The Langston Hughes Medal has been awarded annually since 1978 to recognize an influential and distinguished writer associated with the African diaspora for their "impressive works of poetry, fiction, drama, autobiography and critical essays that help to celebrate the memory and tradition of Langston Hughes".

Established by the late Raymond R. Patterson, Professor Emeritus of English at the City College of New York (CCNY), and founder of the festival, the medal honors Langston Hughes' lifelong commitment to social change through works that reflect various cultures with roots in an African heritage. The award is given to a "literary work that has endeavored to engage, challenge and question their cultural milieu in the tradition of Langston Hughes."


Recipients of the Langston Hughes medallion are: