On March 21st President Biden presents the National Medal of Arts and National Humanities Medal. This award was supposed to be presented in 2021 but because of the pandemic, things got pushed back. There are 12 distinguished medal recipients including writers, historians, educators, and activists. Musicians like Glady’s Knight, Mindy Kaling, and Bruce Springsteen will receive an award.
The National Medal of Arts was established in 1984 and it is the highest award given by the United States government to artists and arts patrons. As part of this annual award, the President of the United States presents the National Medal of Arts to individuals or groups for their contributions to excellence, growth, and support. The National Humanities medal also honors individuals or organizations whose work has contributed to greater understanding and engagement with history and literature. The National Humanities Medal acknowledges efforts that have deepened understanding of the human experience or broadened citizens’ engagement with history and literature.
A few of the recipients who are receiving the National Medal of Arts award today are
Gladys Knight: Gladys Knight’s exceptional talent influenced musical genres—from rhythm and blues to gospel to pop—and inspired generations of artists, captivated by her soundtrack of a golden age in American music.
The International Association of Blacks in Dance: Through teaching, training, and performance, The International Association of Blacks in Dance promotes dance by people of African ancestry and origin, explores and exchanges art, spans cultures and generations, and enriches the dance culture of America.
Bruce Springsteen: One of our greatest performers and storytellers, Bruce Springsteen’s music celebrates our triumphs, heals our wounds, and gives us hope, capturing the unyielding spirit of what it means to be American.
Vera Wang: From the runway to red carpets to retail stores, Vera Wang’s modern designs and bridal collections express individualism and elegance, making beauty and style accessible to all.
Mindy Kaling: Imbued with humor and heart, Mindy Kaling’s work across television, film, and books inspires and delights—capturing and uplifting the experiences of women and girls across our Nation.
Some of the Recipients of the National Humanities Medals are :
Native America Calling: Through its interactive shows on the radio and online, Native America Calling educates the American public about Indigenous issues while preserving Indigenous history and culture to honor their contributions that strengthen the sacred Nation-to-Nation relationship.
Ann Patchett: With her best-selling novels and essays, and her bookstore, readers from around the world see themselves in the pages of Ann Patchett’s books that take people to places of the heart and feed the imagination of our Nation.
Amy Tan: By bravely exploring experiences of immigrant families, heritage, memories, and poignant struggles, Amy Tan’s writing makes sense of the present through the past and adds a ground-breaking narrative to the diverse sweep of American life and literature.
Tara Westover: Tara Westover’s memoirs of family, religion, and the transformative power of education, have moved millions of readers and served as a powerful example of how the humanities can set people—and a Nation—free.
live-streamed“The National Humanities Medal recipients have enriched our world through writing that moves and inspires us; scholarship that enlarges our understanding of the past; and through their dedication to educating, informing, and giving voice to communities and histories often overlooked,” said NEH Chair Shelly C. Lowe (Navajo). “I am proud to join President Biden in recognizing these distinguished leaders for their outstanding contributions to our nation’s cultural life.”
Written By: Karesha Graham