Chris Morash of Trinity College Dublin is to take over the role of Chair of the judging committee for the 2020 International Dublin Literary Award. The Award is organised and sponsored by Dublin City Council and at €100,000 is the world’s largest prize for a single novel published in English.
Professor Chris Morash became the inaugural Seamus Heaney Professor of Irish Writing at Trinity College Dublin in 2014 and has also served as the Vice-Provost/Chief Academic Officer of Trinity College Dublin. He has written books on Irish theatre history, Irish media history and Irish famine literature. Prior to his appointment to Trinity, Chris Morash worked in Maynooth University. He was the first chair of the Compliance Committee of the Broadcasting Authority of Ireland (2009-2014), and has been a Member of the Royal Irish Academy since 2007.
Prior to Professor Morash’s appointment, the Award’s judging process had been overseen by the Hon. Eugene R. Sullivan, former Chief Judge of the US Court of Appeals, since 2003.
Commenting on his appointment, Professor Morash said: “Running this Award every year, with its mammoth long-list of up to 150 titles, is one of the things that Dublin City Council does to ensure that the UNESCO City of Literature designation is a living thing. It is the only literary prize where the nominations come from other libraries, from New Zealand to Zeeland in the Netherlands; from Canada to Canberra. In this respect, the Dublin City Libraries are a global hub for libraries all around the planet; this is a global culture in its best sense.”
The International Dublin Literary Award receives its nominations from public libraries in cities around the globe and recognises both writers and translators. Earlier this year, debut novelist Emily Ruskovich won the 2019 Award for her novel Idaho. The judging panel is made up of experienced writers, translators, academics and literary experts from around the world and changes annually. Judges for the 2020 award will be named in November 2019, when the long-listed books will also be also be announced and the process will begin of reducing this list to the eventual winner by June 2020.
Speaking today, Dublin City Librarian, Mairead Owens, said: “As Dublin City Librarian, I am immensely proud of the International Dublin Literary Award and the fact that Dublin City Council brings together millions of readers from around the world every year through the Award. Chris will carry on the Award’s great tradition of integrity as Chair of our respected judging panel and I wish to take this opportunity to wish him every possible success. I also wish to thank former chair, the Hon. Eugene R. Sullivan, who brought a wealth of experience to the role, and whose contribution is very much appreciated by Dublin City Council.”
Also commenting on Professor Morash’s appointment was Lord Mayor of Dublin, Paul McAuliffe, who said: “As Lord Mayor, I welcome the national and international media coverage for the Dublin Literary Award. It is an honour to be the first citizen of a city which values literature and the arts in this way. I welcome Chris Morash as the new chair of the judging committee for the world’s most prestigious literary award.”
Further information on the International Dublin Literary Award can be found here: https://www.dublinliteraryaward.ie/.
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