The Queen of Soul, Aretha Franklin, on Monday was awarded the Pulitzer Prize. She was bestowed with this special citation prize “for her indelible contribution to American music and culture for more than five decades,” according to a release, The Hindu reported.
Franklin is the first woman to receive the special recognition since 1930.
The superstar musician Franklin became the 12th musician, and first woman ever to receive a Pulitzer special award and citation.
Poynter reports states that Franklin is the first woman to receive the special recognition since 1930. Since its inception, 41 people and institutions have received the honour.
“The Pulitzer Prizes, and these special award citations, stand for work of breadth, excellence and consequence in making our society a better place to be,” said Neil Brown, Poynter’s president and a Pulitzer Prize board member. “Aretha Franklin’s contributions remain deep, inspiring and altogether fitting of such recognition,” he added.
Rolling Stone magazine rated her as the greatest singer of all time, recognising songs like ‘Respect’, ‘Chain Of Fools’ and (You Make Me Feel Like) ‘A Natural Woman’ as all time greats.
Franklin legacy has touched countless other women of colour artists. In honour of her work, Poynter’s Roy Peter Clark acknowledged more work by women of colour:
“My hope is that this prize to Aretha will accelerate a pattern of recognition by the Pulitzer Prizes. Going back a century, there were countless African-Americans and women who had little or no chance to win an award in any category because of their race or gender. The great poet Langston Hughes comes to mind. What if the Pulitzer folks began a concerted effort to repair such neglect and inequity by looking back every year and honoring those who — against many odds — contributed so much to American culture?” Clark expressed, Jezebel reprted.