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Rachel Kaadzi Ghansah

Rachel Kaadzi Ghansah Essayist

The basics
Quick Facts
Intro Essayist
Occupations Writer Essayist
Type Literature
Gender female
Birth 1982
The details

Rachel Kaadzi Ghansah (born 1982) is a contributing writer at the New York Times Magazine and author of the forthcoming The Explainers and the Explorers (Scribner 2017) on "how black America will define itself in the 21st century." In 2014, Ghansah's profile in The Believer of elusive comedian Dave Chappelle was a National Magazine Award finalist and collected in The Best American Nonrequired Reading as well as The Believer's anthology Read Harder. The New York Times reviewed her essay's appearance in that collection as "more forceful work...[a] searching profile." Ghansah grew up in Philadelphia. Early in her career she worked for The Roots and dream hampton before becoming a public school teacher. She graduated from the Columbia MFA program in writing in 2011, and has taught at Columbia University, Bard College, and Eugene Lang College. In addition to notice for the Chappelle piece, Ghansah has drawn particular recognition for her longform profiles of subjects like Kendrick Lamar, Chirlane McCray, and Toni Morrison—which Flavorwire recommended as "necessary, even recuperative"—as well as essays on Beyoncé's fans, Jimi Hendrix's Electric Lady Studios, and James Baldwin's historic home in southern France. KQED called Ghansah "one of the most brilliant essayists writing in America today." In an Elle UK feature, "Zadie Smith On The Young Writer Who Teaches Her Everything," novelist Smith said Ghansah "always understood that to make your writing stand out online you...just need to write better than everyone else. And she does."

Selected Works

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