PEN Hessell-Tiltman Prize 2023


PEN Hessell-Tiltman Prize 2023

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 Wednesday 22 November 2023

 7 – 9pm

  At the Weston Library

  Free, booking required

Booking for this event has now closed.

About the event

Join English PEN and the Bodleian Libraries for the announcement of the winner of the 2023 PEN Hessell-Tiltman Prize.

The annual prize is awarded to a book of high literary merit – that is, not primarily written for the academic market – that covers any historical period.

Richard Ovenden, Bodley’s Librarian, will address the audience, before the six shortlisted authors join in-person and virtually to read from their nominated books and appear in conversation with the judges.

The evening will end with the announcement of the 2023 prize winner, followed by a drinks reception and an opportunity to buy all of the shortlisted titles.

This year’s shortlist is:

  • Abolition Revolution by Aviah Sarah Day and Shanice Octavia McBean (Pluto Press)
  • Accidental Gods: On Men Unwittingly Turned Divine by Anna Della Subin (Granta)
  • A New Formation: How Black Footballers Shaped the Modern Game by Calum Jacobs (Merky Books)
  • A Tale of Exile, Justice and Britain's Colonial Legacy by Philippe Sands (Weidenfeld and Nicolson)
  • On Bloody Sunday: A New History Of The Day And Its Aftermath - By Those Who Were There by Julieann Campbell (Monoray)
  • Uncommon Wealth: Britain and the Aftermath of Empire by Kojo Karam (John Murray Press)

Find out more about this year's shortlist.

This year’s judging panel for the PEN Hessell-Tiltman Prize 2023 is chaired by author and academic Dan Hicks. He is joined by environmental humanities scholar and art historian Sria Chatterjee, and artistic director of the Migration Museum Aditi Anand.

Marjorie Hessell-Tiltman was a member of PEN during the 1960s and 1970s. On her death in 1999 she bequeathed £100,000 to the PEN Literary Foundation to found a prize in her name.

About English PEN


The logo for English PEN

English PEN is one of the world's oldest human rights organisations, championing the freedom to write and read. We are the founding centre of PEN International, a worldwide writers’ association with 145 centres in more than 100 countries . With the support of our members – a community of readers, writers and activists – we protect freedom of expression whenever it is under attack, support writers facing persecution around the world, and celebrate contemporary international writing with literary prizes, grants, events, and our online magazine PEN Transmissions. English PEN's work is made possible through core funding from Arts Council England and the TS Eliot Foundation alongside the support of members, project partners and Silver PEN partners.

Website | Twitter: @englishpen | Instagram: @englishpen_

 Booking information

This event takes place in person at the Weston Library, and booking is required. Once you have booked your place, the ticketing system will send you an automated confirmation.

Booking is via Eventbrite.

Booking for this event has now closed.


Sir Victor Blank Lecture Theatre, Weston Library, Broad Street, Oxford, OX1 3BG.

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 Wheelchair access

The Weston Library is wheelchair accessible.

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