Magazine article History Today

History Today Awards 2002. (Frontline)

Magazine article History Today

History Today Awards 2002. (Frontline)

Article excerpt

MEDIEVAL IDEAS about population and the family; working-class reading; reconstruction drawings of medieval sites; aerial photographs of Iron Age remains; Egyptian hieroglyph tutors; rehabilitation of the reputation of a 14th-century lady; film of Iwo Jima. Work of many different kinds, on this very diverse list of subjects, is celebrated in the annual History Today awards.

Book of the Year

Every year, in conjunction with the education publisher Longman, we give the Longman-History Today Book of the Year award to the best first or second book on history. This year, the prize was shared, between Jonathan Rose, for The Intellectual Life of the British Working Classes (Yale UP), a pioneering study of the education and reading habits of working men and women from the eighteenth to the twentieth centuries, and Peter Biller for The Measure of Multitude: Population in Medieval Thought (Oxford UP). Biller demonstrates that there was a lively interest, throughout the medieval period, in questions of family size and structure, and the relationship between population and the resources available to society. Both titles are reviewed elsewhere in this issue.

Runner-up was David Parrott's Richelieu's Army: War, Government and Society in France, 1624-1642 (Cambridge UP), a scholarly account which throws much light not only on Richelieu's France but also challenges nationalist assumptions about the development of the French state. Highly commended was The Manchu Way: The Eight Banners and Ethnic Identity in Late Imperial China by Mark C. Elliott (Stanford UP), which looks at the way in which the Manchu dynasty ruled in China for 250 years, while maintaining their ethnic identity.

The judges commented on the very high quality of the many books submitted, and commended a further twelve titles:

* Deception and Democracy in Classical Athens by John Hesk (Cambridge UP)

* Travel and Ethnology in the Renaissance: South India Through European Eyes, 1250-1625 by Joan Pau Rubies (Cambridge UP)

* Oral and Literate Culture in England 1500-1700 by Adam Fox (Oxford UP)

* The Pilgrimage of Grace and the Politics of the 1530s by R. W. Hoyle (Oxford UP)

* Martin Frobisher: Elizabethan Privateer by James McDermott (Yale UP)

* The London Town Garden 1740-1840 by Todd Longstaffe-Gowan (Yale UP)

* The Monied Metropolis: New York City and the Consolidation of the American Bourgeoisie, 1850-1896 by Sven Beckert (Cambridge UP)

* Queen Victoria and the Discovery of the Riviera by Michael Nelson (I.B.Tauris)

* Helmuth von Moltke and the Origins of the First World War by Annika Mombauer (Cambridge UP)

* Night of Stone: Death and Memory in Russia by Catherine Merridale (Granta Books)

* A War of Nerves: Soldiers and Psychiatrists 1914-1994 by Ben Shephard (Jonathan Cape)

* The Germanic Isle: Nazi Perceptions of Britain by Gerwin Strobl (Cambridge UP).

New Generation

This award is given by the Longman-History Today Trust for a book that excites enthusiasm for, or interest in, history among young people (approximately 10-16). …

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