For release: October 1, 2009
For press information, contact Gabrielle Maxey, 901/678-2843
Richard Bausch, holder of the Moss Chair of Excellence in English at the University
of Memphis, has won the Dayton Literary Peace Prize for his novel Peace. He will be honored at a ceremony Nov. 8 in Dayton, Ohio, where he will accept the
$10,000 first prize in the fiction category.
The Dayton Literary Peace Prize is the only international literary peace prize awarded
in the United States. It stems from the Dayton Peace Prize, which commemorates the
1995 Dayton Peace Accords that ended the war in Bosnia. The award honors the power
of literature to foster peace, social justice, and global understanding.
Peace, set among American solders in Italy during World War II, deals with the corrosiveness
of violence, the human cost of war, and the redemptive power of mercy. It was chosen
over such nominees as the latest Oprah Book Club selection, Say You’re One of Them by Umen Akpan, which won the runner-up prize.
“I am excited to have won the prize, especially when I see the books that were nominated
along with mine,” said Bausch. “It is heartening to be judged worthy of inclusion
with that company, and to be singled out among them is deeply humbling.”
Bausch is the author of 11 novels and seven collections of short stories, including
Take Me Back (which was nominated for the PEN/Faulkner Award), The Last Good Time (which was made into a feature film), Mr. Field’s Daughter, Violence, The Selected Stories of Richard Bausch, In the Night
Season, Thanksgiving Night, and Hello to the Cannibals.
His work has appeared in such publications as The New Yorker, The Atlantic Monthly, Esquire, GQ, and Harper’s, as well as numerous prize-winning collections, including The O. Henry Awards, the Pushcart Prize, and New Stories from the South.
Bausch was born in Fort Benning, Ga., and grew up near Washington, D.C. He earned
a B.A. degree from George Mason University and an M.F.A. degree in creative writing
from the University of Iowa.
Among his many awards, Bausch has received a National Endowment for the Arts fellowship,
a Guggenheim fellowship, the Lila Wallace-Readers Digest Writers Award, and the Award
in Literature from the Academy of Arts and Letters.