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The Pulitzer Prize for Nonfiction

The Pulitzer Prize has been awarded by Columbia University since 1917. The awards are given on the recommendations of a board of jurors for Journalism, Letters, Music and Drama. The awards for Letters include Fiction, Poetry, Biography or Autobiography, and History. Listed here are the winners in the Nonfiction category.

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Slavery by Another Name: The Re-Enslavement of Black Americans from the Civil War to World War II2009

Slavery by Another Name: The Re-Enslavement of Black Americans from the Civil War to World War II by Douglas A. Blackmon

Publisher Comments
In this groundbreaking historical exposé, Douglas A. Blackmon brings to light one of the most shameful chapters in American history — an "Age of Neoslavery" that thrived from the aftermath of the Civil War through the dawn of World War II. (read more)

2008

The Years of ExterminationThe Years of Extermination by Saul Friedlander

Publisher Comments
The Years of Extermination, the completion of Saul Friedländer's major historical opus on Nazi Germany and the Jews, explores the convergence of the various aspects of this most systematic and sustained of modern genocides. In this unparalleled work — based on a vast array of documents and an overwhelming choir of voices from diaries, letters, and memoirs — the history of the Holocaust has found its definitive representation. (read more)

2007

The Looming Tower: Al-Qaeda and the Road to 9/11 The Looming Tower: Al-Qaeda and the Road to 9/11 by Lawrence Wright

Review
"A towering achievement. One of the best and more important books of recent years. Lawrence Wright has dug deep into and written well a story every American should know. A masterful combination of reporting and writing." Dan Rather (read more)

2006

Imperial Reckoning: The Untold Story of Britain's Gulag in Kenya by Caroline Elkins

Synopsis
This unforgettable account of the unraveling of the British colonial empire in Kenya is a major work of history detailing the prisons, work camps, and terror that the British imposed on millions just after World War II. It has chilling parallels to America's own imperial project. (read more)

2005

Ghost Wars: The Secret History of the CIA, Afghanistan, and Bin Laden, from the Soviet Invasion to September 10, 2001 by Steve Coll

Review
"[O]bjective — and terrific....Coll...has given us what is certainly the finest historical narrative so far on the origins of Al Qaeda....Ghost Wars provides fresh details and helps explain the motivations behind many crucial decisions." James Risen, The New York Times (read more)

2004

Gulag: A History by Anne Applebaum

Review
"An important book....It is fervently to be hoped that people will read Anne Applebaum's excellent, tautly written, and very damning history." New York Times Book Review (read more)

2003

A Problem from Hell: America and the Age of Genocide by Samantha Power

Review
"The emotional force of Power's argument is carried by moving, sometimes almost unbearable stories of the victims and survivors of such brutality....This is a well-researched and powerful study that is both a history and a call to action." Publishers Weekly (read more)

2002

Carry Me Home: Birmingham, Alabama: The Climactic Battle of the Civil Rights Revolution by Diane McWhorter

Review
"[A] vivid, admirably nuanced, and wide-ranging history of the city that became ground zero in the Civil Rights struggle....A dense, detailed, and insightful history." Kirkus Reviews (read more)

2001 Hirohito and the Making of Modern Japan by Herbert P. Bix
2000 Embracing Defeat: Japan in the Wake of World War II by John W. Dower
1999 The Annals of the Former World by John McPhee
1998 Guns, Germs, and Steel: The Fates of Human Societies by Jared Diamond
1997 Ashes To Ashes by Richard Kluger
1996 The Haunted Land: Facing Europe's Ghosts After Communism by Tina Rosenberg
1995 The Beak of the Finch: A Story of Evolution in Our Time by Jonathan Weiner
1994 Lenin's Tomb: The Last Days of the Soviet Empire by David Remnick
1993 Lincoln at Gettysburg: The Words That Remade America by Garry Wills
1992 Prize: The Epic Quest for Oil, Money and Power by Daniel Yergin
1991 Ants by Bert Holldobler
1990 And Their Children After Them by Michael Williamson
1989 A Bright Shining Lie by Neil Sheehan
1988 The Making of the Atomic Bomb by Richard Rhodes
1987 Arab and Jew: Wounded Spirits in a Promised Land by David K Shipler
1986 Common Ground: A Turbulent Decade in the Lives of Three American Families by J. Anthony Lukas
1985 The Good War: An Oral History of World War II by Studs Terkel
1984 The Social Transformation of American Medicine by Paul Starr
1983 Is There No Place on Earth for Me? by Susan Sheehan
1982 The Soul of a New Machine by Tracy Kidder
1981 Fin-de-siecle Vienna: Politics and Culture by Carl Schorske
1980 Godel, Escher, Bach: An Eternal Golden Braid by Douglas R. Hofstadter
1979 On Human Nature by Edward Osborne Wilson
1978 Dragons of Eden: Speculations on the Evolution of Human Intelligence by Carl Sagan
1977 Beautiful Swimmers by William W Warner
1976 Why Survive?: Being Old in America by Robert N Butler
1975 Pilgrim At Tinker Creek by Annie Dillard
1974 The Denial of Death by Ernest Becker
1973 Fire in the Lake: The Vietnamese and the Americans in Vietnam by Frances Fitzgerald
1972 Stilwell and the American Experience in China, 1911-45 by Barbara W. Tuchman
1971 The Rising Sun by John Toland
1970 Gandhi's Truth: On the Origins of Militant Nonviolence by Erik H Erikson
1969 Armies of the Night: History As a Novel\the Novel As History by Norman Mailer
1968 Rousseau & Revolution Story of CIV Volume 10 by Will Durant
1967 The Problem of Slavery in Western Culture by David Brion Davis
1966 Wandering Through Winter by Edwin Way Teale
1965 O Strange New World by Howard M Jones
1964 Anti-intellectualism in America by Richard Hofstadter
1963 The Guns of August by Barbara W. Tuchman
1962 The Making of the President, 1960 by Theodore H White

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