2011 Finalists

Letters, Drama, and Music

Fiction
The Privileges by Jonathan Dee (Random House)
A contemporary, wide ranging tale about an elite Manhattan family, moral bankruptcy and the long reach of wealth.

The Surrendered by Chang-rae Lee (Riverhead Books)
A haunting and often heartbreaking epic whose characters explore the deep reverberations of love, devotion and war.
Drama
A Free Man of Color by John Guare
An audacious play spread across a large historical canvas, dealing with serious subjects while retaining a playful intellectual buoyancy.

Detroit by Lisa D'Amour
A contemporary tragicomic play that depicts a slice of desperate life in a declining inner-ring suburb where hope is in foreclosure.
History
Confederate Reckoning: Power and Politics in the Civil War South by Stephanie McCurry (Harvard University Press)
An insightful work analyzing the experience of disenfranchised white women and black slaves who were left when Confederate soldiers headed for the battlefield.

Eden on the Charles: The Making of Boston by Michael Rawson (Harvard University Press))
An impressive selection of case studies that reveal how Boston helped shape the remarkable growth of American cities in the 19th century.
Biography or Autobiography
The Publisher: Henry Luce and His American Century by Alan Brinkley (Alfred A. Knopf)
A fresh, fair minded assessment of a complicated man who transformed the news business and showed busy Americans new ways to see the world.

Mrs. Adams in Winter: A Journey in the Last Days of Napoleon by Michael O'Brien (Farrar, Straus and Giroux)
A graceful account of a remarkable journey by Louisa Catherine Adams, the wife of a future president, who traveled with a young son across a Europe still reeling from warfare.
Poetry
The Common Man by Maurice Manning (Houghton Mifflin Harcourt)
A rich, often poignant collection of poems rooted in a rural Kentucky experiencing change in its culture and landscape.

Break the Glass by Jean Valentine (Copper Canyon Press)
A collection of imaginative poems in which small details can accrue great power and a reader is never sure where any poem might lead.
General Nonfiction
The Shallows: What the Internet Is Doing to Our Brains by Nicholas Carr (W.W. Norton & Company)
A thought provoking exploration of the Internet’s physical and cultural consequences, rendering highly technical material intelligible to the general reader.

Empire of the Summer Moon: Quanah Parker and the Rise and Fall of the Comanches, the Most Powerful Indian Tribe in American History by S.C. Gwynne (Scribner)
A memorable examination of the longest and most brutal of all the wars between European settlers and a single Indian tribe.
Music
Arches by Fred Lerdahl
Premiered on November 19, 2010 at Miller Theatre, Columbia University, a consistently original concerto that sustains an extraordinary level of sensuous invention as it evolves from one moment to the next.

Comala by Ricardo Zohn-Muldoon
Recording released in June, 2010 by Bridge Records, an ambitious cantata that translates into music an influential work of Latin American literature, giving voice to two cultures that intersect within the term “America.”

Journalism

Public Service
Bloomberg News
For the work of Daniel Golden, John Hechinger and John Lauerman that revealed how some for-profit colleges exploit low-income students, leading to a federal crackdown on a multi-billion-dollar industry.

The New York Times
For the work of Alan Schwarz in illuminating the peril of concussions in football and other sports, spurring a national discussion and a re-examination of helmets and of medical and coaching practices.
Breaking News Reporting
Staff of Chicago Tribune
For its coverage of the deaths of two Chicago firefighters who were killed while searching for squatters in an abandoned burning building.

The Miami Herald and El Nuevo Herald, a joint staff entry.
For their coverage of a devastating earthquake in Haiti, often working under extreme conditions.

Staff of The Tennessean, Nashville
For its coverage of the most devastating flood in Middle Tennessee history.
Investigative Reporting
Walt Bogdanich of The New York Times
For his spotlighting of medical radiation errors that injure thousands of Americans, sparking national discussion and remedial steps.

Sam Roe and Jared S. Hopkins of Chicago Tribune
For their investigation, in print and online, of 13 deaths at a home for severely disabled children and young adults, resulting in a state effort to close the facility.
Explanatory Reporting
Staff of The Wall Street Journal
For its penetration of the shadowy world of fraud and abuse in Medicare, probing previously concealed government databases to identify millions of dollars in waste and corrupt practices.

Staff of The Washington Post
For its exploration of how the military is using trauma surgery, brain science and other techniques both old and new to reduce fatalities among the wounded in warfare, telling the story with words, images and other tools.
Local Reporting
Marshall Allen and Alex Richards of Las Vegas Sun
For their compelling reports on patients who suffered preventable injuries and other harm during hospital care, taking advantage of print and digital tools to drive home their findings.

Stanley Nelson of Concordia (La.) Sentinel, a weekly
For his courageous and determined efforts to unravel a long forgotten Ku Klux Klan murder during the Civil Rights era.
National Reporting
David Evans of Bloomberg News
For his revelations of how life insurance companies retained death benefits owed to families of military veterans and other Americans, leading to government investigations and remedial changes.

Staff of The Wall Street Journal
For its examination of the disastrous explosion on the Deepwater Horizon oil rig in the Gulf of Mexico, using detailed reports to hold government and major corporations accountable.
International Reporting
Deborah Sontag of The New York Times
For her coverage of the earthquake in Haiti, steadfastly telling poignant, wide-ranging stories with a lyrical touch and an impressive eye for detail.

Staff of The Wall Street Journal
For its examination of the causes of Europe’s debt crisis, taking readers behind closed doors to meet pivotal characters while illuminating the wider economic, political and social reverberations.
Feature Writing
Tony Bartelme of The Post and Courier, Charleston, SC
For his engaging account of a South Carolina neurosurgeon’s quest to teach brain surgery in Tanzania, possibly providing a new model for health care in developing countries.

Michael M. Phillips of The Wall Street Journal
For his portfolio of deftly written stories that provide war-weary readers with fresh perspective on the conflict in Afghanistan.
Commentary
Phillip Morris of The Plain Dealer, Cleveland, Ohio
For his blend of local storytelling and unpredictable opinions, enlarging the discussion of controversial issues that stir a big city.

Mary Schmich of Chicago Tribune
For her versatile columns exploring life and the concerns of a metropolis with whimsy and poignancy.
Criticism
Jonathan Gold of LA Weekly
For his delightful, authoritative restaurant reviews, escorting readers through a city’s diverse food culture.

Nicolai Ouroussoff of The New York Times
For his well honed architectural criticism, highlighted by ambitious essays on the burst of architectural projects in oil-rich Middle East countries.
Editorial Writing
Jackson Diehl of The Washington Post
For his insightful editorials on foreign affairs, marked by prescient pieces critical of America’s policy toward Egypt well before a revolution erupted there.

John McCormick of Chicago Tribune
For his relentless campaign to reform an unsustainable public pension system that threatens the economic future of Illinois.
Editorial Cartooning
Matt Davies
For cartoons in The Journal News, Westchester County, N.Y., work notably original in concept and execution, offering sharp opinion without shrillness.

Joel Pett of Lexington Herald-Leader
For provocative cartoons that often tackle controversial Kentucky issues, marked by a simple style and a passion for humanity.
Breaking News Photography
Daniel Berehulak and Paula Bronstein of Getty Images
For their compelling portrayal of the human will to survive as historic floods engulfed regions of Pakistan.

Carolyn Cole of Los Angeles Times
For her often haunting images of a massive oil spill in the Gulf of Mexico, capturing the harsh reality of widespread devastation.
Feature Photography
Todd Heisler of The New York Times
For his sensitive portrayal of a large Colombian clan carrying a genetic mutation that causes Alzheimer’s disease in early middle age.

Greg Kahn of The Naples (Fla.) Daily News
For his pictures that show the mixed impact of the recession in Florida – loss of jobs and homes for some but profit for others.