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Three authors with links to Canada are among this year’s recipients of Windham-Campbell Prizes, for which winners each receive US$175,000 cash awards.

Cultural critic and York University professor Christina Sharpe, as well as Toronto-based poet M. NourbeSe Philip and U.K.-based Jen Hadfield, who has Canadian citizenship, are among the winners.

The prizes are designed to enable artists to “focus on their creative practice independent of financial concerns,” prize officials announced Tuesday.

The other winners are poet-critic Hanif Abdurraqib, fiction writers Deirdre Madden and Kathryn Scanlan, playwright Christopher Chen and dramatist Sonya Kelly.

“Each year, I feel incredibly honoured to call the eight recipients: to be the messenger delivering the entirely unexpected and life-changing news that they have been awarded $175,000. It is clear – now, more than ever – how challenging working in the creative industries, around the world, can be,” prize director Michael Kelleher said in a statement.

The awards were established in 2011 at Yale University endowed by the estates of writer Donald Windham and actor Sandy Campbell. Previous honorees include playwright Michael R. Jackson, critic-novelist Stanley Crouch and novelist Percival Everett.

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