ANNOUNCEMENT OF THE 2021 RUNCIMAN BOOK AWARD

The Anglo-Hellenic League
(Registered Charity No. 278892)
The Hellenic Centre, 16/18 Paddington Street, London W1U 5AS
Email: info@anglohellenicleague.org
President and Chief Patron HRH Prince Michael of Kent GCVO
Joint Patrons HE The Greek Ambassador to the Court of St James’s
HBM Ambassador to the Hellenic Republic
Chair John Kittmer PhD

Following conclusion (to be announced shortly) of its sponsorship negotiations, The Anglo-Hellenic League is relaunching and offering a prize, known as the Runciman Award, in honour of the late Sir Steven Runciman, for an original work, wholly or mainly about some aspect of Greece or the world of Hellenism, published in English in any country of the world in its first edition during 2019 or 2020 (and for this purpose 2019 or 2020 must be stated as the year of first publication in the book).

The aim of the award is to stimulate interest in Greek history, literature, language and culture from earliest times to the present; to promote wider knowledge and understanding of Greece (ancient, medieval and contemporary), and of Greece’s values and contribution to civilization; and to encourage good and accessible writing, of which Sir Steven’s works are an example. Books submitted must fall within this framework of subject matter. The prize may be awarded for a work in the field of history, literary studies, cultural studies, translations from Greek literature (of any era), biography, travel and topography, the arts, architecture, archaeology, the environment, social and political sciences or current affairs; or for a work of fiction, poetry or drama, provided that it falls within scope of the aim set out above. Works in translation, with the exception of translations from Greek literature, will not be considered.

In relaunching the Runciman Award in 2021, the bicentenary year of the start of the Greek War of Independence, the Council of the League wishes to reward a book that demonstrates:

  • outstanding quality of research, scholarship, and/or creativity and innovation;
  • outstanding accessibility, quality of writing and appeal to interested and general readers, new and old. The winning book will be worthy of celebration in this important bicentenary year. It must command public attention and stimulate a wide readership. We welcome books representative of all periods of Greek history and culture from antiquity through to our own time. Books dealing with modern Greece (since 1821) and contemporary Greek life have been disappointingly scarce in recent submissions to the Runciman Award. We strongly encourage publishers to submit for the judges’ consideration not only outstanding academic writing, but also outstanding creative works of drama, fiction, poetry and travel writing. In a departure from the practice of previous years, we are requesting that, in the first round, publishers submit to us names and details of nominated books only. Towards the end of December, the judging panel will decide on a long list of books and will formally request that publishers submit copies of those books to the panel in January. It is a condition of nominating names in the first round that the publisher of a longlisted book (or books) will submit, in a timely manner in January 2021, six copies of each longlisted book to the judges and administrator of the award. In selecting books for nomination publishers should note:
  • no more than seven books may be nominated by any one publisher;
  • books of multiple authorship (more than three authors or contributors) or edited books are not eligible;
  • the book must have 2019 or 2020 stated as the year of its first publication inside the book;
  • the RRP of each nominated book should be indicated on the entry form.

The chair of judges in 2021 is Prof. Peter Frankopan. The prize money, new sponsors and composition of the judging panel will be announced by the League early in 2021. How the prize is awarded, whether to one work or more than one, is the responsibility of the judges, whose decision is final.

It is a condition of the award that longlisted and shortlisted books should be available for purchase to readers in the UK at the time of the award ceremony (June 2021). Publishers of longlisted and shortlisted books will be notified by the Anglo-Hellenic League.

Nominations of books must made on the attached entry form and sent by e-mail by Wednesday 16th December 2020 to the administrator, Dr John Kittmer, at john.kittmer@gmail.com. Please do not at this stage send books to the League. We will contact publishers of longlisted books at the end of the year for submission in January 2021. In our confirmation letter, we will confirm the names and addresses to which each of the six copies of longlisted books are to be sent in January 2021.

Queries should be addressed to the administrator by e-mail as above.

for the Council of the League 3 November 2020

Entry form

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