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National Book Critics Circle Award

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

National Book Critics Circle Awards
Nbcc-logo.png
Awarded for"the finest books and reviews published in English"
DateMarch, annual
CountryUnited States
Presented byNational Book Critics Circle
First awarded1975 publications (1976)
Websitebookcritics.org

The National Book Critics Circle Awards are a set of annual American literary awards by the National Book Critics Circle to promote "the finest books and reviews published in English".[1] The first NBCC awards were announced and presented January 16, 1976.[2]

There are six awards to books published in the U.S. during the preceding calendar year, in six categories: Fiction, Nonfiction, Poetry, Memoir/Autobiography, Biography, and Criticism. Four of them span the entire NBCC award history; Memoir/Autobiography and Biography were recognized by one "Autobiography/Biography" award for publication years 1983 to 2004, then replaced by two awards. Beginning in 2014, the NBCC also presents a special "first book" award across all 6 categories, named the John Leonard Award in honor of literary critic and NBCC founding member John Leonard, who died in 2008.[3]

Books previously published in English are not eligible, such as re-issues and paperback editions. Nor does the NBC Circle consider "cookbooks, self help books (including inspirational literature), reference books, picture books or children's books". They do consider "translations, short story and essay collections, self published books, and any titles that fall under the general categories".[4]

The judges are the volunteer directors of the NBCC who are 24 members serving rotating three-year terms, with eight elected annually by the voting members,[5] namely "professional book review editors and book reviewers".[6]

Winners of the awards are announced each year at the NBCC awards ceremony in conjunction with the yearly membership meeting, which takes place in March.[7]

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  • ✪ America's First Great Struggle for Racial Equality: 2018 National Book Festival
  • ✪ Tim O'Brien - 2009 National Book Festival
  • ✪ E.L. Doctorow: 2014 National Book Festival
  • ✪ Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie Receives USC Everett M. Rogers Award
  • ✪ Announcing the 2016 National Book Award Finalists | The New Yorker

Transcription

>> Meredith Hindley: Good afternoon and welcome to the 18th annual Library of Congress national book festival. I'm Meredith Hindley. I'm with the National Endowment for the Humanities, or you might better know us as NEH. NEH is proud to sponsor this year's Understanding our World Stage. For those of you who don't know, NEH is a small, independent federal agency. We fund programs in preservation, research, education and public programming -- documentaries, films. The humanities, of course, are the reason that we're here today because it's literature history. It's the reason that we all love books. As a historian, I am particularly excited about this afternoon's panel, which features Clarence Page, Isabel Wilkerson, and Brooks D. Simpson and conversation about America's first great struggle for racial equality. Isabel Wilkerson is the author of the Warmth of Other Suns, an epic account of the great migration that saw millions of African Americans leave the south in search of a better life elsewhere. The book appeared on more than 30 Best of the Year lists and won the National Book Critic Circles Award. Wilkerson also won the Pulitzer Prize for her work as the Chicago bureau chief of the New York Times, making her the first black woman in the history of American journalism to win the Pulitzer Prize and the first African American to win for individual reporting. She is also a recipient of a 2000 -- yeah, right? [ Applause ] She's also the recipient of a 2015 national humanities medal which is given out by NEH in conjunction with the White House. Brooks D. Simpson is a professor of Civil War studies at Arizona State University. He has written and edited 16 books about the Civil War and reconstruction including Ulysses S. Grant, Triumph Over Adversity, which was named a New York Times notable book. He has recently edited Reconstruction Voices from America's First Great Struggle for Racial Equality, for the Library of America. The book is a compilation of more than 100 contemporaneous letters, diary entries, interviews, petitions, testimony and newspaper and magazine articles by the famous and not-so-famous. NEH helped launch the Library of America more than three decades ago and this new volume continues its tradition of documenting, publishing, and celebrating American voices. Our moderator for today is Clarence Page, longtime columnist for the Chicago Tribune and one of the country's most insightful observers of race and identity. In 19 -- [ Laughter ] Is that okay? You good with that? >> Brooks D. Simpson: You'll take it. >> Clarence Page: [Inaudible] yeah. Thank you. >> Meredith Hindley: I can choose some other adjective. We're good? Okay. All right. All right. >> Clarence Page: Very fine. >> Meredith Hindley: In 1989, Page won the Pulitzer Prize for commentary. His syndicated column currently appears in 150 newspapers across the country. He's also a contributor and commentator for PBS News Hour, Hardball with Chris Matthews, and NPR's weekend edition. And so with that, I'm going to turn it over to Mr. Page. >> Clarence Page: Thank you very much. Thank you. Big round of applause for our panel. [ Applause ] >> Clarence Page: Thank you very much. I've really been looking forward to this. This -- I view this hour as an examination of an underappreciated period. We all have -- if your upbringing was like mine, you learned a lot about the Civil War. You learned about the Civil Rights Movement. I watched it on television for that matter. And that period in between, about a century almost, kind of gets short shrift. We can talk about that and the fact that we've got two wonderful experts here today on examining these two periods. Of course, Isabel Wilkerson, as you have just heard, her wonderful book, Warmth of Other Suns, and Brooks Simpson, who's done his -- well, his latest Civil War book and book examining created after the Civil War, the words of reconstruction. This is -- in both cases, we're talking about a period that kind of explains so much of our current political landscape, our sociological landscape, our cultural landscape. And I can't wait to get into it because in some ways, certainly the story of the Great Migration and the story of the slavery period were stories that had deep impact on my family and millions of other families across the country. And helps -- examining those [inaudible] helps to give us important insights into where we are going. So I am -- would like to first talk to Isabel about that migration period and then to Brooks about the period that led up to it and the factors that led up to it, and then get to our -- get to your questions as well. So I have my faithful timekeeper here to do what I never do, keep track of time. So it's a -- Isabel, I want to say congratulations. I'm delighted to be on stage with you here today. Your book in many ways has been something of a phenomenon among people I know, a lot like Roots was back in the '70s. Stories that help us to -- well, spur us to say, well, what about my family story? What about the community that I live in? This crosses racial lines. You all remember how popular Roots was, and Isabel, you've kind of become a similar sort of a sought after figure for the wonderful stories that you reveal. And your book, of course, focuses on the -- that period that affected so many millions of us, and so many of our families, and you chose to focus on three families in particular to exemplify the period that -- like we say, a little [inaudible] bet you've been asked this a million times. But I'd like you to say, first of all, why you picked those three families. What is so special about them that can help the rest of us get insight into the period? >> Isabel Wilkerson: Well, thank you for that. I'm honored to be here on so many levels, to be here on the panel with you. Also, to be here for the second time at the National Book Festival for the same book. I mean, this is -- I was here in 2011 and now I'm back here in 2018. [ Applause ] >> Clarence Page: That's got to be a well-worn copy you've got there. >> Isabel Wilkerson: It is. This is my version of the book and I often say that if this book were human being, it would be in high school and dating because it took me 15 years to write the book and now it's taken over my life in so many other ways. So I'm so thrilled and honored to be back here in Washington where I am actually from. This was the -- [ Applause ] This was the receiving station of the Great Migration for some of the people who came up from North Carolina, Georgia, and Virginia. So I am a product of the migration to this city. So it's very special and very close to my heart to be here. I chose to work on this book, on this topic because I agree that this is an underappreciated, unrecognized epic in our country's history. It is not something that happened in one year or two years. It actually unfolded from the time of World War I until the 1970s. It involved six million African Americans who defected the Jim Crow south to get to what they hoped would be freedom in the north, the Midwest, and west. This means that the majority of African Americans that you might meet in the cities from -- you know, from Washington up to New York and over to Chicago, Detroit, the Midwest and all the way over to the West Coast, are -- many of these people are actually products of the Great Migration. I view this as a beautifully American story because most -- many, many Americans are the product of migration from across the Atlantic Ocean, from across the Pacific Ocean, from across the Rio Grande. It's part of what -- it's often viewed as being an American often means for many people, other than the Natives who were already here, was -- would be to be the descendent of people who did part of what these people did, who left everything in order to set out for what they hoped would be a better life. The difference here is that this Great Migration was the only time in our country's history that American citizens had to leave the land of their birth and to set out for places within the borders of their own country in order to be recognized as citizens. In other words, this is the only time in our country's history, these people are the only ones who had to act like immigrants in order to be recognized as citizens. And that's what makes the Great Migration singular in all of the ways that we view migration and immigration in the current time, people coming from outside of the country. I also view -- when you think of the Great Migration, you often can think of it as this was the tremendous advance guard that led to the Civil Rights Movement. This was the time from the start of the 20th century throughout much of the 20th century was essentially the effort of African Americans to pursue freedom by voting with their bodies to get to what they hoped would be a freer place outside of the place to which they were born. And then also the goal of this was to connect all of us to what was the unfoldment of what happened in the cities as a result of their arrival. This meant redlining and restrictive covenants. These are the measures that were enacted as a result of the Great Migration of people coming to these cities. So they were fleeing one form of repression only to find a different kind of hostility once they arrived in these places. I chose to tell the story, to answer your question, through the lives of three people because I wanted people who were reading this book many, many years after the migration concluded, to feel that they were in the -- on the train seats with the people. That they were actually at the kitchen table with the people as they were trying to figure out should we go or should we stay. What should we do? This was a question that many, many African Americans, in fact, the majority of African Americans would have had to consider at some point during that time. And that's because before the Great Migration began, 90% of all African Americans were in the south. By the time that the Great Migration ended, nearly half had redistributed themselves all over the rest of the country. And so what this meant was that this was an unfurling of people, this was a spreading out of people throughout the rest of the country. And so that's why this affected so many people. But to have us to be able to see and feel what they went through meant to focus in on three people. So the three people, Ida Mae, Brandon Gladney, George Swanson Starling and Robert Joseph Pershing Foster were the three people who each represented the three streams of this Great Migration, people who went up the East Coast from Georgia, Florida, the Carolinas, and Virginia, here to Washington, D.C. to Baltimore and up to the East Coast toward New York. Then there was the Midwest stream, which carried people from Mississippi, Alabama, Tennessee and Arkansas to Chicago, to Detroit, to Cleveland, and the entire Midwest. And then there was a West Coast stream which carried people from Louisiana and Texas out to California and when they really wanted to get away, they went to Seattle. And when they really, really wanted to get away, they went to Alaska. That's how far they went. And so each of them represents those three streams. Each of them represents a different socioeconomic experience from which they were all leaving from. They each were in -- were leaving for different precipitating reasons and they also were beautifully imperfect and they were clear to me about their -- willing to talk about their imperfections in their decision making. And that's how I settled on the three to make this come alive for people. >> Clarence Page: Well, you're a terrific storyteller and you also -- I just heard a little applause over there. And also certainly -- well, yourself and your family were, in many ways, products of the migration. Am I right? >> Isabel Wilkerson: Yes. Yes. My mother was from Rome, Georgia. [ Laughter ] And my father was from Petersburg, Virginia and they migrated during different years -- actually, different decades searching for something better and they met here, married, and here I am. This is a universal story for most Americans anyway, but particularly for African Americans. It's beautifully predictable when you go to a particular city, such as Detroit, and you see that Aretha Franklin, for example, her family was a product of the Great Migration, as were pretty much everybody who were part -- who was part of Motown. And her father was from -- was a sharecropper in Mississippi. He migrated to Memphis, the on to Detroit. And so this is just the universal experience of what we view as urban African Americans in the north, Midwest, and west, was the story of the Great Migration. That's how people got there. >> Clarence Page: Now, how much did the pattern of the railroad lines and the black press have to do with the migration? >> Isabel Wilkerson: The railroads were the -- were the route that -- the means, the mechanism by which they escaped. And so because of the railroads, wherever the railroads were going, you know, the city of New Orleans, the Illinois Central Railroad that's of legend was what people in Mississippi were able to take to get to the north. And that route, the tracks that were set by the Illinois Central Railroad, determined that people in Mississippi were going to end up in Chicago. And that's how that happened. >> Clarence Page: That's how Chicago got so many Mississippi. >> Isabel Wilkerson: And a lot of people say it's Mississippi North. >> Clarence Page: Right. >> Isabel Wilkerson: And so then there also became Harriett Tubmans in so many people's family. I mean, I'm sure that there are people who are descendants of many, many migration streams who will speak about someone in their family who was the first to leave and then they brought others behind and that's how families got out. >> Clarence Page: Well, mine come up on the Baltimore in Ohio. The BNO line, which -- from Alabama and just dropped folks off along [inaudible] so I got [inaudible] from Tennessee and right through Ohio where I grew up and went all the way to Detroit and where I used to listen to Aretha Franklin like everybody else. >> Isabel Wilkerson: Yeah. >> Clarence Page: But that -- the [inaudible] line, you spend enough time in Chicago to be familiar with Chicago Defender and some of the other black press around the country. What role did they have in supporting the migration? >> Isabel Wilkerson: I view the newspapers in the north, which we should always remember were considered contraband in the south. They were not always -- you know, they're not -- they were not something that you could just go around -- you just couldn't go into a store and buy one. That's where the Pullman Porters became essential in helping to make them possible. They would drop them off at a particularly designated spot along the rail line. And that's where people knew -- African Americans who were in the south would know that's where to pick them up and then they would be, you know, handed -- spread to people in the south, read at the kitchen tables. Could not be seen out with them. But this is what set in motion or gave people an idea of how they might be able to make it in the north. I would consider the black press at that time to be similar to Twitter or Facebook or way -- and also Craigslist in terms of ways of letting people know, this is the information. This is what you can do. And many -- there were many, many letters that were written to the Chicago Defender, you know, saying I am -- this is where I am now in Alabama. I'm in Mississippi. Things are very hard for us. They're heartbreaking stories that are told through those letters. And they're seeking information. How can I make a go of it? And those articles about what was happening in the north were inspirational for them and gave them a sense of what was possible. So they were newspapers but they also were mechanisms that would give people an idea of how they could make it happen. >> Clarence Page: And there was a -- well, what happened when they got to the north? It wasn't all land of milk and honey. >> Isabel Wilkerson: It was similar to what happens in any migration. I mean, we see that today throughout the world where people are often -- people who are already in a particular place may be resistant to those coming from the outside. We see that they may be cordoned off in places that are reserved for those who are recent arrivals. These people who were leaving were not just -- they were not migrants, per say. They were actually refugees. They were political refugees seeking political asylum within the borders of their own country. And what occurred is we see refugee camps in other parts of the world, and that is essentially what happened in most of the cities in the north, Midwest and west is that they -- they were cordoned off into segregated areas, which were then enforced by redlining and restrictive covenants which meant that these -- the people were essentially met with resistance and often hostility. When they sought to leave those spaces that had been reserved for them, then they often met with tremendous hostility and resistance and often violence. One of the people who experienced this was Lorraine Hansberry who was a product of the Great Migration, father from Tennessee -- father from Mississippi, mother from Tennessee. And they arrived -- they were on the south side as you know so well, and when they sought to buy a house outside of the designated precincts that had been reserved for African Americans from the south, they were met with a tremendous resistance and hostility that they actually couldn't -- were not permitted to move into the house that they had purchased. And they -- a brick that was thrown at the family narrowly missed Lorraine Hansberry's head. She was seven or eight years old at the time. And her father had to go all the way to the Supreme Court to win the right to live in the house that they had purchased. So that was one example of the resistance that they met. >> Clarence Page: You mentioned how -- what newspapers were treated as contraband that encouraged black folks to move to the north. And, Brooks, you can respond to this too. One irony that I know that was that of all -- that people were trying to escape in the south. But after enough of them escaped, there became a shortage of black folks. And so it became virtually criminal to try to leave the south. And I said, Julie, they can't live with us, they can't live without us, you know? But it seemed kind of like that. And there was also, as I mentioned, the reception in the north, the 1919 Race Riots there in Chicago and others around the country, St. Louis others. And they were in the time of World War I, really that's just after World War I we're talking about there. So this is a -- so how would you rate the amount of -- well, the bad news of the migration as far as some families were concerned? >> Isabel Wilkerson: Meaning? >> Clarence Page: Well, like, for example, the hostility in the north as well as the -- what oppression in the south for those who wanted to leave. >> Isabel Wilkerson: Well, yeah. There are lots of people who will look at the Great Migration and see the response to the Great Migration as a kind of commentary on whether it was worth it or not. And I think that that should be left to the people themselves to determine. Those who took -- had the courage to leave a place that was so repressive that actually there were efforts to keep them from going. There are people who would actually be arrested at -- on the -- at the railroad platforms. These were [inaudible] free American citizens. There were people who were arrested in their train seats and when there were too many people to arrest at that -- at the time that they might have been trying to leave, they would actually wave the train on through so that the train would not stop and then they would have to figure out how, now, will we get to freedom. So there were tremendous obstacles that they had to face. There -- while the Chicago Defender and the Amsterdam -- the newspapers in New York and also in Pittsburgh were an inspiration, it was up to the people to actually make that decision. They were the ones that were going to have to leave the planter that they were said to owe money to. They were the ones that were going to have to figure out how to get a ticket when the prevailing repressive Jim Crow regime would not allow them to buy a ticket, make it difficult for them to buy a ticket, make it difficult for them to find out what the schedule was. I mean, there's so many incredibly sad, unbelievable stories of people trying to get from one state to another within our -- the borders of our country within the lifespan of people who may be alive today that this happened. And that for them to make that great journey, that great sacrifice to show that kind of courage and perseverance. Remember, there was no Twitter. I'm saying that it was like Twitter, but there were no -- there was nobody that they could ask for, there was no relocation.com to check and see exactly, you know, where would they be able to get a home beforehand. So this was a tremendous leap of faith on their part. And the people that I had the pleasure and honor of speaking to, while life had been difficult for them, they -- and experience many challenges in the north, they also felt that they had made the right decision because they themselves made the decision. I think that we often forget that a lot of this had to do with agency, which is what we're going to be getting to in terms of reconstruction and the aftermath of reconstruction. Is that this was the first time in 246 years of enslavement, 12 generations of enslavement, followed by 100 years or so of a Jim Crow cast system meant that for the -- during the Great Migration, this was really the first time in the country's history that the lowest cast people had the chance to choose what they would do with their God-given talents and with their choices of what they were going to do, where they would live. It was the first -- it was the first chance that they had to actually act upon their agency. And I think that that in itself means that whatever was to come of this, as the defender once said, whatever was to come of this great leap of faith, it was the leaving that was so important. It was the leaving that made this the epic that it was. It was taking the risk and leaving the place that had been designated to them, both in geographically and in terms of the hierarchy of the south. People who could not vote were now making the decision to leave with their bodies and that was a tremendous thing that they did. >> Clarence Page: I want to give Brooks the chance to respond here in a little different way in that your book is a -- your latest book is a wonderful collection of documents, letters, essays, editorials, news reports, speeches from different people to really kind of capture what the foundation of the great debate that followed the Civil War. And I -- well, you lead with one of my favorite people, Frederick Douglass, who according to the president is getting more recognized every day. Delighted to see that. And the essay is ironic. I want to know why you chose this one and also what it's about is -- and it's not the first time I read it. But it is an essay to white folks who are questioning what to do, what we used to call the negro question when I was a kid. Yeah. What is to be done with the Negro? And Frederick Douglass says, "The best thing you can do is leave us alone." >> Brooks D. Simpson: Leave us alone and give us a fair chance. That's all we ask for. We don't ask for special privileges, we don't ask for great advantages. We just want to be left alone. And what -- you know, when African Americans migrated north, they actually knew that the north was not a land of milk and honey. That, in fact, the attitudes of many white northerners had been very hostile to African American aspirations and the right to vote, for example. And that in fact it was the decline, a war weariness, if you will, among many white northerners in the 1870s, that contributed to the collapse of reconstruction. All Douglass wanted was, say, let us see what we can do on our own. You don't need to help us, but don't get in our way. And, unfortunately, for African Americans, there were lots of people who wanted to get in the way of defining the question of what did freedom mean after the American civil war? >> Clarence Page: And we've got some -- a marble of understatement to say -- there was some obstructions. How much did terrorism play a role in reconstruction? And I'm talking about in the lives and the great debate. >> Brooks D. Simpson: I think terrorism, white supremacist terrorism in the American south is fundamental to the collapse of reconstruction and that it was overthrown. It didn't so much fail as it was resisted from the beginning. And when people talk about what happened in the United States on September 11th, 2001, and I began to hear terrorism comes from the outside. Anyone who looks at reconstruction sees that terrorism, in this sense, against African Americans, was as American as apple pie. Something that's starting long before Republicans had outlined a point of reconstruction. There's already terrorist activity against African Americans immediately after the Civil War. And continuing on, city of Memphis in 1866, African American veterans just discharged are attacked by city officials. In 1873, in Colfax, Louisiana, upwards about 100 African Americans slaughtered in cold blood. These are things that today's Americans sometimes don't want to look at because reconstruction had both a face of hope and opportunity and a face of -- a very ugly face of resistance to that hope and opportunity. >> Clarence Page: I've been amazed over the years whenever I've written about the period I call the lynching period really, reconstruction period leading up to the Great Migration and all. How many letters I've gotten -- well, these days, emails -- from white readers mostly who are not angry or upset. They are amazed and surprised that they didn't know about this or that they hear about lynching but they didn't realize how extensive it was. >> Brooks D. Simpson: No. I think that's one thing that we tend to have underplayed the degree to which racial violence, anti-black violence was prevalent in the United States in the mid-19th century, including reconstruction. That we also overlook the fact that the 17th president of the United States, usually ranked as one of the worst presidents, although these things may change over time -- [ Laughter ] [ Applause ] >> Clarence Page: It's kind of an ongoing contest in the -- >> Brooks D. Simpson: Yes. It is. But that -- that he was, in fact, hostile towards African American aspirations, including Frederick Douglass. Two men had an encounter in which Johnson treated Douglass rather badly. And we have to remember that between 1865 and 1869, a staunch opponent of black equality happened to be in the White House and it wouldn't be until 1869 that, in fact, there would be a president who at least had some glimmer of hope for African American aspirations. >> Clarence Page: And that was Grant. >> Brooks D. Simpson: That was Grant. >> Clarence Page: And how would you contrast for us folks who aren't that old, how would you contrast Johnson and Grant? As far -- not just their approaches, but also how were they perceived by African Americans in particular? I mean, you have an interesting piece that Douglass wrote about Grant. But, anyway, I'll let you answer. >> Brooks D. Simpson: But the two men -- it's interesting because the two men did share certain things. Ulysses S. Grant, in fact, is the last slaveholder elected president of the United States. That Grant actually owned a slave in the 1850s [inaudible] slaveholding family of William Jones. >> Clarence Page: Okay. >> Brooks D. Simpson: And but married into a slaveholding family when he lived in St. Louis with his in-laws. And so therefore he had -- he's the last slaveholder to be president of the United States. So you can always win a Jeopardy contest by pointing that out. But the fact of the matter is that Grant grew when it came to issues of race. He said, well, African Americans fight for their freedom during the American Civil War. Became an advocate of African Americans in uniform. Then he began to become an advocate of black voting. After he began to see that African Americans needed to be armed with a vote in order to protect themselves. So, in fact, in 1868, that's the first presidential election in which a large number of African Americans participate and their popular vote gave Grant a popular majority. Grant would have still won in the electoral college had only white people voted, but it's the 10s and hundreds of thousands of African Americans who vote for Grant that give him that popular majority. And Grant, as president, then fights for black rights, supervises the ratification of the 15th amendment, sees that as the capstone of the repudiation of the Dred Scott decision. But by the mid-1870s, begins to understand that many whites in the United States, north as well as south, no longer have the heart to fight for black freedom the way that African Americans did. And he talks about this. That in this -- there's a document in this book. On January 13th, 1875, Grant talks about how we in this boasted land of Christianity and civilization can allow this to happen while the miscreants of the Colfax Massacre, the people who committed that massacre, go unwhipped of justice. And if an American president ever put it squarely in front of the American people about the importance of race and the failure to live up to the nation's ideals, it would be that message to the United States Senate. >> Clarence Page: I was intrigued by the parallels I began to pick up with the politics of those days and the politics of today. And the issues we mentioned. Violence. Racial violence. Also, voter suppression, registration. Who is a citizen? Who isn't? Who's got rights and who doesn't? To -- time is short, so let me just put to you my number one question that I've been burning to ask you. Who won the Civil War? [ Laughter ] >> Brooks D. Simpson: Let's put it this way. Reconstruction defines for Americans, white and black, what the Civil War accomplished for that generation. That while people will talk about how the reconstruction amendments, 13th, 14th, 15th amendment, Civil Rights Act of 1866, Civil Rights Act of 1875, would set up the foundation of the second Civil Rights Movement, the 1940s, '50s and '60s. The fact is that between 1865 and 1877, I would argue what happens is that in order to welcome back white southerners, the former Confederates into the union, white northerners and white southerners alike agreed that that would come at the expense of black freedom, despite black assertions to the contrary. Blacks would not take this passively. They fought against this as much as possible. But by the 1870s, reunion trumps racial justice. And that's something that many, many Americans were complicit in that result among American whites, both north and south. >> Clarence Page: It's -- yes, Isabel? >> Isabel Wilkerson: I believe that the experience with Charlottesville and all that's happened in recent years have been an indication that clearly the north won the war. But the south won the peace. And -- >> Clarence Page: [Inaudible] that. North won the war, the south won the peace. >> Isabel Wilkerson: And I think that the people of the Great Migration essentially were African Americans in the south who decided to leave knew that. They could see that things were not going to change in their lifetime. Things were not going to change anytime soon. In fact, during that time in the years after reconstruction ended and there was a reclaiming of it, which you would be more expert than I. But in those -- the time where there was no longer a financial investment in black bodies, that's when lynchings began to rise to such a level at a certain period of time. The first three decades of the 20th century, there was a lynching every four days somewhere on the American south. And a lot of people, I think, don't realize what a lynching actually is. It's not just someone's been killed. It's -- it is a ritualistic public execution that's there to -- that's performative in order to send a message to everyone in that cast system as to who could do what in that world. And I think the people in the Great Migration, African Americans in the south at that time recognized that things were not going to change and this is where they -- that's where they made their great leap of faith into what they hope would be better. I believe that they knew that they were not looking to become, you know, builders of skyscrapers and captains of industry per say. They were looking to be able to live out their lives without the repressive violence and terror and to be able to be whoever they were in their mind and in their heart. >> Clarence Page: Right. Well, one question that comes up is, when we're talking about, well, Civil War in 1865, the Great Migration, as you -- by your account, begin around World War I. There's -- people have different ideas as to when it actually began. But I'm curious to ask you the question of, why did it take us, our families, the migrants, so long to begin the Great Migration if you will. And you also mentioned in the book, you make a passing mention too, for the first generation to be -- not to be born in slavery, which reminds me of South Africa where I've also worked very -- they refer to the Born Free Generation, the born frees being those born after [inaudible] so but I'd like to ask you, why do you think it took so long for the migration? >> Isabel Wilkerson: Yeah. So these were the children and grandchildren of people who had -- who were enslaved at the time of the Civil War, and so they were also -- there was a greater disconnect between them and the world of enslavement and all of the protocols and expectations of deference and all of that. It was a totally new generation. Also, of course, the biggest issue was World War I and the fact that the north had been relying on labor from Europe. And with World War I on, that meant that that labor was no longer available to the north and the north needed workers. And so the Great Migration began actually -- this is something that when you see how African Americans are often viewed, seen, and have been treated in the times that they've been in the north, it doesn't make sense when you hear this. But the first arrivals were actually invited here. It was a northern industry that went north and began to recruit African Americans as workers in -- to come and work in the factories and the steel mills and the railroads and all of that in the north. And so that meant that the first arrivals were actually invited here in spite of the resistance, hostility and actually the mechanisms that were used to restrict them upon arrival. But that meant that they were -- they came because they came to work. They came -- they had an opportunity. They could see that there was a way that they could take care of their families, and that's what began this great wave of people. >> Brooks D. Simpson: And at the same time, what you got at that moment is the rise in American historiography, the so-called Dunning School which condemned reconstructions of failure of the election of the first southerner since the Civil War to the presidency, Woodrow Wilson, and the 50th anniversary of the end of the American Civil War. Wilson speaking Gettysburg at 1913 and the like, that this became we then [inaudible] this point to call this the Brothers War, the [inaudible] between brothers. And African Americans were getting taken out of the picture of what happened during the American Civil War. Later on, people would be very surprised to hear that nearly 200,000 African Americans served in the armies of the United States during the war. And, in fact, when we talk about the union versus the confederacy, we were freaked out. The confederacy fights war against the United States of America. The man responsible for the death of more United States military personnel than any other is Robert E. Lee. And we ought to remember that's one of the reasons that Arlington is established. [ Applause ] >> Isabel Wilkerson: That's a -- >> Clarence Page: You're a brave man to say that so close to Virginia here. >> Brooks D. Simpson: I just walk across the bridge. I'm a UVA boy so I [inaudible] before from Charlottesville. >> Clarence Page: You're okay then. When I came here from the land of Lincoln, I had to cover Doug Wilder's campaign. In fact, I was greeted by a couple of Virginians who said, you know how many people it takes to change a flat tire? How many UVA students it takes to change the flat tire? And the answer was one to get the new tire, one to get the beer, and three to reminisce about how beautiful the old tire was. >> Brooks D. Simpson: Absolutely. >> Clarence Page: So since [inaudible] but I was -- oh, by the way, is that two minutes to questions or two minutes to the end? >> Two minutes to the end. >> Clarence Page: To the end. Oh my Lord. It's -- this is slipping ahead too ahead. I was -- well, let me ask -- I just forgot the next question I was going to ask. It was a real doozy too. [Inaudible] now. Let me just jump to Martin Luther King's question which he raised in the last year of his life. Where do we go from here? And I'll let -- since you spoke last here, Brooks, let me ask you Isabel, we talk about the parallels with the politics today of what was going on back in reconstruction time and debate being similar. What do you see in our knowledge of reconstruction and Great Migration that could help to inform our decisions about the future? >> Isabel Wilkerson: What a question. And we've got, what? 30 seconds. I've just used up 10 of them. >> Clarence Page: You never worked in television, did you? >> Isabel Wilkerson: In the short time that I have to say anything, I would just say that the -- when people do read the book that I've written, and it's been out a while now, the thing that I hear over and over and over again from all backgrounds is I had no idea. And I think it's time for people to get an idea. I think it's time for people to get an idea. [ Applause ] Yeah. Reacquaint ourselves with our country. If we didn't know it before, we need to know it now. >> Brooks D. Simpson: Well, I've always thought watching, the very interesting thing is to go to the Jefferson Memorial. We were told that all men are created equal, and then you walk out in front of the memorial, and you look at Dr. King or [inaudible] saying, "Show me." >> Clarence Page: Well put [inaudible]. Boy, it's hard to -- yes, the little sign says wrap it up, and it's hard to -- my wife wants to borrow that from you. But [inaudible] right down the road here. But let me say, this is indeed -- you've [inaudible] our appetites today I hope because there is so much that we don't know. You -- one of my questions to you was going to be what do we get wrong, but you mentioned how most people get the Civil War history and reconstruction history wrong. And we really need to know a lot. And I think if we wonder why, just look at the great decisions being made right here in Washington these days about our future. Look to the leaders who know something about history and those who don't. I'm not going to name any names but I'm sure Frederick Douglass would be happy to advise them. With that in mind, I want to thank the Library of Congress, the National Humanities, the National Endowment of the Humanities for giving me this opportunity and we -- and these authors will be available for autographs and books later on in the day. Thank you all for coming. [ Applause ]

Contents

Winners

Fiction

Published
2018 Anna Burns Milkman
2017 Joan Silber Improvement
2016 Louise Erdrich LaRose
2015 Paul Beatty The Sellout
2014 Marilynne Robinson Lila
2013 Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie Americanah
2012 Ben Fountain Billy Lynn's Long Halftime Walk
2011 Edith Pearlman Binocular Vision: New and Selected Stories
2010 Jennifer Egan A Visit from the Goon Squad
2009 Hilary Mantel Wolf Hall
2008 Roberto Bolaño 2666
2007 Junot Diaz The Brief Wondrous Life of Oscar Wao
2006 Kiran Desai The Inheritance of Loss
2005 E. L. Doctorow The March
2004 Marilynne Robinson Gilead
2003 Edward P. Jones The Known World
2002 Ian McEwan Atonement
2001 W.G. Sebald Austerlitz
2000 Jim Crace Being Dead
1999 Jonathan Lethem Motherless Brooklyn
1998 Alice Munro The Love of a Good Woman
1997 Penelope Fitzgerald The Blue Flower
1996 Gina Berriault Women in Their Beds
1995 Stanley Elkin Mrs. Ted Bliss
1994 Carol Shields The Stone Diaries
1993 Ernest J. Gaines A Lesson Before Dying
1992 Cormac McCarthy All the Pretty Horses
1991 Jane Smiley A Thousand Acres
1990 John Updike Rabbit at Rest
1989 E. L. Doctorow Billy Bathgate
1988 Bharati Mukherjee The Middleman and Other Stories
1987 Philip Roth The Counterlife
1986 Reynolds Price Kate Vaiden
1985 Anne Tyler The Accidental Tourist
1984 Louise Erdrich Love Medicine
1983 William Kennedy Ironweed
1982 Stanley Elkin George Mills
1981 John Updike Rabbit Is Rich
1980 Shirley Hazzard The Transit of Venus
1979 Thomas Flanagan The Year of the French
1978 John Cheever The Stories of John Cheever
1977 Toni Morrison Song of Solomon
1976 John Gardner October Light
1975 E. L. Doctorow Ragtime

General nonfiction

Published
2018 Steve Coll Directorate S: The C.I.A. and America’s Secret Wars in Afghanistan and Pakistan
2017 Frances FitzGerald The Evangelicals: The Struggle to Shape America
2016 Matthew Desmond Evicted: Poverty and Profit in the American City
2015 Sam Quinones Dreamland: The True Story of America’s Opiate Epidemic
2014 David Brion Davis The Problem of Slavery in the Age of Emancipation
2013 Sheri Fink Five Days at Memorial: Life and Death in a Storm-Ravaged Hospital
2012 Andrew Solomon Far from the Tree: Parents, Children, and the Search for Identity
2011 Maya Jasanoff Liberty's Exiles: American Loyalists in the Revolutionary World
2010 Isabel Wilkerson The Warmth of Other Suns: The Epic Story of America's Great Migration
2009 Richard Holmes The Age of Wonder: How the Romantic Generation Discovered the Beauty and Terror of Science
2008 Dexter Filkins The Forever War
2007 Harriet A. Washington Medical Apartheid: The Dark History of Medical Experimentation on Black Americans From Colonial Times to the Present
2006 Simon Schama Rough Crossings: Britain, the Slaves and the American Revolution
2005 Svetlana Alexievich Voices from Chernobyl: The Oral History of a Nuclear Disaster
2004 Diarmaid MacCulloch The Reformation: A History
2003 Paul Hendrickson Sons of Mississippi
2002 Samantha Power A Problem from Hell: America and the Age of Genocide
2001 Nicholson Baker Double Fold: Libraries and the Assault on Paper
2000 Ted Conover Newjack: Guarding Sing Sing
1999 Jonathan Weiner Time, Love, Memory: A Great Biologist and His Quest for the Origins of Behavior
1998 Philip Gourevitch We Wish to Inform You That Tomorrow We Will Be Killed With Our Families
1997 Anne Fadiman The Spirit Catches You and You Fall Down
1996 Jonathan Raban Bad Land: An American Romance
1995 Jonathan Harr A Civil Action
1994 Lynn H. Nicholas The Rape of Europa: The Fate of Europe's Treasures in the Third Reich and the Second World War
1993 Alan Lomax The Land Where the Blues Began
1992 Norman Maclean Young Men and Fire
1991 Susan Faludi Backlash: The Undeclared War Against American Women
1990 Shelby Steele The Content of Our Character: A New Vision of Race in America
1989 Michael Dorris The Broken Cord
1988 Taylor Branch Parting the Waters: America in the King Years, 1954–63
1987 Richard Rhodes The Making of the Atomic Bomb
1986 John W. Dower War Without Mercy: Race and Power in the Pacific War
1985 J. Anthony Lukas Common Ground: A Turbulent Decade in the Lives of Three American Families
1984 Freeman Dyson Weapons and Hope
1983 Seymour M. Hersh The Price of Power: Kissinger in the Nixon White House
1982 Robert Caro The Path to Power: The Years of Lyndon Johnson
1981 Stephen Jay Gould The Mismeasure of Man
1980 Ronald Steel Walter Lippmann and the American Century
1979 Telford Taylor Munich: The Price of Peace
1978 Maureen Howard Facts of Life
1978 Garry Wills Inventing America: Jefferson's Declaration of Independence
1977 Walter Jackson Bate Samuel Johnson
1976 Maxine Hong Kingston The Woman Warrior: Memoirs of a Girlhood among Ghosts
1975 R. W. B. Lewis Edith Wharton: A Biography

Memoir/Autobiography

Published
2018 Nora Krug Belonging: A German Reckons With History and Home
2017 Xiaolu Guo Nine Continents: A Memoir In and Out of China
2016 Hope Jahren Lab Girl
2015 Margo Jefferson Negroland
2014 Roz Chast Can’t We Talk About Something More Pleasant?
2013 Amy Wilentz Farewell, Fred Voodoo: A Letter From Haiti
2012 Leanne Shapton Swimming Studies
2011 Mira Bartók The Memory Palace
2010 Darin Strauss Half a Life
2009 Diana Athill Somewhere Towards the End
2008 Ariel Sabar My Father’s Paradise: A Son’s Search for His Jewish Past in Kurdish Iraq
2007 Edwidge Danticat Brother, I'm Dying
2006 Daniel Mendelsohn The Lost: A Search for Six of Six Million
2005 Francine du Plessix Gray Them: A Memoir of Parents

Biography

Published
2018 Christopher Bonanos Flash: The Making of Weegee the Famous
2017 Caroline Fraser Prairie Fires: The American Dreams of Laura Ingalls Wilder
2016 Ruth Franklin Shirley Jackson: A Rather Haunted Life
2015 Charlotte Gordon Romantic Outlaws: The Extraordinary Lives of Mary Wollstonecraft and Her Daughter Mary Shelley
2014 John Lahr Tennessee Williams: Mad Pilgrimage of the Flesh
2013 Leo Damrosch Jonathan Swift: His Life and His World
2012 Robert A. Caro The Passage of Power: The Years of Lyndon Johnson
2011 John Lewis Gaddis George F. Kennan: An American Life
2010 Sarah Bakewell How To Live, Or A Life Of Montaigne
2009 Blake Bailey Cheever: A Life
2008 Patrick French The World is What it is: The Authorized Biography of V.S. Naipaul
2007 Tim Jeal Stanley: The Impossible Life of Africa's Greatest Explorer
2006 Julie Phillips James Tiptree, Jr.: The Double Life of Alice B. Sheldon
2005 Kai Bird and Martin J. Sherwin American Prometheus: The Triumph and Tragedy of J. Robert Oppenheimer

Biography/Autobiography (discontinued)

Published
2004 Mark Stevens and Annalyn Swan De Kooning: An American Master
2003 William Taubman Khrushchev: The Man and His Era
2002 Janet Browne Charles Darwin: The Power of Place, Vol. II
2001 Adam Sisman Boswell's Presumptuous Task: The Making of the Life of Dr.Johnson
2000 Herbert P. Bix Hirohito and the Making of Modern Japan
1999 Henry Wiencek The Hairstons: An American Family in Black and White
1998 Sylvia Nasar A Beautiful Mind
1997 James Tobin Ernie Pyle's War: America's Eyewitness to World War II
1996 Frank McCourt Angela's Ashes
1995 Robert Polito Savage Art: A Biography of Jim Thompson
1994 Mikal Gilmore Shot in the Heart
1993 Edmund White Genet
1992 Carol Brightman Writing Dangerously: Mary McCarthy and Her World
1991 Philip Roth Patrimony: A True Story
1990 Robert A. Caro Means of Ascent: The Years of Lyndon Johnson, Vol. II
1989 Geoffrey C. Ward A First-Class Temperament: The Emergence of Franklin Roosevelt
1988 Richard Ellmann Oscar Wilde
1987 Donald R. Howard Chaucer: His Life, His Works, His World
1986 Theodore Rosengarten Tombee: Portrait of a Cotton Planter
1985 Leon Edel Henry James: A Life
1984 Joseph Frank Dostoevsky: The Years of Ordeal, 1850–1859
1983 Joyce Johnson Minor Characters

Poetry

Published
2018 Ada Limón The Carrying
2017 Layli Long Soldier Whereas
2016 Ishion Hutchinson House of Lords and Commons
2015 Ross Gay Catalogue of Unabashed Gratitude
2014 Claudia Rankine Citizen: An American Lyric
2013 Frank Bidart Metaphysical Dog
2012 D. A. Powell Useless Landscape, or A Guide for Boys
2011 Laura Kasischke Space, In Chains
2010 C.D. Wright One With Others
2009 Rae Armantrout Versed
2008 Juan Felipe Herrera Half the World in Light[a]
2008 August Kleinzahler Sleeping it Off in Rapid City[a]
2007 Mary Jo Bang Elegy
2006 Troy Jollimore Tom Thomson in Purgatory
2005 Jack Gilbert Refusing Heaven
2004 Adrienne Rich The School Among the Ruins
2003 Susan Stewart Columbarium
2002 B.H. Fairchild Early Occult Memory Systems of the Lower Midwest
2001 Albert Goldbarth Saving Lives
2000 Judy Jordan Carolina Ghost Woods
1999 Ruth Stone Ordinary Words
1998 Marie Ponsot The Bird Catcher
1997 Charles Wright Black Zodiac
1996 Robert Hass Sun Under Wood
1995 William Matthews Time and Money
1994 Mark Rudman Rider
1993 Mark Doty My Alexandria
1992 Hayden Carruth Collected Shorter Poems 1946–1991
1991 Albert Goldbarth Heaven and Earth: A Cosmology
1990 Amy Gerstler Bitter Angel
1989 Rodney Jones Transparent Gestures
1988 Donald Hall That One Day
1987 C.K. Williams Flesh and Blood
1986 Edward Hirsch Wild Gratitude
1985 Louise Glück The Triumph of Achilles
1984 Sharon Olds The Dead and the Living
1983 James Merrill The Changing Light at Sandover
1982 Katha Pollitt Antarctic Traveler
1981 A.R. Ammons A Coast of Trees
1980 Frederick Seidel Sunrise
1979 Philip Levine Ashes: Poems New and Old and 7 Years From Somewhere
1978 L. E. Sissman Hello, Darkness: The Collected Poems of L. E. Sissman
1977 Robert Lowell Day by Day
1976 Elizabeth Bishop Geography III
1975 John Ashbery Self-portrait in a Convex Mirror

Criticism

Published
2018 Zadie Smith Feel Free: Essays
2017 Carina Chocano You Play the Girl: On Playboy Bunnies, Stepford Wives, Train Wrecks, & Other Mixed Messages
2016 Carol Anderson White Rage: The Unspoken Truth of Our Racial Divide
2015 Maggie Nelson The Argonauts
2014 Ellen Willis The Essential Ellen Willis, edited by Nona Willis-Aronowitz
2013 Franco Moretti Distant Reading
2012 Marina Warner Stranger Magic: Charmed States and the Arabian Nights
2011 Geoff Dyer Otherwise Known as the Human Condition: Selected Essays and Reviews
2010 Clare Cavanagh Lyric Poetry and Modern Politics: Russia, Poland, and the West
2009 Eula Biss Notes from No Man's Land: American Essays
2008 Seth Lerer Children’s Literature: A Readers’ History: Reader’s History from Aesop to Harry Potter
2007 Alex Ross The Rest Is Noise: Listening to the Twentieth Century
2006 Lawrence Weschler Everything That Rises: A Book of Convergences
2005 William Logan The Undiscovered Country: Poetry in the Age of Tin
2004 Patrick Neate Where You're At: Notes From the Frontline of a Hip-Hop Planet
2003 Rebecca Solnit River of Shadows: Eadweard Muybridge and the Technological Wild West
2002 William H. Gass Tests of Time
2001 Martin Amis The War Against Cliché: Essays and Reviews, 1971–2000
2000 Cynthia Ozick Quarrel & Quandary
1999 Jorge Luis Borges Selected Non-Fictions
1998 Gary Giddins Visions of Jazz: The First Century
1997 Mario Vargas Llosa Making Waves
1996 William H. Gass Finding a Form
1995 Robert Darnton The Forbidden Best-Sellers of Pre-Revolutionary France
1994 Gerald Early The Culture of Bruising: Essays on Prizefighting, Literature, and Modern American Culture
1993 John Dizikes Opera in America: A Cultural History
1992 Garry Wills Lincoln at Gettysburg: The Words That Remade America
1991 Lawrence L. Langer Holocaust Testimonies: The Ruins of Memory
1990 Arthur C. Danto Encounters and Reflections: Art in the Historical Present
1989 John Clive Not by Fact Alone: Essays on the Writing and Reading of History
1988 Clifford Geertz Works and Lives: The Anthropologist as Author
1987 Edwin Denby Dance Writings
1986 Joseph Brodsky Less Than One: Selected Essays
1985 William H. Gass Habitations of the Word: Essays
1984 Robert Hass Twentieth Century Pleasures: Prose on Poetry
1983 John Updike Hugging the Shore: Essays and Criticism
1982 Gore Vidal The Second American Revolution and Other Essays
1981 Virgil Thomson A Virgil Thomson Reader
1980 Helen Vendler Part of Nature, Part of Us: Modern American Poets
1979 Elaine Pagels The Gnostic Gospels
1978 Meyer Schapiro Modern Art: 19th and 20th Centuries (Selected Papers, Volume 2)
1977 Susan Sontag On Photography
1976 Bruno Bettelheim The Uses of Enchantment: The Meaning and Importance and Importance of Fairy Tales
1975 Paul Fussell The Great War and Modern Memory

John Leonard Award

Award for a best first book in any genre.

Published
2018 Tommy Orange There There, novel
2017 Carmen Maria Machado Her Body and Other Parties, short story collection
2016 Yaa Gyasi Homegoing, novel
2015 Kirstin Valdez Quade Night at the Fiestas, short story collection
2014 Phil Klay Redeployment, short story collection
2013 Anthony Marra A Constellation of Vital Phenomena, novel

Ivan Sandrof Lifetime Achievement Award

Ivan Sandrof was one founder of the National Book Critics Circle[1] and its first President.[8]

The Sandrof Award has also been presented as the "Ivan Sandrof Award for Lifetime Achievement in Publishing" and the "Ivan Sandrof Award, Contribution to American Arts & Letters".

2018 Arte Público Press
2017 John McPhee
2016 Margaret Atwood
2015 Wendell Berry
2014 Toni Morrison
2013 Rolando Hinojosa-Smith
2012 Sandra Gilbert
Susan Gubar
2011 Robert Silvers editor of New York Review of Books
2010 Dalkey Archive Press
2009 Joyce Carol Oates
2008 PEN American Center[9]
2007 Emilie Buchwald co-founder of the Milkweed Editions publishing house
2006 John Leonard
2005 Bill Henderson founder of Pushcart Press
2004 Louis D. Rubin, Jr. founder of Algonquin Press, author and editor of more than 50 books
2003 Studs Terkel
2002 Richard Howard
2001 Jason Epstein
2000 Barney Rosset
1999 Lawrence Ferlinghetti
Pauline Kael
1998
1997 Leslie Fiedler
1996 Albert Murray
1995 Alfred Kazin
Elizabeth Hardwick
1994 William Maxwell
1993
1992
1991
1990 Donald Keene
1989 James Laughlin
1988
1987 Robert Giroux
1986
1985
1984 The Library of America
1983
1982 Leslie A. Marchand
1981

Nona Balakian Citation for Excellence in Reviewing

The Balakian Citation is annual. It honors Nona Balakian, who was one of three NBCC founders.[1][10] For 43 years, Balakian was an editor on the staff of the New York Times Book Review.[11] Five finalists are announced each year, one of whom is selected as the winner of the citation. The award has been called "the most prestigious award for book criticism in the country".[12]

Published
2018 Maureen Corrigan literary critic for NPR and The Washington Post
2017 Charles Finch literary critic for The New York Times and others
2016 Michelle Dean literary critic for The New Yorker, New Republic and others
2015 Carlos Lozada of The Washington Post
2014 Alexandra Schwartz of The New Yorker
2013 Katherine A. Powers contributor to many national book review sections, including the Boston Globe and Washington Post. For the second time in the Balakian Citation history it includes a $1,000 cash prize.
2012 William Deresiewicz a contributing writer at The Nation and The American Scholar
2011 Kathryn Schulz book critic at New York magazine
2010 Parul Sehgal of Publishers Weekly
2009 Joan Acocella of The New Yorker
2008 Ron Charles of The Washington Post
2007 Sam Anderson of New York magazine
2006 Steven G. Kellman
2005 Wyatt Mason a contributor to Harper's, The New Yorker, The New Republic
2004 David Orr a contributor to The New York Times Book Review and Poetry Magazine
2003 Scott McLemee
2002 Maureen N. McLane
2001 Michael Gorra
2000 Daniel Mendelsohn
1999 Benjamin Schwarz
1998 Albert Mobilio
1997 Thomas Mallon
1996 Dennis Drabelle
1995 Laurie Stone
1994 JoAnn C. Gutin
1993 Brigitte Frase
1992 Elizabeth Ward
1991 George Scialabba

Finalists

Award year is for the book publication year, currently January 1 to December 31.

2018

The finalists were announced on January 22, 2019.[13] The winners (

Blue ribbon) were announced at the New School in New York on March 14, 2018.[14]

Fiction

Nonfiction

Autobiography

Biography

Criticism

Poetry

John Leonard Prize

Ivan Sandrof Lifetime Achievement Award

Nona Balakian Citation for Excellence in Reviewing

2017

The finalists were announced on January 21, 2018.[16][17] The winners (

Blue ribbon) were announced on March 15, 2018 at the New School in New York.[18]

Fiction

Nonfiction

Autobiography

Biography

  • Blue ribbon
    Caroline Fraser, Prairie Fires: The American Dreams of Laura Ingalls Wilder
  • Edmund Gordon, The Invention of Angela Carter: A Biography
  • Howard Markel, The Kelloggs: The Battling Brothers of Battle Creek
  • William Taubman, Gorbachev: His Life and Times
  • Ken Whyte, Hoover: An Extraordinary Life in Extraordinary Times

Criticism

  • Blue ribbon
    Carina Chocano, You Play the Girl: On Playboy Bunnies, Stepford Wives, Train Wrecks, & Other Mixed Messages
  • Edwidge Danticat, The Art of Death: Writing the Final Story
  • Camille Dungy, Guidebook to Relative Strangers: Journeys into Race, Motherhood, and History
  • Valeria Luiselli, Tell Me How It Ends: An Essay in Forty Questions
  • Kevin Young, Bunk: The Rise of Hoaxes, Humbug, Plagiarists, Phonies, Post-Facts and Fake News

Poetry

Ivan Sandrof Lifetime Achievement Award

John Leonard Prize

Nona Balakian Citation for Excellence in Reviewing

2016

The finalists were announced on January 17, 2017.[19] The winners (

Blue ribbon) were announced March 17, 2017 at the New School in New York.[20]

Fiction

Nonfiction

Autobiography

Biography

  • Nigel Cliff, Moscow Nights: The Van Cliburn Story
  • Blue ribbon
    Ruth Franklin, Shirley Jackson: A Rather Haunted Life
  • Joe Jackson, Black Elk: The Life of an American Visionary
  • Michael Tisserand, Krazy: George Herriman, a Life in Black and White
  • Frances Wilson, Guilty Thing: A Life of Thomas De Quincey

Criticism

Poetry

Ivan Sandrof Lifetime Achievement Award

John Leonard Prize

Nona Balakian Citation for Excellence in Reviewing

2015

The finalists were announced on January 18, 2016.[21] The winners (

Blue ribbon) were announced March 17, 2016 at the New School in New York.[22]

Fiction

Nonfiction

Autobiography

Biography

  • Terry Alford, Fortune’s Fool: The Life of John Wilkes Booth
  • Blue ribbon
    Charlotte Gordon, Romantic Outlaws: The Extraordinary Lives of Mary Wollstonecraft and Her Daughter Mary Shelley
  • T.J. Stiles, Custer's Trials: A Life on the Frontier of a New America
  • Rosemary Sullivan, Stalin's Daughter: The Extraordinary and Tumultuous Life of Svetlana Alliluyeva
  • Karin Wieland and Shelly Frisch, Dietrich and Riefenstahl: Hollywood, Berlin, and a Century in Two Lives

Criticism

Poetry

Ivan Sandrof Lifetime Achievement Award

John Leonard Prize

Nona Balakian Citation for Excellence in Reviewing

2014

The finalists were announced on January 19, 2015.[23] The winners (

Blue ribbon) were announced March 12, 2015.[24]

Fiction

General Nonfiction

Poetry

Autobiography

Biography

Criticism

Ivan Sandrof Lifetime Achievement Award

John Leonard Prize

Nona Balakian Citation for Excellence in Reviewing

2013

The finalists were announced on January 14, 2014.[25][26] The winners (

Blue ribbon) were announced on March 13, 2014.[27]

Fiction

Nonfiction

Poetry

Autobiography

Biography

  • Scott Anderson, Lawrence in Arabia: War, Deceit, Imperial Folly and the Making of the Modern Middle East (Doubleday)
  • Blue ribbon
    Leo Damrosch, Jonathan Swift: His Life and His World (Yale University Press)
  • John Eliot Gardiner, Bach: Music in the Castle of Heaven (Knopf)
  • Linda Leavell, Holding On Upside Down: The Life and Work of Marianne Moore (Farrar, Straus & Giroux)
  • Mark Thompson, Birth Certificate: The Story of Danilo Kis (Cornell University Press)

Criticism

  • Hilton Als, White Girls (McSweeney’s)
  • Mary Beard, Confronting the Classics: Traditions, Adventures and Innovations (Liveright)
  • Jonathan Franzen, The Kraus Project: Essays by Karl Kraus, translated and annotated by Jonathan Franzen with Paul Reitter and Daniel Kehlmann (Farrar, Straus & Giroux)
  • Janet Malcolm, Forty-One False Starts: Essays on Artists and Writers (Farrar, Straus & Giroux)
  • Blue ribbon
    Franco Moretti, Distant Reading (Verso)

Ivan Sandrof Lifetime Achievement Award

John Leonard Prize

Nona Balakian Citation for Excellence in Reviewing

2012

The finalists were announced January 14, 2013.[28] The winners (

Blue ribbon) were announced on February 28, 2013.[29]

Fiction

Nonfiction

Criticism

Poetry

Autobiography

Biography

Ivan Sandrof Lifetime Achievement Award

Nona Balakian Citation for Excellence in Reviewing

2011

The awards (

Blue ribbon) were presented March 8, 2012, at the New School in New York City.[30]

Fiction

Nonfiction

Criticism

Poetry

Autobiography

Biography

Ivan Sandrof Lifetime Achievement Award

Nona Balakian Citation for Excellence in Reviewing

2010

The 2010 winners (

Blue ribbon) were announced March 10, 2011.[31]

Fiction

Nonfiction

Criticism

  • Elif Batuman, The Possessed: Adventures with Russian Books and the People Who Read Them (Farrar, Straus and Giroux)
  • Terry Castle, The Professor and Other Writings (Harper )
  • Blue ribbon
    Clare Cavanagh, Lyric Poetry and Modern Politics: Russia, Poland, and the West (Yale University Press)
  • Susie Linfield, The Cruel Radiance (University of Chicago Press)
  • Ander Monson, Vanishing Point: Not a Memoir (Graywolf)

Biography

  • Blue ribbon
    Sarah Bakewell, How To Live, Or A Life Of Montaigne (Other Press)
  • Selina Hastings, The Secret Lives Of Somerset Maugham: A Biography (Random House)
  • Yunte Huang, Charlie Chan: The Untold Story of the Honorable Detective And His Rendezvous With American History (Norton)
  • Thomas Powers, The Killing Of Crazy Horse (Knopf)
  • Tom Segev, Simon Wiesenthal: The Lives And Legends (Doubleday)

Autobiography

Poetry

Nona Balakian Citation for Excellence in Reviewing

Ivan Sandrof Lifetime Achievement Award

2009

The 2009 winners (

Blue ribbon) were announced March 11, 2010.

Fiction

General nonfiction

Criticism

  • Blue ribbon
    Eula Biss, Notes From No Man's Land: American Essays (Graywolf Press)
  • Stephen Burt, Close Calls with Nonsense: Reading New Poetry (Graywolf Press)
  • Morris Dickstein, Dancing in the Dark: A Cultural History of the Great Depression (Norton)
  • David Hajdu, Heroes and Villains: Essays on Music, Movies, Comics, and Culture (Da Capo Press)
  • Greg Milner, Perfecting Sound Forever: An Aural History of Recorded Music (Faber)

Biography

Autobiography

  • Blue ribbon
    Diana Athill, Somewhere Towards the End (Norton)
  • Debra Gwartney, Live Through This: A Mother's Memoir of Runaway Daughters and Reclaimed Love (Houghton Mifflin Harcourt)
  • Mary Karr, Lit (Harper)
  • Kati Marton, Enemies of the People: My Family's Journey to America (Simon & Schuster)
  • Edmund White, City Boy ( Bloomsbury)

Poetry

Nona Balakian Citation for Excellence in Reviewing

Ivan Sandrof Lifetime Achievement Award

2008

The 2008 winners (

Blue ribbon) were announced March 12, 2009.[32]

Fiction

General nonfiction

Autobiography

Biography

Poetry

Criticism

  • Richard Brody, Everything is Cinema: The Working Life of Jean-Luc Godard (Metropolitan Books)
  • Vivian Gornick, The Men in My Life (Boston Review/MIT)
  • Joel L. Kraemer, Maimonides: The Life and World of One Of Civilization’s Greatest Minds (Doubleday)
  • Blue ribbon
    Seth Lerer, Children’s Literature: A Reader's History from Aesop to Harry Potter (University of Chicago Press)
  • Reginald Shepard, Orpheus in the Bronx: Essays on Identity, Politics, and the Freedom of Poetry (University of Michigan Press)

The Nona Balakian Citation for Excellence in Reviewing

Ivan Sandrof Lifetime Achievement Award

2007

The 2007 award winners (

Blue ribbon) were announced on March 6, 2008.[33][34]

Fiction

General nonfiction

Autobiography

Biography

Poetry

Criticism

The Nona Balakian Citation for Excellence in Reviewing

Ivan Sandrof Lifetime Achievement Award

  • Emilie Buchwald, writer, editor, and founding publisher of Milkweed Editions, in Minneapolis.

Notes

  1. ^ a b c d (Books by) Juan Felipe Herrera and August Kleinzahler shared the award for 2008 Poetry, the only split award through the 2011/2012 cycle.

References

  1. ^ a b c "Thirty-five Years of Quality Writing and Criticism", NBCC. Retrieved February 2, 2012.
  2. ^ The National Book Critics Circle Journal 2:1, Spring 1976, NBCC. Retrieved February 2, 2012.
  3. ^ "NBCC to Add John Leonard Award to Honor First Books; Named After Founding Member". May 2013. National Book Critics Circle.
  4. ^ "Frequently Asked Questions" (no date), NBCC. Retrieved March 7, 2008.
  5. ^ "Board of Directors" (no date), NBCC. Retrieved February 2, 2012.
  6. ^ "Membership" (no date), NBCC. Retrieved February 2, 2012.
  7. ^ "National Book Critics Circle:  FAQs". bookcritics.org. Retrieved September 23, 2015.
  8. ^ The National Book Critics Circle Journal 1:1, March 1, 1975, NBCC. Retrieved February 2, 2012.
  9. ^ a b "National Book Critics Circle". bookcritics.org.
  10. ^ "Balakian Award" (no date), NBCC. Retrieved July 10, 2010.
  11. ^ Glueck, Grace (April 8, 1991). "Nona Balakian, 72, Retired Book Critic And Editor for Times". The New York Times.
  12. ^ "Congratulations to 'New York' Book Critic Sam Anderson!". New York Magazine. January 14, 2008.
  13. ^ "National Book Critics Circle Award Announces Finalists For 2018 Award". National Book Critics Circle. January 22, 2019. Retrieved January 23, 2019.
  14. ^ Hillel Italie (March 14, 2018). "Zadie Smith, Anna Burns among winners of critics prizes". The Washington Post. The Associated Press. Retrieved March 15, 2019.
  15. ^ Rigoberto González (March 14, 2019). "National Book Critics Circle recognizes Arte Público Press as literary force". NBC News. Retrieved March 15, 2019.
  16. ^ "National Book Critics Circle Award Announces Finalists For 2017 Award". National Book Critics Circle. January 21, 2018. Retrieved January 23, 2018.
  17. ^ John Maher (January 22, 2018). "2017 NBCC Awards Finalists Announced". Publishers Weekly. Retrieved January 23, 2018.
  18. ^ Katie Tuttle (March 15, 2018). "National Book Critics Circle Announces Winners for 2017 Awards". National Book Critics Circle. Retrieved March 17, 2018.
  19. ^ Zadie Smith and Michael Chabon Among National Book Critics Circle Finalists, New York Times, Alexandra Alter, January 17, 2017
  20. ^ Calvin Reid (March 17, 2017). "Louise Erdrich, Matthew Desmond Win 2016 NBCC Awards". Publishers Weekly. Retrieved April 25, 2017.
  21. ^ Lorne Manly (January 18, 2016). "National Book Critics Circle Announces Award Nominees". New York Times. Retrieved January 19, 2016.
  22. ^ Alexandra Alter (March 17, 2016). "'The Sellout' Wins National Book Critics Circle's Fiction Award". New York Times. Retrieved March 18, 2016.
  23. ^ "National Book Critics Circle Announces Finalists for Publishing Year 2014". National Book Critics Circle. January 19, 2015. Retrieved January 29, 2015.
  24. ^ Alexandra Alter (March 12, 2015). "'Lila' Honored as Top Fiction by National Book Critics Circle". New York Times. Retrieved March 12, 2015.
  25. ^ Kirsten Reach (January 14, 2014). "NBCC finalists announced". Melville House Publishing. Retrieved January 14, 2014.
  26. ^ "Announcing the National Book Critics Awards Finalists for Publishing Year 2013". National Book Critics Circle. January 14, 2014. Retrieved January 14, 2014.
  27. ^ "National Book Critics Circle Announces Award Winners for Publishing Year 2013". National Book Critics Circle. March 13, 2014. Retrieved March 13, 2014.
  28. ^ John Williams (January 14, 2012). "National Book Critics Circle Names 2012 Award Finalists". New York Times. Retrieved January 15, 2013.
  29. ^ John Williams (March 1, 2013). "Robert A. Caro, Ben Fountain Among National Book Critics Circle Winners". New York Times. Retrieved March 1, 2013.
  30. ^ "NBCC Award Winners for Publishing Year 2011" (press release March 8, 2012). Barbara Hoffert. NBCC. Retrieved March 9, 2012.
  31. ^ "Jennifer Egan and Isabel Wilkerson Win National Book Critics Circle Awards", By JULIE BOSMAN, NY Times, March 10, 2011
  32. ^ "Roberto Bolano's `2666' wins book critics prize", AP, March 13, 2009.
  33. ^ "The National Book Critics Circle Award" (no date), NBCC. Retrieved March 7, 2008.
  34. ^ "The 2007 National Book Critics Circle Award Finalists". Critical Mass: The Blog of the National Book Critics Circle Board of Directors. January 12, 2008. Retrieved March 7, 2008.

External links

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