David Cohen Prize for Literature returns for 2013
19th October 2012 - 10:21am
The David Cohen Prize for Literature 2013 has been launched, with writer, critic and broadcaster Mark Lawson returning to judge the GBP 40,000 prize.
Awarded biennially, the David Cohen Prize honours a lifetime's achievement in literature and is billed as the UK and Ireland's answer to the Nobel Prize for Literature.
It was established in 1992 by David and Veronica Cohen and Arts Council England and is awarded to an individual writing in the English language who is a citizen of the United Kingdom or the Republic of Ireland.
Past winners of the distinguished literary award include Seamus Heaney, Julian Barnes, V. S. Naipaul, Harold Pinter, Muriel Spark, Doris Lessing and Beryl Bainbridge.
Lawson, who replaced former Poet Laureate Sir Andrew Motion as chair in 2011, is joined by a 'stellar' judging panel made up of author Kate Summerscale, academic Shirley Chew, novelist and short story writer Sarah Hall, writer, poet and creative writing professor Kathleen Jamie, broadcaster and critic Fiona MacCarthy, poet and critic Daljit Nagra and screenwriter and dramatist Roy Williams.
'In 2011, when Julian Barnes won the David Cohen Prize before going on to take the Man Booker, it was further confirmation of the Cohen's knack of highlighting the writers who really matter,' Lawson said.
'Three previous winners of the David Cohen Prize went on to claim the Nobel Prize for Literature and I think the prize can properly be seen as a sort of Nobel for UK and Irish writers.'
The winner of the David Cohen Prize for Literature also chooses the recipient of the Clarissa Luard Award; a GBP 12,500 pot funded by Arts Council England, which is given to a literature organisation that supports young writers and readers.
The 2013 winner will be announced at a ceremony in London on March 7th next year.