DSC Prize for South Asian Literature Announces its Long List for 2017

(Image courtesy: AFP Relaxnews)

(Image courtesy: AFP Relaxnews)

The DSC Prize for South Asian Literature announced its long list for the 2017 edition of the literary award

The jury of the DSC Prize for South Asian Literature, now in its seventh year, have announced the longlist for the 2017 award, including 2008 Booker prize winner Aravind Adiga and 2016 National Book Award finalist Karan Mahajan.

The DSC Prize for South Asian Literature is seen as "one of the most prestigious international literary awards specifically focused on South Asian writing." It is open to writers of any ethnicity or nationality, as long as the novel is about, or takes place in, South Asia. Translations are permitted, and the winner is awarded a prize of US$25,000.

The 2017 longlist was announced by jury chair Ritu Menon, the celebrated Indian feminist, writer and publisher, last week. The list features seven Indian writers, three Pakistani writers, two Sri Lankan writers and one India-based American writer, for a total of 13 novels selected from over 60 eligible entries. Three of the works on the longlist are debut works.

Menon explained that the longlist represents "a diverse mix of established writers and debut novelists from different backgrounds and geographies." Other jury members include the Oxford professor Valentine Cunningham, award-winning director Steven Bernstein, journalist and author Yasmin Alibhai-Brown and academic Senath Walter Perera.

The 13 novels selected for this year's DSC Prize for South Asian Literature are: Anjali Joseph's The Living, Anosh Irani's "The Parcel, Anuk Arudpragasam's The Story of a Brief Marriage, Aravind Adiga's Selection Day, Ashok Ferrey's The Ceaseless Chatter of Demons, Hirsh Sawhney's South Haven, Karan Mahajan's The Association of Small Bombs, K.R. Meera's The Poison of Love, Omar Shahid Hamid's The Party Worker, Perumal Murugan's Pyre, Sarvat Hasin's This Wide Night, Shahbano Bilgrami's Those Children, and Stephen Alter's In the Jungles of the Night.

Menon praised the diversity and pertinence of the novels on the longlist: "We were reminded that, although the writers' preoccupations may be universal and their sensibility cosmopolitan, their voices are distinctly South Asian."

Previous winners include 2013's Jeet Thayil (Narcopolis), 2014's Cyrus Mistry (Chronicle of a Corpse Bearer), 2015's Jhumpa Lahiri (The Lowland) and 2016's Anuradha Roy (Sleeping on Jupiter).

The DSC shortlist of five or six books will be announced on September 27, 2017 in London, and the winner revealed at the Dhaka Literary Festival, Bangladesh on November 18, 2017.

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