NEWS RELEASE
View PDF version

AMERICAN ACADEMY OF ARTS AND LETTERS
ANNOUNCES 2011 LITERATURE AWARD WINNERS AND
THE INAUGURAL JOHN UPDIKE AWARD

New York, March 22, 2011 – The American Academy of Arts and Letters announced today the names of 19 writers who will receive its 2011 awards in literature. The awards will be presented in New York in May at the Academy’s annual Ceremonial. The John Updike award of $20,000, established by Mrs. John Updike in memory of her husband, is to be given biennially to a writer in mid-career who has demonstrated consistent excellence. The literature prizes, totaling $185,000 honor both established and emerging writers of fiction, nonfiction, and poetry. The Academy’s 250 members nominate candidates, and a rotating committee of writers selects winners. This year’s committee members were Paula Fox, Philip Levine, Romulus Linney, Alison Lurie, and Joy Williams.

Arts and Letters Awards in Literature

Eight Arts and Letters Awards in Literature of $7500 each are given annually to honor exceptional accomplishment in any genre.   Mark Doty, Alice Fulton, John Koethe, Colum McCann, Suzan-Lori Parks, Alex Ross, Leslie Marmon Silko, and Joseph Stroud

Award of Merit Medal for Drama

$10,000 and a medal to an outstanding playwright.   John Patrick Shanley

Benjamin H. Danks Award

$20,000 to recognize a talented young writer.   Karen Russell

E. M. Forster Award

$20,000 to a young writer from the United Kingdom or Ireland for a stay in the United States. Award jury: Anita Desai, Margaret Drabble, Paul Muldoon.   Rachel Seiffert

Sue Kaufman Prize for First Fiction

$5000 for the best work of first fiction (novel or short stories) published in 2010.   Brando Skyhorse, The Madonnas of Echo Park

Addison M. Metcalf Award

$10,000 to a young writer of fiction, nonfiction, drama, or poetry.   Matthea Harvey

Arthur Rense Poetry Prize

Triennial award of $20,000 to an exceptional poet.   David Wagoner

Rome Fellowships in Literature

A one-year residency (2011²2012) at the American Academy in Rome.   Matt Donovan and Suzanne Rivecca

Rosenthal Family Foundation Award

$10,000 to a young writer of considerable literary talent for a work published in 2010.   Monique Truong, Bitter in the Mouth

John Updike Award

A biennial award of $20,000 to a writer in mid-career who has demonstrated consistent excellence.   Tom Sleigh

Harold D. Vursell Memorial Award

$10,000 to a writer whose work merits recognition for the quality of its prose style.   Thomas Mallon


Press Contact: Jane Bolster, academy AT artsandletters.org, (212) 368-5900.