New Delhi, October 21, 2013: The longlist for the DSC Prize for South Asian Literature 2014 was announced at the Goethe-Institut, Max Mueller Bhavan today, by noted Indian editor, writer and literary critic, Antara Dev Sen, who is chairing the jury panel for the prize. The final list of 15 chosen titles includes 3 works translated from Indian languages and comprises 4 debut novels along with the works of established writers. The longlist reflects a rich and healthy diversity of publishers across geographies including representation from the UK, US and Canada. With several acclaimed novels on the longlist, choosing the final winner for the 2014 edition of the DSC Prize for South Asian Literature would be an interesting and challenging task for the jury panel.
There were over 65 entries for the coveted US $50,000 prize this year, from which the jury has compiled the longlist of 15 books that they feel best represents the eclectic and vibrant voice of the South Asian region. The jury panel comprises international luminaries from the world of literature and books- Antara Dev Sen, editor, writer and literary critic and chair of the DSC Prize jury, Arshia Sattar, an eminent Indian translator, writer and a teacher, Ameena Saiyid, the MD of Oxford University Press in Pakistan, Rosie Boycott, acclaimed British journalist and editor and Paul Yamazaki, a veteran bookseller and one of the most respected names in the book trade in the US.
The longlisted entries contending for the DSC Prize for South Asian Literature 2014 are:
- Anand: Book of Destruction (Translated by Chetana Sachidanandan; Penguin, India)
- Benyamin: Goat Days (Translated by Joseph Koyippalli; Penguin, India)
- Cyrus Mistry: Chronicle of a Corpse Bearer (Aleph Book Company, India)
- Joydeep Roy-Bhattacharya: The Watch (Hogarth/ Random House, UK)
- Manu Joseph: The Illicit Happiness of other people (John Murray, UK & Harper Collins India)
- Mohsin Hamid: How to Get Filthy Rich in Rising Asia (Hamish Hamilton/Penguin, India)
- Nadeem Aslam: The Blind Man’s Garden (Random House, India)
- Nayomi Munaweera: Island of a Thousand Mirrors (Perera Hussein Publishing, Sri Lanka & Hachette India)
- Nilanjana Roy: The Wildings (Aleph Book Company, India)
- Philip Hensher: Scenes from Early Life (Faber & Faber, USA)
- Ru Freeman: On Sal Mal Lane (Graywolf Press, USA)
- Sachin Kundalkar: Cobalt Blue (Translated by Jerry Pinto; Hamish Hamilton/Penguin, India)
- Shyam Selvadurai: The Hungry Ghosts (Double Day Publishing, Canada)
- Sonora Jha: Foreign (Vintage Books/Random House, India)
- Uzma Aslam Khan: Thinner Than Skin (Clockroot Books/Interlink Publishing, USA)
Speaking on the occasion, Antara Dev Sen, Chair of the jury commented “We are delighted to present the longlist for the DSC Prize 2014, which offers a wonderful variety of experiences from India, Pakistan, Sri Lanka and Bangladesh, and reflects much of the exhilarating and bewildering diversity that is the hallmark of South Asian fiction. The list includes celebrated, award-winning authors as well as powerful new voices, and I am particularly happy that it includes novels in translation from other Indian languages.
The novels range from the conventional to the experimental, from amazing tales sprawling across continents and generations to stories brilliantly detailed in a small, almost claustrophobic canvas. Several of these books are about violence – many about war, terrorism, conflict – underscoring what the contemporary South Asian experience is inescapably defined by. Many examine otherness – due to migration, caste or sexual identity, terror, alienation. Through extraordinary storytelling and sensitivity, these novels offer us a sense of history, a sense of loss and the invincibility of hope.” she added.
The jury will now deliberate on the longlist over the next month and the shortlist for the DSC Prize will be announced on Wednesday, November 20, 2013 at The London School of Economics in London. The winner will be subsequently declared at the DSC Jaipur Literature Festival in January 2014.