The Warwick Prize for Writing is an innovative new literature prize that involves global competition, and crosses all disciplines.
The Prize will be given biennially for an excellent and substantial piece of writing in the English language, in any genre or form, on a theme which will change with every award. The winner of the inaugural Prize will be announced in February 2009.
The winner of this award received £50,000 and the opportunity to take up a short placement at The University of Warwick. Not sure if Naomi icked off on the latter. Nominations were invited from all current University of Warwick staff, Honorary Graduates and Honorary Professors. Current Warwick staff and Honorary Professors are ineligible to be nominated for the Prize. Self nominations are ineligible. The theme for the 2009 award was Complexity.
Naomi Klein’s The Shock Doctrine wins first £50,000 Warwick Prize for Writing
24th February- Canadian author and activist Naomi Klein, best known for her near-ubiquitous exposé of commercial globalisation No Logo, was last night announced as the winner of the first Warwick Prize for Writing in recognition of her latest book The Shock Doctrine.
On receiving the prize, worth £50,000 Naomi Klein said "At a time when the news out of the publishing industry is usually so bleak it’s thrilling to be part of a bold new prize supporting writing, especially alongside such an exciting array of other books.”
Publisher: Penguin Books Ltd
Around the world in Britain, the United States, Asia and the Middle East, there are people with power who are cashing in on chaos; exploiting bloodshed and catastrophe to brutally remake our world in their image. They are the shock doctors. Thrilling and revelatory, "The Shock Doctrine" cracks open the secret history of our era. Exposing these global profiteers, Naomi Klein discovered information and connections that shocked even her about how comprehensively the shock doctors' beliefs now dominate our world - and how this domination has been achieved. Raking in billions out of the tsunami, plundering Russia, exploiting Iraq - this is the chilling tale of how a few are making a killing while more are getting killed.
'Impassioned, hugely informative, wonderfully controversial, and scary as hell' John le Carre 'Packed with thinking dynamite ... a book to be read everywhere' John Berger 'If you read only one non-fiction book this year, make it this one' - , Books of the Year, Metro 'There are few books that really help us understand the present. The Shock Doctrine is one of those books' - John Gray, Guardian 'Lucid, calm, impeccably researched, gorgeously readable' - , Books of the Year, Observer 'A brilliant, brave and terrifying book' Arundhati Roy 'Powerful ... epic ... dramatic' Daily Telegraph 'A brilliant book written with a perfectly distilled anger, channelled through hard fact. She has indeed surpassed No Logo' Independent 'Excoriating ... passionate and informed ... Her prose packs a punch' Scotsman
Naomi Klein belongs to a group of remarkably well-informed and impassioned modern polemicists who are unafraid not only to argue about the destructive forces around us but to support their assertions with research and to stir up their readership into action. In the 'The Shock Doctrine', she demonstrates how the 'shock doctors' are exploiting situations to their own ends - a clear link is drawn between the way crises have been exploited in Iraq, and after hurricane Katrina and the Asian tsunami. In 'No Logo' - Klein documents in well-researched detail how big business keeps its costs low and its profits high through a systematic and institutionalised disregard for the welfare and rights of workers and the interests of society as a whole.
Mad, Bad and Sad: A History of Women and the Mind Doctors from 1800
Publisher: Little, Brown Book Group
Excessive shyness, sadness, erratic acts and eccentricity have all become fodder for the mind doctors over the last two hundred years during which their professions have grown and grown. Their diagnoses now encroach on almost all aspects of our emotional lives and behaviour. In turn, we see our lives as suitable cases for treatment and expect the mind doctors to fix us up with pills that promise to make us “better than well.”
Lisa Appignanesi’s brilliantly researched study of the relationship between women, mental illness and the mind doctors - one of the few to look at the full range of the ‘psy’ professions - reveals why this subject is so complex and fascinating. She chose to focus on women not only because their documented cases are riveting - from the depression suffered by Virginia Woolf and Sylvia Plath to the mental anguish and addictions of iconic beauties, Zelda Fitzgerald and Marilyn Monroe, to name but a few. The treatment of women has also, down the years, contributed hugely to the growth of understanding in the profession.
** 'Informative in startling ways, and never dull in the academic way, Appignanesi's genuinely new History of the Mind Doctors is a subtle and accessible account of that perhaps most daunting of modern relationships, the one between the Mind Doctor and his female patient. Because Appignanesi has a complex story to tell there is no blaming at work in this wonderful book, but a shrewd and sympathetic apprehension of what is at stake in the difficult histories of both the Mind Doctors and those they seek to help. It is a remarkable achievement' Adam Phillips ** 'Marvellous. At last! A serious, well-researched book on this important subject' Pamela Stephenson
The Art of Political Murder: Who Killed Bishop Gerardi?
On a Sunday night in 1998, Bishop Juan Gerardi, Guatemala's leading human rights activist, was bludgeoned to death in his garage. Just two days earlier, a Church-sponsored report had implicated Guatemala's government in the murders and disappearances of some 200,000 civilians. The Church, realizing that it could not rely on the legal system to look into the bishop's murder, took the controversial decision to form an investigative team of young men who called themselves Los Intocables (the Untouchables) to find the killers.For seven years, Francisco Goldman followed Los Intocables' efforts to uncover the truth. He observed firsthand some of the most crucial developments in the case, including the killing and forced exile of witnesses, judges and lawyers. The Art of Political Murder is his mesmerising account of the investigation. In telling it, Goldman opens a window on the new Latin American reality of mara youth gangs and organized crime, and demonstrates, at the most intimate level, the difficulties of building democracy in a country awash with political corruption and criminality. Most of all, it is the story of an extraordinary group of courageous people and their fight for justice.
'Goldman has focused his superb novelist's talents - compassion, precision, muscularity, great thoroughness, and an instinct for the exotic - on modern-day Guatemala's ineradicable crime against itself. A remarkable book.' Richard Ford This magnificent work of reportage by 'one of America's most significant novelists' (Claire Messud) should appeal to anyone who loved John Berendt's Midnight in the Garden of Good and Evil. * 'A work of unique moral acuity and masterful storytelling; but Goldman has done much more than weave us a fine tale. This is a real-life whodunit, a murder conspiracy which lays bare the poisonous heart of politics and power in contemporary Guatemala.' Jon Lee Anderson, author of Che Guevara: A Revolutionary Life * 'Goldman is a wonderful writer and this is an extremely important book.' Salman Rushdie"
Reinventing the Sacred
Stuart A Kauffman
Publisher: The Perseus Books Group
Consider the woven integrated complexity of a living cell after 3. 8 billion years of evolution. Is it more awe-inspiring to suppose that a transcendent God fashioned the cell, or to consider that the living organism was created by the evolving biosphere? As the eminent complexity theorist Stuart Kauffman explains in this ambitious and groundbreaking new book, people who do not believe in God have largely lost their sense of the sacred and the deep human legitimacy of our inherited spirituality. For those who believe in a Creator God, no science will ever disprove that belief. In Reinventing the Sacred, Kauffman argues that the science of complexity provides a way to move beyond reductionist science to something new: a unified culture where we see God in the creativity of the universe, biosphere, and humanity. Kauffman explains that the ceaseless natural creativity of the world can be a profound source of meaning, wonder, and further grounding of our place in the universe. His theory carries with it a new ethic for an emerging civilization and a reinterpretation of the divine. He asserts that we are impelled by the imperative of life itself to live with faith and courage-and the fact that we do so is indeed sublime. Reinventing the Sacred will change the way we all think about the evolution of humanity, the universe, faith, and reason.
Enrique Vila-Matas (translator: Jonathan Dunne)
Publisher: New Directions Publishing Corporation
The narrator of Montano's Malady is a writer who is so obsessed with literature that he finds it impossible to distinguish between real life and fictional reality. Part picaresque novel, part intimate diary, part memoir and philosophical musings, Enrique Vila-Matas's novel is a labyrinth in which writers as various as Cervantes, Sterne, Kafka, Robert Musil, Roberto Bolano, J. M. Coetzee, and W. G. Sebald crisscross on endlessly surprising paths. Trying to piece together his life of loss and pain, Vila-Matas gives us a look into the mind of someone struck by "literature-sickness," who, trying to piece together his life of loss and pain, leads the reader on an unsettling journey both through European cities and the pages of world literature.
Publisher: HarperCollins Publishers
A sweeping musical history that goes from the salons of pre-war Vienna to Velvet Underground shows in the sixties. In The Rest is Noise, Alex Ross, music critic of the New Yorker, gives us a riveting tour of the wild landscape of twentieth-century classical music: portraits of individuals, cultures, and nations reveal the predicament of the composer in a noisy, chaotic century. Taking as his starting point a production of Richard Strauss's Salome, conducted by the composer on 16 May 1906 with Puccini, Schoenberg, Berg and Adolf Hitler seated in the stalls, Ross suggests how this evening can be considered the century's musical watershed rather the riotous premiere of Stravinsky's Rite of Spring seven years later. Ross goes on to explore the mythology of modernism, Sibelius and the music of small countries, Kurt Weill, the music of the Third Reich, Britten, Boulez and the post-war avant-garde, and interactions between minimalist composers and rock bands in the sixties and seventies.