The PEN/E.O. Wilson Literary Science Writing Award celebrates writing that exemplifies literary excellence on the subject of physical and biological sciences. The winner receives a cash award of $10,000 and will be honored at the PEN Literary Awards.
The PEN/E. O. Wilson Literary Science Writing Award was founded by scientist and author Dr. Edward O. Wilson, activist and actor Harrison Ford, and the E. O. Wilson Biodiversity Foundation. The award is also supported by James and Cathy Stone. The inaugural award was conferred in 2011.
American Eclipse: A Nation’s Epic Race to Catch the Shadow of the Moon and Win the Glory of the World, David Baron (Liveright)
How Emotions Are Made: The Secret Life of the Brain, Lisa Feldman Barrett (Houghton Mifflin Harcourt)
The Butchering Art: Joseph Lister’s Quest to Transform the Grisly World of Victorian Medicine, Lindsey Fitzharris (Scientific American/Farrar, Straus and Giroux)
The Greatest Story Ever Told—So Far: Why Are We Here?, Lawrence M. Krauss (Atria Books)
The Climate Swerve: Reflections on Mind, Hope, and Survival, Robert Jay Lifton (The New Press)
Growing a Revolution: Bringing Our Soil Back to Life, David Montgomery (W. W. Norton & Company, Inc.)
Where the Water Goes: Life and Death Along the Colorado River, David Owen (Riverhead Books)
No One Cares About Crazy People: The Chaos and Heartbreak of Mental Health in America, Ron Powers (Hachette Books)
The Evolution of Beauty: How Darwin’s Forgotten Theory of Mate Choice Shapes the Animal World—And Us, Richard O. Prum (Doubleday)
Behave: The Biology of Humans at Our Best and Worst, Robert Sapolsky (Penguin Press)
The finalists for the PEN/E.O. Wilson Literary Science Writing Award will be announced in January 2018.
The winner will be celebrated at the 2018 PEN America Literary Awards Ceremony on February 20 at the NYU Skirball Center in NYC.
This year’s PEN/E.O. Wilson Literary Science Writing Award judges are Luke Dittrich, Deanna Fei, and Carl Hart.
Luke Dittrich is a National Magazine Award-winning journalist and a contributing writer at The New York Times Magazine. His on the job experiences include running a marathon in Antarctica and walking 340 miles along the United States/Mexico border. Dittrich’s articles have appeared in anthologies ranging from Best American Crime Writing to Best American Travel Writing to Best American Science and Nature Writing.
Deanna Fei is the acclaimed author of the memoir Girl in Glass: Dispatches from the Edge of Life, named a Books for a Better Life Award winner, a Washington Post Book Club selection, and a Public Books favorite book; and the award-winning novel A Thread of Sky. Her essays have appeared in the New York Times, TIME, Fortune, and Slate. She was born in Flushing, NY, and currently lives in London.
Carl Hart is the Chair of the Department of Psychology at Columbia University. He is also the Dirk Ziff Professor of Psychology in the Departments of Psychology and Psychiatry. Prof. Hart has published nearly 100 scientific articles in the area of neuropsychopharmacology and is co-author of the textbook Drugs, Society and Human Behavior (with Charles Ksir).