The NUS Singapore Prize is open to works in English, written or translated, that cast a wide net on the period, theme, field, or region of Singapore history. Its goal is to highlight the richness of Singapore’s culture and heritage. The Department of History at NUS administers the prize, which was first established in 2014 with an endowed gift from an anonymous donor.
This year’s winners were selected by a panel of judges, and the winning titles reflect the diversity of topics covered. Those on the shortlist include fiction with a historical slant, such as Ali bin Salim’s The Malaccan Diaries (2019, available here) and Daryl Qilin Yam’s The Invisible Woman (2019, available here). Non-fiction work with a personal slant is also represented, including Hidayah Amin’s Leluhur: Singapore’s Kampong Gelam (2019, available here), which shines a light on the history of an area many now see only as a tourist attraction.
More than 4,000 readers voted in the consumer choice category this time around, roughly twice as many as last year’s cohort of voters. The four winners in this round of reader voting-Ali bin Salim, Daryl Qilin Yam, Pan Zheng Lei (Pan Cheng Lui), and rma cureess (Rama Suresh)-each receive 1,000 Singapore dollars (US$719) in book-purchase vouchers from Books Kinokuniya. The complete list of shortlisted works and authors, categorized by language, can be found here.
A global environmental prize founded by Britain’s Prince William will hold its third annual awards ceremony in Singapore on November 7. The Earthshot Prize supports projects aimed at protecting the planet, and awardees will each receive a grant of GBP 1 million. The ceremony will be accompanied by a series of local activations, and performances by world-renowned artists and musicians.
Winners of the top prize receive a purse of 3,000 Singapore dollars and a commissioned trophy. They will also be offered a 12-month subscription to StoryTel, the online platform for reading and listening to the best of Singapore literature. The top 10 entries will also be featured in a special exhibition at the National Museum of Singapore, from October to November this year. The shortlisted titles will be available for purchase at the exhibition’s launch on October 23. The full list of titles can be viewed at the NMS website.