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Five novels shortlisted for South Asian literature award
A jury led by renowned novelists Ritu Menon unveiled the shortlist of five novels for $25,000 DSC South Asian Literature, 2017 award at London School of Economics & Political Science in London last week. The other members of the jury were Senath Walter Perera, Steven Bernstein, Valentine Cunningham and Yasmin Alibhai-Brown.
The jury had earlier announced a long list of 13 novels at the Oxford Bookstore in New Delhi in August 2017. The shortlist represents a diverse mix of established writers and young novelists fast making their mark in the South Asian literary landscape. The shortlisted authors hail from different backgrounds and geographies. It includes three Indian writers, of which two are based outside of the South Asian region, one Sri Lankan writer and one American writer based in India.
The five shortlisted entries contending for the DSC Prize for South Asian Literature 2017 are: Anjali Joseph: The Living (Fourth Estate, HarperCollins, UK); Anuk Arudpragasam: The Story of a Brief Marriage (Granta Books, UK); Aravind Adiga: Selection Day (Fourth Estate, HarperCollins, India); Karan Mahajan: The Association of Small Bombs (Chatto & Windus, UK & Viking, USA & Fourth Estate, HarperCollins, India); Stephen Alter: In the Jungles of the Night (Aleph Book Company, India)
Speaking on the occasion, Ritu Menon, Chair of the jury, said , “After deliberating on the many exceptional qualities of the novels selected, and considering the disparities in our backgrounds, the jury was unanimous in its decision on the five shortlisted titles. All five display a remarkable skill in animating current universal preoccupations in unconventional idioms, and from a distinctively South Asian perspective.”
The jury will now deliberate on the shortlist over the next month and a half, and the winner of The DSC Prize for South Asian Literature 2017 will be announced at a special Award Ceremony at the Dhaka Literary Festival in Bangladesh on November 18th, 2017.
Commenting on the shortlist, Surina Narula, co-founder of the DSC Prize said, “My commendations to the jury panel for coming up with such a brilliant shortlist; it must have been a challenging task to bring down the already impressive set of 13 longlisted novels down to the shortlist of 5 which represent the very best of South Asian fiction writing. The depth, creativity and unique narrative of each novel is indeed both impressive and inspirational in turn. My congratulations to each one of the shortlisted authors and I wish them the very best for the final award ceremony in Dhaka in November.”
The announcement was preceded by a special panel discussion on “Literature & Film” which was moderated by Steven Bernstein who was in conversation with Gurinder Chadha, Michael Wood and Kunal Basu.
The DSC Prize for South Asian Literature prides itself on a thorough and transparent judging process and is modeled on global best practices. The 5 member international jury panel, which comprises literary luminaries drawn from diverse geographies and expertise, is solely responsible for deciding and arriving at the longlist, the shortlist and the ultimate winner and their adjudication is final.
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