Post and Courier Staff, Charleston, SC

Investigative Reporting: Leonora LaPeter Anton and Anthony Cormier of the Tampa Bay Times and Michael Braga of the Sarasota Herald-Tribune

For a stellar example of collaborative reporting by two news organizations that revealed escalating violence and neglect in Florida mental hospitals and laid the blame at the door of state officials.

Finalists: Jessica Silver-Greenberg, Michael Corkery and Robert Gebeloff of The New York Times; Tom Robbins of The Marshall Project; and Michael Schwirtz and Michael Winerip of The New York Times

Explanatory Reporting: T. Christian Miller of ProPublica and Ken Armstrong of The Marshall Project

For a startling examination and exposé of law enforcement’s enduring failures to investigate reports of rape properly and and to comprehend the traumatic effects on its victims.

Finalists: Colin Woodard of Portland Press Herald/Maine Sunday Telegram; Jonathan D. Rockoff, Joseph Walker, Jeanne Whalen, Peter Loftus and Ed Silverman of The Wall Street Journal

Local Reporting: Michael LaForgia, Cara Fitzpatrick and Lisa Gartner of Tampa Bay Times

For exposing a local school board’s culpability in turning some county schools into failure factories, with tragic consequences for the community. (Moved by the Board from the Public Service category, where it was also entered.)

Finalists: Chris Serres, Glenn Howatt and David Joles of Star Tribune, Minneapolis, MN; Michael Sallah, Emily Michot, Joanna Zuckerman Bernstein and Sohail Al-Jamea of Miami Herald; Sarah Maslin Nir of The New York Times

National Reporting: The Washington Post Staff

For its revelatory initiative in creating and using a national database to illustrate how often and why the police shoot to kill and who the victims are most likely to be.

Finalists: Abrahm Lustgarten, Al Shaw, Jeff Larson, Naveena Sadasivam and David Sleight of ProPublica; Jason Cherkis of The Huffington Post

International Reporting: Alissa J. Rubin of The New York Times

For thoroughly reported and movingly written accounts giving voice to Afghan women who were forced to endure unspeakable cruelties.

Finalists: The New York Times Staff; Tom Wright, Bradley Hope, Simon Clark, Mia Lamar and James Hookway of The Wall Street Journal

Feature Writing: Kathryn Schulz of The New Yorker

For an elegant scientific narrative of the rupturing of the Cascadia fault line, a masterwork of environmental reporting and writing.

Finalists: Eli Saslow of The Washington Post; N.R. Kleinfeld of The New York Times

Commentary: Farah Stockman of The Boston Globe

For extensively reported columns that probe the legacy of busing in Boston and its effect on education in the city with a clear eye on ongoing racial contradictions.

Finalists: Nicholas D. Kristof of The New York Times; Steve Lopez of Los Angeles Times

Criticism: Emily Nussbaum of The New Yorker

For television reviews written with an affection that never blunts the shrewdness of her analysis or the easy authority of her writing.

Finalists: Hilton Als of The New Yorker; Manohla Dargis of The New York Times

Editorial Writing: John Hackworth of Sun Newspapers, Charlotte Harbor, FL

For fierce, indignant editorials that demanded truth and change after the deadly assault of an inmate by corrections officers.

Finalists: Andrew Green, Tricia Bishop, Peter Jensen and Glenn McNatt of The Baltimore Sun; Editorial Board of The New York Times

Editorial Cartooning: Jack Ohman of The Sacramento Bee

For cartoons that convey wry, rueful perspectives through sophisticated style that combines bold line work with subtle colors and textures.

Finalists: Matt Davies of Newsday, Long Island, NY; Steve Sack of Star Tribune, Minneapolis

Breaking News Photography: Mauricio Lima, Sergey Ponomarev, Tyler Hicks and Daniel Etter of The New York Times

For photographs that captured the resolve of refugees, the perils of their journeys and the struggle of host countries to take them in.

Photography Staff of Thomson Reuters

For gripping photographs, each with its own voice, that follow migrant refugees hundreds of miles across uncertain boundaries to unknown destinations.

Finalists: Andrew Burton, Chip Somodevilla, Patrick Smith and Drew Angerer of Getty Images

Feature Photography: Jessica Rinaldi of The Boston Globe

For the raw and revealing photographic story of a boy who strives to find his footing after abuse by those he trusted.

Finalists: Jessica Rinaldi of The Boston Globe; Photography Staff of The Post and Courier, Charleston, SC

Letters, Drama & Music:

Fiction: The Sympathizer, by Viet Thanh Nguyen (Grove Press)

A layered immigrant tale told in the wry, confessional voice of a “man of two minds” — and two countries, Vietnam and the United States.

Finalists:Get in Trouble: Stories, by Kelly Link (Random House); Maud’s Line, by Margaret Verble (Houghton Mifflin Harcourt)

Drama: Hamilton, by Lin-Manuel Miranda

A landmark American musical about the gifted and self-destructive founding father whose story becomes both contemporary and irresistible.

Finalists: Gloria, by Branden Jacobs-Jenkins; The Humans, by Stephen Karam

History: Custer’s Trials: A Life on the Frontier of a New America, by T.J. Stiles (Alfred A. Knopf)

A rich and surprising new telling of the journey of the iconic American soldier whose death turns out not to have been the main point of his life. (Moved by the Board from the Biography category.)

Finalists: Marching Home: Union Veterans and Their Unending Civil War, by Brian Matthew Jordan (Liveright/Norton); Target Tokyo: Jimmy Doolittle and the Raid That Avenged Pearl Harbor, by James M. Scott (W.W. Norton & Company); The Pentagon’s Brain: An Uncensored History of DARPA, America’s Top-Secret Military Research Agency, by Annie Jacobsen (Little, Brown & Company)

Biography or Autobiography: Barbarian Days: A Surfing Life, by William Finnegan (Penguin Press)

A finely crafted memoir of a youthful obsession that has propelled the author through a distinguished writing career.

Finalists: Custer’s Trials: A Life on the Frontier of a New America, by T.J. Stiles (Alfred A. Knopf); The Light of the World: A Memoir, by Elizabeth Alexander (Grand Central Publishing)

Poetry: Ozone Journal, by Peter Balakian (University of Chicago Press)

Poems that bear witness to the old losses and tragedies that undergird a global age of danger and uncertainty.

Finalists: Alive: New and Selected Poems, by Elizabeth Willis (NYRB); Four-Legged Girl, by Diane Seuss (Graywolf Press)

General Nonfiction: Black Flags: The Rise of ISIS, by Joby Warrick (Doubleday)

A deeply reported book of remarkable clarity showing how the flawed rationale for the Iraq War led to the explosive growth of the Islamic State.

Finalists: Between the World and Me, by Ta-Nehisi Coates (Spiegel & Grau); If the Oceans Were Ink: An Unlikely Friendship and a Journey to the Heart of the Quran, by Carla Power (Henry Holt)

Music: In for a Penny, In for a Pound, by Henry Threadgill (Pi Recordings)

Recording released on May 26, 2015 by Zooid, a highly original work in which notated music and improvisation mesh in a sonic tapestry that seems the very expression of modern American life (Pi Recordings).

Finalists: The Blind Banister, by Timo Andres (Andres & Sons Bakery); The Mechanics: Six from the Shop Floor, by Carter Pann (Blue Griffin)