Windham-Campbell Prizes 2020 Announce their Eight Winners

We’re so thrilled to be working with the incredible Windham-Campbell Prizes 2020 who tonight have announced their eight inspiring international writers covering four categories; drama, poetry, fiction and non-fiction, each of whom will receive $165,000 USD providing them with the opportunity to write free of financial worries.

2020’s powerful, female-dominated line-up of Windham-Campbell Prize recipients unites a rich, international collection of writers whose challenging work explores pressing political and social themes across identity, culture and power. Now in their eighth year, the Prizes celebrate writers at every stage of their careers.

In poetry we recognise British-Indian poet Bhanu Kapil, known for exploring crucial questions of trauma, healing and immigration, and the incredible Jonah Mixon-Webster and his unflinching poetry tackling the public health crisis in his hometown of Flint, Michigan.

For drama we celebrate Julia Cho, the incredible talent behind The Aubergine, Aleshea Harris, whose unflinching works confront the wounds of misogyny and racism.

Their prizes for fiction have gone to the prolific Chinese-born author of The Vagrants, Yiyun Li and Zambian author Namwali Serpell who explores themes of identity and belonging.

And in nonfiction they award Australian writer Maria Tumarkin, whose works explore the lives of ordinary people with extraordinarily painful pasts, and Anne Boyer, author of the searingly honest exploration of cancer The Undying.

 Mike Kelleher, Director of the Windham-Campbell Prizes said about this year’s recipients, “This is such an exciting group of prize recipients—so many utterly original voices from so many different places. Their work digs deeply into everything from the poisoned water crisis in present-day Flint, Michigan to the vicissitudes of the surveillance state in an Afro-Futurist Zambia. To read the work of these eight writers—seven of them women—is simply overwhelming.”

The Windham-Campbell Prizes are one of the richest literary prizes in the world, with $1.32 million USD given to eight authors every year writing in English from anywhere in the world. Nominees for the Prizes are considered by judges who remain anonymous before and after the prize announcement.

The Prizes were the brainchild of lifelong partners Donald Windham and Sandy M. Campbell. The couple were deeply involved in literary circles, collected books avidly and read voraciously. They also penned various works, such as novels, plays and short stories, amongst others. For years they had discussed the idea of creating an award to highlight literary achievement and provide writers with the opportunity to focus on their work independent of financial concerns. When Campbell passed away unexpectedly in 1988, Windham took on the responsibility for making this shared dream a reality. The first prizes were announced in 2013.

In September 2020, Yale University and the Beinecke Library will host a week-long festival of events to honour the winners.

Watch the winners’ announcement again at https://windhamcampbell.org/ I #WindhamCampbellPrizes

For further information please contact: Georgina Moore at Midas Public Relations [email protected]

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