Dayton Literary Peace Prize

2006 Lifetime Achievement Award

Studs Terkel

“People are hungry for stories. It’s part of our very being. Storytelling is a form of history, of immortality too. It goes from one generation to another.”

— Studs Terkel

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Bio

Studs Terkel’s multifaceted life has produced an equally rich and varied legacy. After graduating from University of Chicago’s Law School in 1934, Terkel pursued acting and appeared on stage, on radio, and in the movies. He has been a playwright, a radio news commentator, a sportscaster, and a film narrator, and has worked as a jazz columnist, a disc jockey, and a music festival host. He even served briefly as a civil service employee but is best known as a radio network personality and as a Pulitzer Prize-winning author of books. His award winning books are based on his extensive conversations with Americans from all walks of life that chronicle the profound and often tumultuous changes in our nation during the twentieth century.

On “The Studs Terkel Program,” which was heard on Chicago’s fine arts radio station WFMT from 1952 to 1997, Terkel interviewed Chicagoans and national and international figures who helped shape the past century. The program included guests who were politicians, writers, activists, labor organizers, performing artists, and architects among others. Terkel is remarkable in the depth of his personal knowledge of the diverse subjects explored on his program and his ability to get others to talk about themselves and what they do best.

Studs Terkel’s work has been highly praised and recognized in the world of arts and letters. He is the recipient of numerous book awards including the Pulitzer Prize for The Good War (1985), the Irita Van Doren Book Award, and two National Book Award nominations. Terkel received the Presidential National Humanities Medal (1999), the National Medal of Humanities (1997), the Illinois Governor’s Award for the Arts, the Clarence Darrow Commemorative Award, and he has been cited by the Friends of Literature for his “unique contributions to the cultural life of Chicago.” His radio programs have been honored with the Prix Italia, three Ohio State Awards, three Major Armstrong Awards, and the George Foster Peabody Award for “The Studs Terkel Program” (1980). He is currently Distinguished Scholar in Residence at the Chicago Historical Society.

Nov. 3, 2008: We are saddened to report that Studs Terkel died on Friday afternoon, October 31, 2008, in his home on the North Side of Chicago.

Reprinted from the Chicago Historical Society’s website:
Studs Terkel: Conversations with America, copyright 2002

 

Book Excerpt 

 

What I bring to the interview is respect. The person recognizes that you respect them because you’re listening. Because you’re listening, they feel good about talking to you. When someone tells me a thing that happened, what do I feel inside? I want to get the story out. It’s for the person who reads it to have the feeling . . . In most cases the person I encounter is not a celebrity; rather the ordinary person. “Ordinary” is a word I loathe. It has a patronizing air. I have come across ordinary people who have done extraordinary things.

Citation

Studs Terkel’s multifaceted life produced an equally rich and varied legacy of research materials. After graduating from University of Chicago’s Law School in 1934, Terkel pursued acting and appeared on stage, in radio, and in the movies. He was a playwright, a radio news commentator, a sportscaster, and a film narrator, and worked as a jazz columnist, a disc jockey, and a music festival host. He even served briefly as a civil service employee but is best known as a radio network personality and as a Pulitzer Prize-winning author of books. His award winning books are based on his extensive conversations with Americans from all walks of life that chronicle the profound and often tumultuous changes in our nation during the twentieth century.  On “The Studs Terkel Program,” which was heard on Chicago’s fine arts radio station WFMT from 1952 to 1997, Terkel interviewed Chicagoans and national and international figures who helped shape the past century. The program included guests who were politicians, writers, activists, labor organizers, performing artists, and architects among others. Terkel was remarkable in the depth of his personal knowledge of the diverse subjects explored on his program and his ability to get others to talk about themselves and what they do best. Many of the interviews he conducted for his books and for his radio program are featured here.

Studs Terkel’s work was highly praised and recognized in the world of arts and letters. He was the recipient of numerous book awards including the Pulitzer Prize for The Good War(1985), the Irita Van Doren Book Award, and two National Book Award nominations. Terkel received the Presidential National Humanities Medal (1999), the National Medal of Humanities (1997), the Illinois Governor’s Award for the Arts, the Clarence Darrow Commemorative Award, and he was cited by the Friends of Literature for his “unique contributions to the cultural life of Chicago.” His radio programs were honored with the Prix Italia, three Ohio State Awards, three Major Armstrong Awards, and the George Foster Peabody Award for The Studs Terkel Program (1980). He was also the first Distinguished Scholar in Residence at the Chicago Historical Society.

-Studs Terkel
Conversations with America

2006 Fiction Winner

Francine Prose - A Changed Man

“Nothing could thrill and delight me more than to have been chosen as this year’s winner of the Dayton Literary Peace Prize. To be a writer in these increasingly violent and war-torn times is to wonder constantly how we can possibly help, to ask ourselves if anything we do, as artists, can possibly make a difference. To learn that someone–a group of readers, a prize committee, even a single reader–has recognized that this is not only my subject and my intention but also my greatest desire is more satisfying and gratifying than anything that I, a writer, can hope to put into words.”

— Francine Prose

Bio

Francine Prose grew up in Brooklyn and attended Radcliffe College, where she majored in English Literature and from which she graduated in 1968. She briefly attended graduate school in Medieval English literature, then left Harvard to live for a year in India, where she began to write her first novel, Judah the Pious. Upon returning home, she sent her novel to a former writing teacher who in turn forwarded it to the legendary editor Harry Ford, then at Atheneum. He bought the book immediately, and it was published when she was 26.

Since then, Prose has written 13 novels, among them Bigfoot Dreams, Primitive People, Household Saints, which was made into a 1993 film directed by Nancy Savoca and starring Lili Taylor, Tracey Ullman and Vincent D’Onofrio, Blue Angel, which was a finalist for the National Book Award, and most recently A Changed Man. Her short story collections include Women and Children First and The Peaceable Kingdom; she has also published three books of translation and a collection of novellas, Guided Tours of Hell. She has written five books for children. Her most recent book was The Lives of the Muses: Nine Women and the Artists They Inspired.

Her stories, reviews, cultural criticism and essays have appeared in such publications as The New Yorker, The New York Times, Atlantic Monthly, Art News, Elle, The Paris Review, and Tin House; she has written frequently on art for The Wall Street Journal. She is a contributing editor at Harpers Magazine, for which she has written such controversial essays as “Scent of a Woman’s Ink” and “I Know Why the Caged Bird Can’t Read.”

Prose is the recipient of a Guggenheim Fellowship, two NEA grants, two New York State Council on Arts grants, a PEN Translation Prize, and two Jewish Book Council Prizes. In 1989, she traveled throughout the former Yugoslavia on a Fulbright Creative Writing Fellowship. She has taught at Harvard, the University of Arizona, the University of Utah, the Iowa Writers’ Workshop, the Sewanee and Bread Loaf Writers’ Conferences. She is on the faculty of the New School MFA Program, a board member of PEN, a member of the New York Institute for the Humanities, and has been a Visiting Writer at the American Academy in Rome. She was one of the first recipients of a Director’s Fellowship at the New York Public Library’s Center for Scholars and Writers.

Francine Prose, the mother of two grown sons, lives in New York City with her husband, the painter and illustrator, Howard Michels.


Book Excerpt


“Hello?” says Vincent.

Silence.  Someone’s there.  It is not a wrong number.  The caller hasn’t hung up.  Someone’s waiting for him to say hello again.  “Hello?”  He can feel the menace thrumming at the other end of the line.

It’s Raymond.  Vincent knows it.  He doesn’t want to say Raymond’s name.  Doesn’t want to, doesn’t have to.  Even so, it’s as if they’re having a meaningful discussion. The silence is Raymond telling him that he knows where he is.  He knows what Vincent did, and why, though maybe not exactly why.  He knows things that Vincent has never seen fit to mention to the people he lives and works with.  This is the real conversation, a talk that Vincent has never stopped having.  It’s amazing how much you can say without having to say one word.

Citation

Francine Prose’s novel A Changed Man boldly portrays the psychological roots of social conflict in the character of Vincent Nolan, a young American neo-Nazi who takes a great leap of faith and attempts to transform his own life for the better.

After some years of drifting unhappily through the lower depths of American society, he turns himself over to a human rights organization called World Brotherhood Watch and clashes both directly and in subtle ways with his own upbringing and immediate family ties.

As he tries to integrate himself into another sort of social movement larger than himself, he confronts Holocaust survivors and survivors of broken marriages and his own miseries, all of this ultimately landing him a place in the forefront of the fast-moving but addled worlds of American philanthropy and American media where he must make life-breaking and life-healing decisions.

Prose’s portrayal of Nolan stands at the center of a story that treats questions of historic global conflict, as Meyer Maslow, head of World Brotherhood Watch, would put it, “one heart at a time…” Heart, for Francine Prose, doesn’t suggest sentimentality. She portrays Nolan’s heart, as William Faulkner put it in his Nobel Prize address, “in conflict with itself.”

In this engaging, sometimes tart, and always brilliantly conducted novel about the wars that rage within everyday human experience, we come to understand that all peace-making and conflict resolution is local.

— Alan Cheuse
2006 finalist judge

2006 Fiction Runner-up

Kevin Haworth - The Discontinuity of Small Things

“I am honored that the Prize Committee thought so highly of my work. My book features characters with very broken lives, who nonetheless work together for the sake of their community. Their motivations vary, but they share a belief in the rescue of the Jews as a necessary part of bringing peace and justice to their world.”

— Kevin Haworth

Bio

Kevin Haworth was born in Brooklyn in 1971. He attended Vassar College in Poughkeepsie, NY, majoring in English and graduating with Honors in 1992. It was at Vassar that he began writing fiction, studying with novelist Thomas Mallon, and was one of twelve Vassar students selected to write a final thesis project focused on creative work.

After graduation, he moved to Israel to participate in Sherut La’am (Service to the People), a year-long volunteer program. He studied Hebrew and worked as an avocado farmer at a kibbutz in the north, then moved to the Negev Desert where he worked in a community center.

In 1995 he received a teaching fellowship to Arizona State University, earning an M.F.A. in Fiction Writing in 1997. While there, he taught fiction workshops and published his first story, “The Story of Jonah and the Whale,” which won the Permafrost Fiction Prize. During that time he also began work on The Discontinuity of Small Things.

In 1997 he moved to Philadelphia, where his wife was attending rabbinical school. His second published story, “The Promised Land,” won the David Dornstein Prize for Young Jewish Writers in 1998. In 1999 and in 2001 he was awarded month-long residencies to the Vermont Studio Center, where he worked as a carpenter and wrote long sections of his novel. In 2006, his novel The Discontinuity of Small Things was recognized as a notable title in the Writers Notes Magazine Book Awards and was also awarded the Samuel Goldberg & Sons Foundation Prize for Jewish Fiction by Emerging Writers.

He now lives in Athens, Ohio, and teaches writing and literature at Ohio University. He is married to Rabbi Danielle Leshaw

Book Excerpt

 

Is it all right?  Aaron said.

It’s fine

The watchman motioned toward Anise.  Let’s go, he said.  It was the first thing he had said all evening.

I didn’t think it would be so small. Aaron said, to no one in particular.

The blond woman began to cry.  Or now Hannah noticed her crying.  It was equal parts wetness and noise.

Get it back on?  Aaron was saying.  He was talking about the lid to the box.  It has to look just like before, he said.  They’re going to look back here.

Don’t tell me things I already know, Michael hissed.

Let’s go, the watchman said again.  Hannah looked at Anise, who looked right back at her for the first time.  With a shrug she pushed off the blond woman and climbed into the truck.

At the last moment, Aaron handed up to the truck a day’s worth of supplies:  dried meat, soft potatoes, a lone apple.  Then Hannah passed forward a few more bills, to pay the driver to open the box and check on them, give them food and water at isolated points along the road, as long as it took.  After the last supplies were handed over the factory worker replaced the lid on the box, pressing down with the flat of his hand for a tight fit.  With a screwdriver he pried a small crack in one of the slats for air.  Then he drew the flaps of the truck closed.

Citation

We are used to acts of bravery that sweep down upon the scene like tornadoes. We are used to humiliating defeats that are deserved paybacks. We are used to the depiction of war in books and film as a series of battles between soldiers in distinguishing uniforms. Especially when dealing with Hitler and the Holocaust, the enemies are now obvious, the looming evil obvious, the unbelievable consequences now the obvious result.

Into this violent world delves Kevin Haworth in his subtle, lovely, and remarkable novel, The Discontinuity of Small Things. Here is a story of the Danish Resistance during World War II, a resistance to the German Occupation that involved almost no violence. Haworth follows the lives of several individuals as they meander through their everyday lives, the German occupation heightening moments here and there until the random moments accumulate into an act of startling courage or startling cowardice, a transforming instant of enlightenment or sorrow. A medical student tries to live his small life, working at the hospital and chasing nurses. A girl watches the parade of German soldiers with her father. A fisherman longs to stay put while his wife wishes to move to Copenhagen. The lives of these non-intersecting characters intersect with a greater force, the tide of History. As they make their small choices, these characters are carried along to a point where they must make fateful life or death choices.

Kevin Haworth, in evocative, spare prose, speaks of the extraordinary occasions that visit average lives, and he reminds us that acts of courage usually begin with people like us.

— Nancy Zafris
2006 finalist judge

2006 Nonfiction Winner

Stephen Walker - Shockwave: Countdown to Hiroshima

“I am truly honored and flattered to be receiving this award for Shockwave, not simply for any literary merits the book might have, but also, more fundamentally, because of its perceived relevance to the cause of peace in a world which grows more unstable and dangerous every day. Sixty years ago, in the very last weeks before the world’s first atomic bomb was dropped on Hiroshima, a nuclear scientist named Leo Szilard wrote these words to President Truman: “A nation which sets the precedent of using these newly-liberated forces of nature for purposes of destruction may have to bear the responsibility of opening the door to an era of devastation on an unimaginable scale.

“For all of us who have followed events in North Korea so recently, those words resonate with frightening prescience. If my book means anything, it is that all humanity lost by the decision to build and deploy atomic weapons. If being the recipient of this award helps make a wider public aware of the reality of war, then it is truly a more worthy honor than any I can imagine.”

— Stephen Walker

Bio

Stephen Walker studied history at Oxford and went on to receive a Master’s Degree in the History of Science at Harvard. He has directed 22 films for both the BBC and the UK’s Channel Four network, includingHiroshima, A Day That Shook The World (nominated for three Emmys in 2004 including Best Director, winning one Emmy), Faking It: Punk to Conductor (winner of the 2003 Montreux Golden Rose, Europe’s most prestigious television award), and Prisoners in Time, starring John Hurt (winner of the Writer’s Guild Award for Best Television Drama).

He has written two books, King of Cannes – Madness, Mayhem and the Movies (Penguin and Bloomsbury 2002), and most recently Shockwave: Countdown to Hiroshima (Harper Collins 2005) which reached the New York Times Bestseller List in August 2005. He is currently completing a feature-film documentary about an American chorus called Young@Heart composed entirely of seniors in their 70s and 80s who sing rock music!


Book Excerpt


Twelve miles north of Santa Fe, New Mexico, Highway 502 breaks westward from route 285 at a little junction called Pojoaque.  I was there in May 2004 to meet a contributor as part of the research for this book.  But halfway up the road I stopped to take in the view.  It was midday and despite the attitude—over 7,000 feet—the sun burned the asphalt, creating shimmering pools of air back along the way I had come.  The silence was overwhelming.  With a sudden shock I realized that on this very same stretch of highway fifty-nine years ago, on a sunny summer’s morning just like this one, a closed black truck escorted by seven carloads of security guards crawled down the mountain from Los Alamos, past the old Indian pueblos, past the place where I had now parked my car, down into the plains of Santa Fe.  The date was Saturday, July 14, 1945.  Inside the black truck, sitting in a sealed lead bucket, was the uranium projectile for an atomic bomb.  That afternoon, it was flown from Albuquerque to San Francisco.  Two days later it sailed beneath the Golden Gate Bridge in the USS Indianapolis on its way across the Pacific.  Twenty-three days later it was carried in the bomb bay of the B 29 Superfortress Enola Gay to the city of Hiroshima, where it exploded killing at least 80,000 people.  The journey started here, in these beautiful mountains with their limitless horizons.  It ended there, at 9:16 A.M. on August 6, 1945, some 6,000 miles away on the other side of the world.  I was standing on a piece of history.

Citation

On a hot summer morning in Hiroshima, Japan, Matsushige Yoshito was on his way to work at the newspaper office downtown when he turned his bicycle around and returned to his house, a barbershop that his wife ran. It promised to be a beautiful day. From below the sky was ablaze with sunshine. From above the branches of the Ota River river shone like arrows, pointing to a clear target. When the bomb fell, Matsushige’s crowded street was completely pulverized except for, miraculously, the barbershop. Unharmed, Matsushige grabbed his camera and two rolls of film and ventured toward the epicenter. For the rest of August 6, 1945, Matsushige was the only press photographer on the scene. He had the scoop of a lifetime. Beyond the immediate landscape of horror was, as well, the horizon of personal fame. What did Matsushige do to ensure his place in history? He took five photographs that day, only five. Five extremely modest photos that show no death. One of the photos is of his barbershop, pristine in the aftermath.

In his book, Shockwave, Countdown to Hiroshima, Stephen Walker, steps us through the days and weeks before Hiroshima as a filmmaker would. We are there, reliving the back-breaking exhaustion and nerves of Oppenheimer and his fellow scientists as they ready the first test of an atomic bomb at Trinity Site in New Mexico, and as well, we are caught up in the excitement of it. We are on the inside of the political drama, frustrated by the same roiling currents that physically drained Henry Stimson, the Secretary of War, overcoming his opposition to the bomb, at the same time spurring President Truman to action. We are both above and below on August 6, 1945, in awe and admiration of pilot Paul Tibbets and his amazing crew, while already too emotionally involved with those living below, Tanaka Toshiaki and Dr. Hida and the schoolgirl Taeko. As Stephen Walker’s camera takes us to the final moment, we still cherish that one great cinematic hope: that the ending will change.

Only later, after finishing the book does the reader realize in Stephen Walker an artistry that matches Matsushige, the eyewitness photographer, when he chose that day not to snap horror after horror. Like Matsushige, Walker exercises restraint over graphic indictment, modesty over ambition, love over hatred, and life over death. From Walker’s vivid writing and monumental research emerges a compelling, even-handed story of moral complexity. How it is that thoughtful actions by thoughtful people can lead to the eruption of something so potentially evil is a counsel to us all, that goodness isn’t an entity that won’t admit evil, that evil isn’t an entity apart but resides in all of us and must be contended against — just as peace resides there, and must be contended for.

– Susan Southard and Alan Taylor
2018 finalist judges

2006 Nonfiction Runner-up

Adam Hochschild - Bury the Chains: Prophets and
Rebels in the Fight to Free an Empire's Slaves

“These men and women from the age of wigs, swords, and stagecoaches seem surprisingly contemporary. This small group of people not only helped to end one of the worst of human injustices in the most powerful empire of its time; they also forged virtually every important tool used by citizens’ movements in democratic countries today. Each of these tools, from the poster to the political book tour, from the consumer boycott to investigative reporting designed to stir people to action, is part of what we take for granted in a democracy. Two and a half centuries ago, few people assumed this. When we wield any of these tools today, we are using techniques devised or perfected by the campaign that held its first meeting at 2 George Yard in 1787. From their successful crusade we still have much to learn.”

— Adam Hochschild

Bio

Adam Hochschild was born in New York City in 1942. His first book, Half the Way Home: a Memoir of Father and Son, was published in 1986. Michiko Kakutani of The New York Times called it “an extraordinarily moving portrait of the complexities and confusions of familial love…firmly grounded in the specifics of a particular time and place, conjuring them up with Proustian detail and affection.” It was followed by The Mirror at Midnight: a South African Journey, and The Unquiet Ghost: Russians Remember Stalin. His 1997 collection, Finding the Trapdoor: Essays, Portraits, Travels, won the PEN/Spielvogel- Diamonstein Award for the Art of the Essay. King Leopold’s Ghost: a Story of Greed, Terror and Heroism in Colonial Africa was a finalist for the 1998 National Book Critics Circle Award. It also won a J. Anthony Lukas award in the United States, and the Duff Cooper Prize in England.

His books have been translated into twelve languages and four of them have been named Notable Books of the Year by The New York Times Book Review. His Bury the Chains: Prophets and Rebels in the Fight to Free an Empire’s Slaves, was a finalist for the 2005 National Book Award in Nonfiction and won the Los Angeles Times Book Prize for History. His last two books have also each won Canada’s Lionel Gelber Prize for the best book on international affairs and the Gold Medal of the California Book Awards. In 2005, he received a Lannan Literary Award for Nonfiction.

Hochschild has written for The New Yorker, Harper’s, The New York Review of Books, Granta, The New York Times Magazine, and many other newspapers and magazines. His articles have won prizes from the Overseas Press Club, the Society of Professional Journalists and elsewhere. He was a co-founder of Mother Jonesmagazine and has been a commentator on National Public Radio’s “All Things Considered.” Hochschild has taught narrative writing at the Graduate School of Journalism at the University of California at Berkeley, and spent half a year as a Fulbright Lecturer in India. He lives in San Francisco with his wife, sociologist and author Arlie Russell Hochschild. They have two sons and one granddaughter.


Book Excerpt


Cities build monuments to kings, prime ministers, and generals, not to citizens with no official position who once gathered in a printing shop.  Yet what these citizens began rippled across the world and we feel its aftereffects still.  It is no wonder that they won the admiration of the first and greatest student of what we now call civil society.  The result of the series of events begun that afternoon in London, wrote Alexis de Tocqueville, was “absolutely without precedent. . . If you pore over the histories of all peoples, I doubt that you will find anything more extraordinary.” To understand how momentous was this beginning, we must picture a world in which the vast majority of people are prisoners.  Most of them have known no other way of life.  They are not free to live or go where they want.  They plant, cultivate, and harvest most of the earth’ major crops. They earn no money from their labor.  Their work often lasts twelve or fourteen hours a day.  Many are subject to cruel whippings or other punishments if they do not work hard enough.  They die young.  They are not chained or bound most of the time, but they are in bondage, part of a global economy based on forced labor.  Such a world would, of course, be unthinkable today. Looking back today, what is even more astonishing than the pervasiveness of slavery in the late 1700’s is how swiftly it died.  The antislavery movement had achieved its goal in little more than one lifetime.

Citation

Nothing short of inspiring, this is the fiercely compelling tale of what is surely the mother-of-all civil rights movements—the drive to rid the world of human slavery.

Twelve men come together to take on a social evil that the great majority of their countrymen see as part of the very “nature of things.” Even more daunting was the fact that so much of English wealth, from import-export shipping, manufacturing and overseas plantations, was based on a slave-economy. Although they drew heavily on the experience of the Quakers, the men had little experience in social protest and civic reform. However, coming together at the end of their work days, they built this successful movement. In the process, they developed a number of the tools, such as direct mail appeals, which are used now around the world to advance various causes. The individual life stories of men such as Thomas Clarkson and William Wilberforce are moving testimonies to what men of good will can accomplish, particularly when they band together to bring about social change.

Adam Hochschild has written a book that is a marvelous example of scholarship and carefully detailed annotation seamlessly melded into a gripping story. The embedded message within the pages of this work clearly suggests that there are still evils in our world that we have taken for granted and which are just waiting for men and women of energy and good will to take on. Someone reading this awakening account couldn’t help but say to him or herself, “Let me look at my world afresh and consider if I can alleviate some of the suffering I now see around me.”

– Kevin Ryan
2006 finalist judges

2006 Book Nominations

1. The Argumentative Indian by Amartya Sen

2. Backward Facing Man by Don Silver

3. Beasts of No Nation by Uzodinma Iweala

4. Between Two Worlds by Zainab Salbi

5. The Black Hole of Auschwitz by Primo Levi

6. Bodies in Motion by Mary Anne Monrahaj

7. Blueprint for Action by Thomas P.M. Barnett

8. Bury the Chains+ by Adam Hochschild

9. By Duty Bound by Ezeli Ware

10. Center of Winter by Marya Hombacher

11. Challenging Empire by Phyllis Bennis

12. A Changed Man** by Francine Prose

13. Crossing Three Wildernesses by U Sam Oeur

14. The Disappearing Girl by Lisa Machoian

15. The Discontinuity of Small Things* by Kevin Haworth

16. Empires of the Word by Nicholas Ostler

17. Even After All This Time by Latifi Afschineh

18. God Without Religion by Sankara Saranam

19. Grand Traverse by Michael Beres

20. Healing Invisible Wounds by Richard F. Millica, M.D.

21. Hero Mama by Karen Zacharias Spears

22. Heroes of a Different Stripe by Olga Bonfiglio

23. In My Brother’s Shadow by Uwe Timm

24. In Perfect Light by Benjamin Saenz

25. In the Rose Garden of the Martyrs by Christopher de Bellaigue

26. Instant Persuasion by Laurie Puhn

** Fiction Winner
++ Nonfiction Winner
* Fiction Runner-up
+ Nonfiction Runner-up

27. The Intellectuals and the Flag by Todd Gitlin

28. Judgment Days by Nick Kotz

29. Lighting the Way by Karenna Gore Schiff

30. Lucky Child by Luong Ung

31. The Lost Boys of Sudan by Mark Bixler

32. My Father’s Rifle by Hiner Saleem

33. A New Earth by Eckhart Tolle

34. Night Draws Near by Anthony Shadid

35. Not One More Mother’s Child by Cindy Sheehan

36. On Hitler’s Mountain by Irmgard Hunt

37. The One-State Solution by Virginia Tilley

38. Painted Drum by Louise Erdrich

39. The Peace Finder by Joan McWilliams

40. Ronald Reagan and His Quest to Abolish Nuclear Weapons by Paul Lettow

41. Shockwave++ by Stephen Walker

42. Standing Alone in Mecca by Asra Nomani

43. They Poured Fire on Us From the Sky by Benson Deng, Alephonsion Deng, Benjamin Ajak

44. Two Lives by Vikram Seth

45. Understanding Iraq by William Polk

46. A View From the Eye of the Storm by Haim Harari

47. Waging Peace by Rob Schultheis

48. War by Candlelight by Daniel Alarcon

49. Where We Have Hope: A Memoir of Zimbabwe by Andrew Meldrum

50. Winning the Race by John McWhorter

51. Yehmen Chronicle by Steven C. Caton

52. Zahir by Paulo Coehlo

2006 Finalists

Fiction

A Changed Man by Francine Prose (HarperCollins):

Francine Prose’s novel A Changed Man boldly portrays the psychological roots of social conflict in the character of Vincent Nolan, a young American neo-Nazi who takes a great leap of faith and attempts to transform his own life for the better.

In Perfect Light by Benjamin Alire Saenz (HarperCollins):

From award-winning poet Benjamin Alire Sáenz comes In Perfect Light, a haunting novel depicting the cruelties of cultural displacement and the resilience of those who are left in its aftermath.

The Discontinuity of Small Things by Kevin Haworth (Quality Words in Print):

This quiet story of the Holocaust chronicles the lives of Danes through the summer of 1943. The discontinuity of small things—the scattered inconveniences, chance meetings, glimpses of injustice, and indulgences of hope,— haphazardly direct individual fate. A hypnotic story of ordinary people caught in a silent maelstrom driven to extraordinary feats.

The Painted Drum by Louise Erdrich (HarperCollins):

Compelling and unforgettable, Louise Erdrich’s Painted Drum explores the often-fraught relationship between mothers and daughters, the strength of family, and the intricate rhythms of grief with all the grace, wit, and startling beauty that characterizes this acclaimed author’s finest work.

War by Candlelight by Daniel Alarcon (Harper Collins):

Something is happening around the globe: mass movements of peoples, dislocations of language and culture in the wake of war and economic crises—simply put, our world is changing. In this exquisite collection, Daniel Alarcón takes the reader from Third World urban centers to the fault lines that divide nations and people.

Zahir: A Novel of Obsession by Paulo Coelho (HarperCollins):

The narrator of The Zahir is a bestselling novelist who lives in Paris and enjoys all the privileges money and celebrity bring. His wife of ten years, Esther, is a war correspondent who has disappeared along with a friend, Mikhail, who may or may not be her lover.

Was Esther kidnapped, murdered, or did she simply escape a marriage that left her unfulfilled? The narrator doesn’t have any answers, but he has plenty of questions of his own. Then one day Mikhail finds the narrator and promises to reunite him with his wife. In his attempt to recapture a lost love, the narrator discovers something unexpected about himself.

Nonfiction

Bury the Chains: Prophets and Rebels in the Fight to Free an Empire’s Slaves by Adam Hochschild (Houghton Mifflin):

An account of the first great human rights crusade, which originated in England in the 1780s and resulted in the freeing of hundreds of thousands of slaves around the world.

In My Brother’s Shadow by Uwe Timm (Farrar, Straus and Giroux):

Uwe Timm was born in Germany in 1940. Just three years later his brother, Karl-Heinz, who was sixteen years his senior and a sapper in the elite SS Death’s Head Division, was killed. His notebook was returned to the family. When Timm decided to write this astonishing memoir, he feared the possibility that his brother’s unit had taken part in the shooting of civilians and Jews. Yet he wanted to piece together his brother’s experience, and also that of his nation, which once considered the qualities of an SS man so exemplary. As Timm unleashes his memories of this devastating time, he also pinpoints the questions that his parents’ generation seemed unable to face, and offers new insights into the impact of the war on ordinary Germans.

Lighting the Way by Karena Gore Shiff (Miramax):

Karenna Gore Schiff’s nationally bestselling narrative tells the fascinating stories of nine influential women, who each in her own way, tackled inequity and advocated change throughout the turbulent twentieth century.

Lucky Child by Loung Ung (Little, Brown and Company):

In this poignant and elegiac memoir, Loung recalls her assimilation into an unfamiliar new culture while struggling to overcome dogged memories of violence and the deep scars of war. In alternating chapters, she gives voice to Chou, the beloved older sister whose life in war-torn Cambodia so easily could have been hers. Highlighting the harsh realities of chance and circumstance in times of war as well as in times of peace, Lucky Child is ultimately a testament to the resilience of the human spirit and to the salvaging strength of family bonds.

Night Draws Near by Anthony Shadid (Henry Holt and Company):

Through the moving stories of individual Iraqis, Shadid shows how Saddam’s downfall paved the way not just for hopes of democracy but also for the importation of jihad and the rise of a bloody insurgency.

Shockwave: Countdown to Hiroshima by Stephen Walker (HarperCollins):

Author Stephen Walker brilliantly re-creates the three terrible weeks leading up to the wartime detonation of the atomic bomb—from the first successful test in the New Mexico desert to the cataclysm and its aftermath—presenting the story through the eyes of pilots, scientists, civilian victims, and world leaders who stood at the center of earth-shattering drama. It is a startling, moving, frightening, and remarkable portrait of an extraordinary event—a shockwave whose repercussions can be felt to this very day.

2006 Finalist Judges

Fiction

Nonfiction

Alan Cheuse

Gordana Filipovich

Kevin Ryan

2006 Awards Ceremony