Acclaimed Poet and Playwright Claudia Rankine

About Claudia Rankine

Claudia Rankine wears a long-sleeved beige top and iridescent purple, mid-length skirt. She sitss on a goldenrod sofa with rust and chocolate colored throw pillows. She rests her chin on her right hand, with her elbow against her knee.


Claudia Rankine is a past recipient of a MacArthur “Genius Grant” and the author of five books of poetry, including Citizen: An American Lyric and Don’t Let Me Be Lonely; three plays including HELP, which premiered in March 2020 (The Shed, NYC), and The White Card, which premiered in February 2018 (ArtsEmerson/ American Repertory Theater) and was published by Graywolf Press in 2019; and numerous video collaborations. Her recent collection of essays, Just Us: An American Conversation, was published by Graywolf Press in 2020. She is also the co-editor of several anthologies including The Racial Imaginary: Writers on Race in the Life of the Mind. In 2016, Rankine co-founded The Racial Imaginary Institute (TRII). Among her numerous awards and honors, Rankine is the recipient of the Bobbitt National Prize for Poetry, the Poets & Writers’ Jackson Poetry Prize, and fellowships from the Guggenheim Foundation, the Lannan Foundation, the MacArthur Foundation, United States Artists, and the National Endowment of the Arts. A former Chancellor of the Academy of American Poets, Claudia Rankine joined the New York University as a Professor of Creative Writing in Fall 2021.