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The Spirit Level wins Bristol book prize

20th May 2010 - 12 Midnight

The Bristol Festival of Ideas has unveiled the winner of its GBP 10,000 annual book prize.

Richard Wilkinson and Kate Pickett's The Spirit Level: Why More Equal Societies Almost Always Do Better was named as the winner after a 'challenging decision' from the judging panel.

The book debates why social problems such as drug abuse, teenage pregnancy, obesity and violence seem to be more prevalent in rich yet unequal societies.

Andrew Kelly, director of the Bristol Festival of Ideas and chair of the judging panel, said all of the five shortlisted works, which included Dambisa Moyo's Dead Aid and When China Rules the World by Martin Jacques, were worthy of winning.

He added: 'The Spirit Level stood out because it was a new idea based on many decades of research. Richard Wilkinson and Kate Pickett presented their case with great knowledge and in an accessible way.'

Last year, Nick Davies won the Bristol Festival of Ideas book prize for Flat Earth News, which examines the present and future state of British journalism.

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