2021 Winner of the Pulitzer Prize for Biography or Autobiography
by Les Payne and Tamara Payne
Les Payne, the renowned Pulitzer Prize-winning investigative journalist, embarked in 1990 on a nearly thirty-year-long quest to create an unprecedented portrait of Malcolm X, one that would separate fact from fiction. The result is this historic, National Book Award-winning biography, which interweaves previously unknown details of Malcolm X's life--from harrowing Depression-era vignettes to a moment-by-moment retelling of the 1965 assassination--into an extraordinary account that contextualizes Malcolm X's life against the wider currents of American history. Bookended by essays from Tamara Payne, Payne's daughter and primary researcher, who heroically completed the biography after her father's death in 2018, The Dead Are Arising affirms the centrality of Malcolm X to the African American freedom struggle.
The Pulitzer Prize has been awarded by Columbia University each spring since 1917. The awards are chosen by a board of jurors for Journalism, Letters, Music and Drama. The awards for Letters include Nonfiction, Poetry, Biography or Autobiography, History, and Fiction.