On 27 November 1895, Alfred Nobel signed his last will and testament, giving the largest share of his fortune to a series of prizes, the Nobel Prizes. As described in Nobel's will one part was dedicated to "the person who shall have produced in the field of literature the most outstanding work in an ideal direction." The Nobel Prize For Literature has been awarded to 107 authors since 1901 and 13 award winners have been earned by women.
The Swedish Academy is responsible for the selection of the Nobel Laureates in Literature, and has 18 members. The Nobel Committee for Literature is the working body that evaluates the nominations and presents its recommendations to the Swedish Academy, and comprises four to five members. The Nobel Prize is one of the most prestigious and lucrative prizes in the world, and is given to a writer for a lifetime's body of work, rather than a single novel, short story or collection. The winner receives eight million Swedish kronor, or about $1.2 million. Nobel Prize Blog
The Jerusalem Prize is the cultural highlight of the Jerusalem International Book Fair. The Prize is awarded to a writer whose work best expresses and promotes the idea of the ''freedom of the in dividual in society.'' The theme was chosen both for its wider international appeal and for its internal Israeli resonance. The modest monetary value of the Prize, currently US $10,000, reflects that it was never intended to be anything more than a symbolic sum. The Jerusalem Prize Blog
The Pulitzer Prize was endowed by Joseph Pulitzer in 1917. It is a high honor award for the achievements and excellence in American journalism, letters, drama and music. The awards are given every year. Since 1917, Columbia University has awarded these prizes on the recommendation of a Pulitzer Prize Board. The Pulitzer Prize for Fiction is one of the most prestigious awards in American literature.
Prizes are awarded yearly in twenty-one categories. In twenty of the categories, each winner receives a certificate and a US$10,000 cash award. Pulitzer Prize Blog
Ion Trewin, Literary Director of the Booker Prize Foundation, discusses the Man Booker Prize.
"From the very beginning of what was originally called the Booker Prize there was just one criterion - the prize would be for 'the best novel in the opinion of the judges'. And 45 years later that is still a key sentence in the rules."
It is a measure of the quality of the original drafting that the main ambitions of the prize have not changed. The aim was to increase the reading of quality fiction and to attract 'the intelligent general audience'. The press release announcing the prize elaborated on this: 'The real success will be a significant increase in the sales of the winning book... that will to some extent be shared not only by the authors who have been shortlisted, but, in the long run, by authors all over the country.'
Man Booker Prize Blog
The Neustadt International Prize for Literature was established as the Books Abroad International Prize for Literature in 1969 by Ivar Ivask.
The Neustadt International Prize for Literature is a biennial award for literature sponsored by the University of Oklahoma and its international literary publication, World Literature Today. It is considered one of the more prestigious international literary prizes, often compared with the Nobel Prize in Literature and referred to as the "American Nobel" because of its record of 30 laureates, candidates or jurors who in 42 years have been awarded Nobel Prizes following their involvement with the Neustadt Prize. Like the Nobel, it is awarded not for any one work, but for an entire body of work. Neustadt International Prize Blog
Every other year IBBY presents the Hans Christian Andersen Awards to a living author and illustrator whose complete works have made a lasting contribution to children's literature.
The Hans Christian Andersen Award is the highest international recognition given to an author and an illustrator of children's books. Her Majesty Queen Margrethe II of Denmark is the Patron of the Andersen Awards.
The nominations are made by the National Sections of IBBY and the recipients are selected by a distinguished international jury of children's literature specialists. The Author's Award has been given since 1956 and the Illustrator's Award since 1966. The Award consists of a gold medal and a diploma, presented at a festive ceremony during the biennial IBBY Congress. A special Andersen Awards issue of IBBY's journal Bookbird presents all the nominees, and documents the selection process. Hans Christian Andersen Blog
The Kafka Prize is designed to honor writers whose works "appeal to readers regardless of their origin, nationality and culture." The award itself is named after one of the most famous novelists and short story writers of the early 20th century,
Today, the Kafka Prize is accompanied by a monetary award worth $10,000. The award is given out every year by Prague's Franz Kafka Society, and recognizes lifetime achievement in literature rather than a single book. Franz Kafka Blog