Long-lists unveiled for Orwell political writing prize

Fifteen journalists and 22 blogs have made the long-list for this year’s Orwell Prize, which aims to celebrate the best in political writing.

Blogs hosted by the Telegraph, Guardian, BBC, Channel 4, London Evening Standard and New Statesman are among those to have made it through the first round of judging, in what organisers say has been a record year for entries.

The Media Standards Trust, Political Quarterly and Orwell Trust received 205 entries for the blogs award and 87 for the journalism category.

This year’s judges, including Jewish Chronicle political editor Martin Bright, Observer political editor Gaby Hinsliff and journalist and author Michela Wrong, are looking for work which comes closest to George Orwell’s ambition “to make political writing into an art”.

A shortlist will be announced on 29 April and the winners will be announced at an awards ceremony in London on 18 May. The prize in each category is £3,000.

Orwell Prize director Jean Seaton said: “Some of these journalists show us the hidden corners of Britain and the world; some of the writing is razor sharp indictment; many of the journalists in many different ways are intrepid. They all represent different strands of Orwell’s legacy.”

On the blogs category, she added: “Blogging is evolving under our eyes, its purposes shifting. Public service watchdog? Clever reporting from new spaces in the political process? Telling it like it is in uncomfortable places? Different blogs are all of those and other things: it’s an increasingly sophisticated world.”

The longlists are as follows.

Journalists

Rory Carroll – The Guardian; The Observer
David Cohen – Evening Standard
Phillip Collins – The Times
David Gardner – Financial Times
Amelia Gentleman – The Guardian
Andrew Gilligan – Sunday Telegraph; Channel 4; The Guardian; The Spectator
Dominic Lawson – The Independent
Catherine Mayer – TIME
Douglas Murray – Standpoint; The Spectator; Literary Review; Wall Street Journal Europe
Gideon Rachman – Financial Times
Jenni Russell – Sunday Times; The Guardian
Rachel Shabi – The Guardian
Jack Shenker – Prospect; Guernica; The Observer; The Guardian; New Statesman
Jonathan Steele – The Guardian; London Review of Books
Declan Walsh – The Guardian; Granta

Blogs

Adam Wagner – UK Human Rights Blog (http://ukhumanrightsblog.com)
Andrew Sparrow – Politics Live (http://www.guardian.co.uk/politics/series/politics-live-with-andrew-sparrow)
Anton Vowl – Enemies of Reason (http://enemiesofreason.co.uk)
Carl Gardner – Head of Legal (www.headoflegal.com); and Comment is Free, The Wardman Wire, Anglotopia
Cath Elliott – Too Much To Say For Myself (http://toomuchtosayformyself.com/); and Liberal Conspiracy, Comment is Free
Cathy Newman – The FactCheck Blog – Channel 4 News (http://blogs.channel4.com/factcheck/)
Crispian Jago – Science, Reason & Critical Thinking (http://crispian-jago.blogspot.com/)
Dan Hodges – Labour Uncut (http://labour-uncut.co.uk)
Daniel Hannan – Telegraph Blogs (www.hannan.co.uk)
David Osler (http://www.davidosler.com/) and Liberal Conspiracy
Dr Petra’s Blog (http://www.drpetra.co.uk/blog)
Duncan McLaren – Visiting Mabel (http://www.saga.co.uk/health/carers/blog/visiting-mabel/archive.asp)
Graeme Archer – ConservativeHome (http://conservativehome.blogs.com/centreright/graeme_archer/index.html)
Heresiarch – Heresy Corner (http://heresycorner.blogspot.com)
Juliet Jacques – A Transgender Journey (http://www.guardian.co.uk/lifeandstyle/series/transgender-journey)
Molly Bennett – Mid-Wife Crisis (http://mid-wife-crisis-blog.blogspot.com/)
Osama Diab – The Chronikler (http://chronikler.com/) and Comment is Free, New Statesman, Worldpress
Paul Mason – Idle Scrawl – BBC Newsnight (www.bbc.co.uk/paulmason)
Paul Waugh (http://waugh.standard.co.uk) and The Waugh Room (http://www.politicshome.com/waughroom.html)
Penny Red – Laurie Penny – pop culture and radical politics with a feminist twist (http://www.newstatesman.com/blogs/laurie-penny)
Prisoner Ben – Ben’s Prison Blog (http://prisonerben.blogspot.com/)
Sunder Katwala – Next Left (http://www.nextleft.org/) and Left Foot Forward, The Staggers (New Statesman)

Books

Tom Bingham – The Rule of Law (Allen Lane)
Oliver Bullough – Let Our Fame Be Great: Journeys Among the Defiant People of the Caucasus (Penguin)
Tim Butcher – Chasing the Devil: The Search for Africa’s Fighting Spirit (Chatto & Windus)
Ha-Joon Chang – 23 Things They Don’t Tell You About Capitalism (Penguin)
Edmund De Waal – The Hare With Amber Eyes: A Hidden Inheritance (Chatto & Windus)
Helen Dunmore – The Betrayal (Fig Tree)
John A.Hall – Ernest Gellner (Verso)
Owen Hatherley – A Guide to the New Ruins of Great Britain (Verso)
Christopher Hitchens – Hitch-22 (Atlantic Books)
Zaiba Malik – We Are a Muslim, Please (William Heinemann)
Afsaneh Moqadam – Death to the Dictator! (The Bodley Head)
Ian Morris – Why the West Rules for Now (Profile)
Chris Mullin – Decline and Fall (Profile)
Fintan O’Toole – Enough is Enough (Faber)
Steve Richards – Whatever It Takes: The Real Story of Gordon Brown and New Labour (Fourth Estate)
Francis Spufford – Red Plenty (Faber)
D. R. Thorpe – Supermac: The Life of Harold MacMillan (Chatto & Windus)
Natasha Walter – Living Dolls (Virago)

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