Today McGill University announced the finalists for the 2021 Cundill History Prize. The prestigious prize recognizes history writing in English that demonstrates historical scholarship, and “offers originality, literary quality, and a broad appeal.” The jury will reward the winning historian a generous $75,000, and will honor two runners-up with the $10,000 Recognition of Excellence Award.
Below are this year’s finalists.
Marjoleine Kars, Blood on the River (The New Press)
“Marjoleine Kars is a marvellous writer and scholar, using untapped sources to breathe life into both the oppressors and the oppressed in a colony built on slavery and savage violence,” said Michael Ignatieff, the Chair of the Jury. “In Blood on the River she presents us with a quite unforgettable narrative.”
Marie Favereau, The Horde (Belnap Press)
“Marie Favereau’s The Horde is a vividly written history on a vast canvas that enables us to see the Mongol conquerors of Asia and Europe through the eyes of the Mongols themselves,” said Ignatieff. He praised Favereau on the “amazing picture” she offers “of a mobile empire whose very flexibility, ability to integrate and work with alien peoples, accounts for their extraordinary historical impact.”
Rebecca Clifford, Survivors (Yale University Press)
“Rebecca Clifford’s Survivors transforms our understanding of historical trauma and its impact on children,” said Ignatieff. “Beautifully written, intensively researched, unsentimental and profound, it makes an important contribution to our understanding of the Holocaust and its unending impact on those who survived it.”