Governor General's History Award Shortlist Revealed
WINNIPEG, Sept. 3, 2013 /CNW/ - Canada's History society today unveiled the shortlist for Canada's top history prize, the Governor General's History Award for Excellence in Popular Media -The Pierre Berton Award. The three finalists have a lot in common: they all specialize in Canada's military past. In alphabetical order by name or organization they are:
Tim Cook. Over the past 10 years, Tim Cook has been at the forefront of making military history 'more accessible, contextual, vivid, and well-grounded in fact.' As the Great War Historian at the Canadian War Museum he has been project leader in curating six museum exhibitions since the opening in 2005 including the permanent Gallery for the First World War and companion World War I Internet exhibition. He is also a prolific and compelling writer. His first book, No Place to Run: The Canadian Corps and Gas Warfare in the First World War published in 1999 garnered him the prestigious C.P. Stacy Award for his first book. Since then he has authored four other award-winning books about Canadian experience in World War I. His most recent work Warlords:Borden, Mackenzie and Canada's Two World Wars has also been shortlisted for the 2013 Charles A. Taylor Award for Literary Non-fiction.
Legion Magazine. One of Canada's oldest independent magazines, published continuously since 1926, Legion Magazine is also one of the largest with a print and online readership of close to 900,000. Its bi-monthly magazine features the work of Canada's leading military historians, and regularly provides insight into the history of the Royal Canadian Navy, The Royal Canadian Air Force and the Canadian Army. They also introduce readers to our vast collection of war art, produce valued maps, posters and timelines to better illustrate Canada's military experience. Since 2010, Legion Magazine has invested in publishing a series of critically acclaimed special interest publications chronicling World War I, World War II and the Korean War. Competing with every other genre of magazine published in Canada, it is noteworthy that their special edition on World War I:The War That Shaped A Nation received an honourable mention at the National Magazine Awards as well as bronze medal at the National Newsstand Awards in 2011 and their issue War of 1812: The War That Saved Canada was awarded first prize in the prestigious Canadian Cover Awards.
Mark Zuehlke. Fascinated by Canada's military heritage, Mark first set to writing about the role Canadians played in World War II after discussing the Battle of Ortona with several veterans in a Royal Canadian Legion Hall following a Remembrance Day Ceremony in Kelowna, B.C. Discovering no book had been written on this pivotal battle, Mark decided to fill that gap and has now become one of the few Canadians whose livelihood is writing our history. The success of his first book, Ortona: Canada's Epic World War II Battle (1999) encouraged him to develop The Canadian Battle Series, which documents the Canadian World War II experience in ten books including the most recent one Tragedy at Dieppe: Operation Jubilee, August 19, 1942 published last year. However Mark's interest in Canadian history and writing have extended to include the Spanish Civil War, WWI, and reached out to diverse audiences including easier-to-read formats for those with literacy challenges, and young children. He has been involved in two books on the War of 1812: For Honours Sake which he authored and which won the Lela Common Award for Canadian History in 2007; and, an illustrated history about a family during this pivotal period, The Loxley's and the War of 1812 (2012.), for which he wrote the historical summary appendices. His work with the Loxleys has led to his being lead writer on a sequel graphic novel that takes Loxley descendants into the midst of the events that brought about Canada's confederation. Additionally, Mark for the past couple years has been lead historian on the Operation Husky 2013 project and is currently in Sicily participating as one of the marchers on the remembrance trek following the footsteps 1st Canadian Infantry Division took during the island's liberation in summer of 1943. His experiences here will form the foundation for a book in which the march and related ceremonies form the basis for a meditation on the meaning of military remembrance in Canadian culture.
"Next year marks the centenary of the beginning of World War I, and the 70th Anniversary of D-Day and the Normandy Landings. These were two nation-defining events in our history," observed Deborah Morrison, president and CEO of Canada's History Society. "We've very fortunate to have an exceptionally strong pool of talented writers and historians to help Canadians to better understand not just the strategies and outcomes of these wars, but the whole human experience. All three of these finalists are exemplary for their depth of research, the exceptional writing and their ability to connect with readers."
Canada's History society will next strike a national committee to select an award recipient to receive a cash prize of $5,000, a medal, and a trip for two to the official ceremonies in Ottawa. The award is presented by the Governor General at Rideau Hall on Tuesday, November 19th, 2013.
About Canada's History Society
Canada's History Society is a national charitable organization devoted to popularizing Canadian history. In addition to administering the Governor General's History Awards, the Society publishes Canada's History (formerly The Beaver) magazine, and Kayak: Canada's History Magazine for Kids, and also produces a number of educational and online programs to encourage more discovery, celebration, and understanding about our rich history and culture. More details can be found at www.CanadasHistory.ca.
About the Pierre Berton Award
The Pierre Berton Award first established in 1994 to honour achievement in popularizing Canadian history. Canadian writer and popular author, Pierre Berton, was the first recipient. At the Society's invitation, Mr. Berton agreed to have his name associated with the award thereafter.
The award celebrates individuals or organizations that have brought history to a wider audience through writing for popular media including publications, radio, television, film, new media and theatre. Past recipients have included Pierre Berton, Peter C. Newman, Charlotte Gray, Jacques Lacoursière, Jack Granatstein, Will Ferguson, Paul Gross, Des Morton, CBC's Canada: A People's History; The CRB Foundation's Heritage Minutes, Historia TV's "J'ai La Memoire Que Tourne," and the Dictionary for Canadian Biography.
SOURCE: Canada's History
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