US National Book Award 2017: Jesmyn Ward wins novel award for the second time

NEW YORK, NOVEMBER 16/AGRIPRESS/ — The National Book Award for Fiction, one of the most prestigious awards in American literature, has been won for the second time in her career by writer Jesmyn Ward, who was nominated Wednesday night for Rich, Unburied. It is a book critically acclaimed for its lyrical style in which the American novelist addresses a variety of topics, including issues of race, poverty, loss, and family life in the southern United States.

Several writers, publishers, and representatives of major US publishing houses attended in New York Wednesday night for the 68th National Book Awards.

Actress Cynthia Nixon, presenter of the ceremony, gave a speech in which she spoke about the power of literature in the current political context, which is particularly difficult for many groups of people, especially for women, people of color and marginalized groups. .

Writer Jesmyn Ward won the fiction category. The other nominees are Elliot Ackerman (“Dark at the Crossing”), Lisa Ko (“The Leavers”), Min Jin Lee (“Pachinko”), and Carmen Maria Machado (“Her Body and Other Party: Stories”). .

Jesmyn Ward, 40, won the same award in 2011 for her novel “Saving the Bones.”

The American writer’s third novel, Rich, Unburied, Rich, half travel, half fiction, tells the story of a family living in the fictional Mississippi after Hurricane Katrina.

Russian-American journalist Masha Jessen won the non-fiction book category with the volume “The Future is History: How Totalitarianism Reclaimed Russia”.

In the poetry category, three-time Pulitzer Prize winner Frank Bidart won the National Book Award for “Half a Light: Collected Poems 1965-2016”.

In the Youth Literature category, Robin Benway won the “Far from the Tree” volume.

Two figures from the American literature industry were honored with awards throughout their careers Wednesday night. President Bill Clinton presented the Literary Award for Outstanding Contribution to the American Literary Community to writer Richard Robinson, President and CEO of Scholastic Publishing Group.

Celebrity writer and writer Annie Proulx, author of the short story “Brokeback Mountain,” was awarded the Distinguished Contribution to American Letters, an honor given to her by actress Anne Hathaway.

Also at the ceremony on Wednesday evening, the organizers announced that the National Book Foundation will receive a grant from the Art for Justice Fund. This fund was established in early 2017 with the goal of promoting reform of the American justice system and ending mass incarceration in the United States. The National Writers Foundation will use this funding to launch a special program called “Literature for Justice,” which will focus on the issue of mass detention.

Nearly 1,500 books were entered this year in the race to win the National Book Awards, attributed to volumes with publication dates between December 1, 2016 and November 30, 2017. Of the 20 finalists in 2017, 15 were women. All finalists received a check for $1,000 each, and the winners in each category were rewarded with a check for $10,000.

The National Book Foundation has run the National Book Awards, established in 1950, since 1988. Recipients of previous editions of these literary awards have included many highly regarded writers, including William Faulkner, Philip Roth, John Updike, and Joyce Carol Oates. , Don DeLillo, Cormac McCarthy, Annie Proulx, Alice McDermott, Ralph Ellison, Jonathan Franzen and Saul Bellow.

In 2016, the National Book Award for Fiction was awarded to Colson Whitehead for his novel The Underground Railroad, a volume describing the mechanisms and foundations of racism in the United States. AGERPRES / (AS – Author: Florin Bădescu, Editor: Mariana Ionescu)

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