The Orwell Prize ‘Online’ Ceremony

Thursday 09 July 2020 @ 6PM (TBC)




The Orwell Prize ‘Telescreen’ Ceremony is an exclusive film celebrating the winner’s of this year’s Orwell Prizes. Introduced by Foundation Chair of Trustees Ken Macdonald QC, the film features an interview with George Orwell’s son, and Prize sponsor Richard Blair, as well as messages from this year’s Book Prize winners and Chairs of Judges for the Political Writing and Political Fiction Prizes Stephanie Flanders and Jude Kelly.

The Orwell Prize for Political Writing 2020 has been awarded to Kate Clanchy for Some Kids I Taught and What They Taught Me (Picador). The winner of the Orwell Prize for Political Fiction 2020, sponsored by Richard Blair and A. M. Heath, is The Nickel Boys by Colson Whitehead (Fleet).

The winner of this year’s Orwell Prize for Journalism is Janice Turner for columns on human trafficking and the ‘red wall’, and a feature on clearing her childhood home in Doncaster. This year’s winner of the Orwell Prize for Exposing Britain’s Social Evils is Ian Birrell for his searing investigation into the abuse of vulnerable people within the healthcare system, raising far-reaching questions over their human rights. Listen again to the Times Radio ‘radio’ awards ceremony, hosted by Matt Chorely, featuring interviews with Turner, Birrell and shortlistees the Bristol Cable and Peter Foster, as well as a discussion on the state and future of political journalism with judges Ben Fenton, Abigail Scott Paul and Max Daly here

  • Watch our new series of Orwell Prize shortlist conversations on YouTube, featuring Bernardine Evaristo in conversation with Amelia Gentleman, and Peter Oborne interviewing Charles Moore. We will be releasing two more exclusive videos before 9th July.
  • Follow @TheOrwellPrize on Twitter or @OrwellFoundation on Facebook to see animations from our PR partners Working Word telling the story of the six investigations shortlisted for the JRF Orwell Prize for Exposing Britain’s Social Evils.
  • Head to the New Statesman to read what the Political Writing and Political Fiction shortlists had to say about the art of political writing, with Colson Whitehead, Edna O’Brien, Kate Clanchy, Robert MacFarlane and more.

The Orwell Prizes are the UK’s most prestigious prizes for political writing. Every year, The Orwell Foundation awards prizes for the work which comes closest to George Orwell’s ambition ‘to make political writing into an art’. Each Prize is worth £3,000 to the winner.

We currently award four prizes:

The Foundation is extremely grateful to its partners and sponsors the Political Quarterly, A. M. Heath, Richard Blair, the Joseph Rowntree Foundation and University College London. If you are interested in supporting the Foundation’s work in any way please get in touch.

Featured artwork: André Bergamin/New Statesman