Here’s the shortlist for the 2023 Cundill History Prize.

Literary Hub

September 27, 2023, 7:00pm

Today, the shortlist for the 2023 Cundill History Prize which “celebrates books that create ‘dialogues between dilemmas of yesterday and today’”, was announced at an event at Scandinavia House, organized by McGill University. The winner will take home $75,000, the largest monetary award given for a book of non-fiction published in English.

“This shortlist includes heart breaking tales from China’s Cultural Revolution, biography, environmental concerns, religion, data management, and much more, said historian Philippa Levine, this year’s jury chair. “It ranges in time from the ancient Mediterranean to the really recent past, and examines animals as well as humans. Every one of these authors advances original conceptions and tells a gripping story. We could not be more thrilled with the eight titles that have made it to this year’s shortlist.”

The finalists will be named in mid-October, and the winner announced on November 8th, as part of the Cundill History Prize Festival. In the meantime, here’s the shortlist:

Alison Bashford, The Huxleys: An Intimate History of Evolution
(The University of Chicago Press)

Tania Branigan, Red Memory: Living, Remembering and Forgetting China’s Cultural Revolution
(Faber & Faber)

Matthew Connelly, The Declassification Engine: What History Reveals About America’s Top Secrets
(Pantheon Books)

Mackenzie Cooley, The Perfection of Nature: Animals, Breeding, and Race in the Renaissance
(The University of Chicago Press)

Kate Cooper, Queens of a Fallen World: The Lost Women of Augustine’s Confessions
(Basic Books)

Douglas Ober, Dust on the Throne: The Search for Buddhism in India
(Stanford University Press)

James Morton Turner, Charged: A History of Batteries and Lessons for a Clean Energy Future
(University of Washington Press)

Patrick Weil, The Madman in the White House: Sigmund Freud, Ambassador Bullit, and the Lost Psychobiography of Woodrow Wilson
(Harvard University Press)

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