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RELEASE: 2024 Lionel Gelber Prize awarded to Timothy Garton Ash for Homelands: A Personal History of Europe

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RELEASE: 2024 Lionel Gelber Prize awarded to Timothy Garton Ash for Homelands: A Personal History of Europe

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TORONTO, March 6, 2024/PRNewswire/ -- Judith Gelber, Chair of the Lionel Gelber Prize Board, today announced that the winner of the 2024 Lionel Gelber Prize is Homelands: A Personal History of Europe, by Timothy Garton Ash, published by Yale University Press. Chosen by a jury of international journalists, professionals and academics, the Gelber Prize is awarded annually to the best book on international affairs published in English. The Prize is awarded by the Munk School of Global Affairs

Jury president and university professor Janice Stein reflected: "Timothy Garton Ash's book is wonderfully written. Homelands is the story of freedom, of its decline in Europe after a decade of optimism about the expanding space for liberal democracy in "Europe. Garton Ash has written a love letter to freedom, infused with passion, disappointment and, above all, deep concern that we do not appreciate its fragility and do not treasure it enough." She added that the author's personal commitment is what makes this book so remarkable. "Homelands is not a typical book by a historian who stands aside from history. It is written by someone deeply involved in the history he is living. I think everyone who reads this book will be enriched."

The winning title was selected from a list of masterfully written books that included Power and Progress: Our 1000-year struggle over technology and prosperity, by Daron Acemoglu and Simon Johnson (PublicAffairs, Hatchette Book Group); Underground Empire: How America weaponized the world economy, by Henry Farrell and Abraham Newman (Macmillan, Henry Holt and Co., United States; Allen Lane, an imprint of Penguin Press, United Kingdom). Seven Crashes: The economic crises that shaped globalization, Harold James (Yale University Press) We, The Data: Human rights in the digital age, Wendy Wong (MIT Press).

The 2024 Lionel Gelber Prize has been chosen by Professor Janice Gross Stein (President of the Jury), Professor Rosa Brooks (Washington), Professor Francis J. Gavin (Washington), Iain Martin (London) and Eric Reguly (Rome).

The winner

Homelands: A Personal History of Europe, Timothy Garton Ash (Yale University Press)

Timothy Garton Ash, Europe's "historian of the present", has been "breathing Europe" for half a century. In Homelands he undertakes a journey in time and space across the post-war continent, based on his own notes of many great events, offering vivid first-hand accounts of his protagonists, revisiting the places where his story was made and remembering their triumphs and tragedies through their mark on the present.

Garton Ash offers an account of events seen from the field: a history illustrated with memoirs. He describes how Europe emerged from the devastation of war to rebuild, triumph with the fall of the Berlin Wall, democratize and unite. And then he staggered. It is a unique story of a period of unprecedented progress, along with a lucid account of how much went wrong, from the 2008 financial crisis to the war in Ukraine. From the pen of someone who, despite Brexit, emphatically describes himself as an English European, this book is both a tour d'horizon and a tour de force.

Timothy Garton Ash is Professor of European Studies at the University of Oxford and Senior Fellow at the Hoover Institution at Stanford University. His books include The Magic Lantern, the story of him as an eyewitness to the 1989 revolutions; The File: A Personal History, based on reading his own Stasi file; and History of the Present. He lives in Oxford, England.

The event

The Lionel Gelber Prize lecture and discussion will take place on April 18, 2024 and will be presented in a hybrid format by the Munk School at the University of Toronto.

For more information visit the Lionel Gelber Award website.

The award

The Lionel Gelber Prize was founded in 1989 by Canadian diplomat Lionel Gelber. The winner receives a cash prize of 50,000 Canadian dollars. The prize is awarded annually by the Lionel Gelber Prize Council and the Munk School of Global Affairs.

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