One Black Scholar Among the Nine New Fellows of the American Academy of Arts and Letters

The American Academy of Arts and Letters is an exclusive club. Membership is restricted to 250 individuals. New members are elected only when places open due to the death of members. As is the case with the other honorary societies, there are no official statistics on the current racial makeup of the membership of the American Academy of Arts and Letters. However, independent analysis of the membership list by JBHE concluded that at the present time 14 of the 250 members, or 5.6 percent, are black.

Poet Yusef Komunyakaa of New York University is the only  African American among the nine new members elected this year.