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Inaugural Women's Prize for Non-Fiction announces Longlist

The Women’s Prize Trust – the UK charity which creates equitable opportunities for women in the world of books and masterminds the annual Women’s Prize for Fiction – announces the Longlist for its sister prize, the inaugural Women’s Prize for Non-Fiction.

The new prize – which has long been an aim of the Women’s Prize Trust – was in part born out of research released in 2023 which demonstrated that female non-fiction writers are less visible in the UK national media and less likely to win (or be shortlisted for) book prizes than their male counterparts.

Featuring writers from all over the English-speaking world – America, Australia, Canada, India, Jamaica, the Philippines and the UK – across a wide range of genres and styles, from gripping memoirs and timely books that challenge the status quo, to groundbreaking investigative journalism and innovative new histories, these 16 titles show the range, quality and ambition of non-fiction writing by women over the last year.

The longlist

The 2024 longlist features nine authors who are publishing their first work for a general, non-academic readership. They sit alongside two international bestsellers (Naomi Klein and Anna Funder), a prize-winning author of fiction and non-fiction (Alice Albinia) and two published poets (Cat Bohannon and Safiya Sinclair).

The works are drawn from a wide range of disciplines, from neuroscience, biology, psychoanalysis, history and philosophy to economics, politics, AI, race, art and natural history, with several of the books combining multiple genres within one work. There are memoirs that will enlighten and move the reader – from life within a militant religious sect, to a pilgrimage across Britain’s flatlands; from a narrative that explores life in art and the power of a painting, to a deeply personal story that shows us the limitations of our care system.

The judges

Chair of judges Professor Suzannah Lipscomb says:

‘Reading for the Women’s Prize for Non-Fiction has been a revelation and a joy. I am very proud to
introduce the sensational books that make up the inaugural Longlist. Our selection represents the breadth
of women’s non-fiction writing: science, history, memoir, technology, literary biography, health, linguistics,
investigative journalism, art history, activism, travel-writing and economics. And each author has created
a masterpiece that is worthy of your attention. Buy them, borrow them – above all read them – and in so doing you’ll be elevating women’s voices and female perspectives in a whole range of disciplines and on a
whole host of topics.’

Professor Lipscomb is joined on the judging panel by fair fashion campaigner Venetia La Manna; academic, author and consultant Professor Nicola Rollock; biographer and journalist Anne Sebba; and author and 2018 winner of the Women’s Prize for Fiction Kamila Shamsie.

The judges will narrow down this longlist of 16 books to a shortlist of six, which will be announced on 27 March. The 2024 Women’s Prize for Non-Fiction will be awarded on Thursday 13 June 2024 at the Women’s Prize Trust’s summer party in central London. The winner will receive a cheque for £30,000 and a limited-edition artwork known as the ‘Charlotte’, both gifted by the Charlotte Aitken Trust.

More information can be found on the Women’s Prizes website here.

Get involved

If you work in a library or workplace and would like to promote the longlist, you can download a free digital pack from our shop.

What do you think of the 2024 longlisted titles? Which have you read and what will be added to your TBR pile? Add your comments below, or click any title above to leave a review.

Share your thoughts with us on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram using #WomensPrize.

Keep up with all the latest news on the Women’s Prize website.

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