Smith, Penny and Eddo-Lodge make Orwell Prize longlist

Smith, Penny and Eddo-Lodge make Orwell Prize longlist

Ali Smith's Winter (Hamish Hamilton), Laurie Penny's Bitch Doctrine (Bloomsbury) and Reni Eddo-Lodge's Jhalak Prize-winning Why I'm No Longer Talking to White People about Race (Bloomsbury) are among the 10 titles longlisted for the 2018 Orwell Prize for Political Writing.

Books on Islam and the Russian revolution are longlisted alongside a novel spun around Brexit, and social commentary around gender, race and immigration. The longlist features historical writing, fiction and for the first time a graphic novel.

Allen Lane has four books on the longlist: What You Did Not Tell by Mark Mazower, an account of socialism; Lovers and Strangers: An Immigrant History of Post-War Britain by Clair Wills, Age of Anger: A History of the Present by Pankaj Mishra, an exploration of the origins of "the great wave of paranoid hatreds"; and Bread for All: The Origins of the Welfare State by Chris Renwick, about the welfare state.

Also longlisted are The Islamic Enlightenment: The Modern Struggle Between Faith and Reason by Christopher de Bellaigue (Bodley Head), an account of the political and social reformations that transformed the lands of Islam in the 19th and early 20th centuries; Threads from the Refugee Crisis by Kate Evans (Verso), a compelling view into the life of asylum seekers living in Calais’s ‘Jungle’; Testosterone Rex by Cordelia Fine (Icon Books), a book explaining why past and present sex roles are only "serving suggestions" for the future; The Road to Somewhere - The Populist Revolt and the Future of Politics by David Goodhart (Hurst Publishers), an investigation into new global politics; and Poverty Safari by Darren McGarvey (Luath Press), an exploration into deprived communities all across Britain.

The judges for the Orwell Prize for Books are politician academic and journalist Andrew Adonis; literary journalist and artistic director of words and literature of the Bath Festival Alex Clark; author Kit de Waal; and deputy life & arts editor for the Financial Times Lorien Kite.

Adonis said: “It has been an honour to Chair the Orwell Prize, particularly in a year when political analysis, reportage and writing has been so electric and of such high quality. As the world around us shifts in extraordinary, often frightening ways we need writers to explain the world, as Orwell did.”

While de Waal said of the prize: "I’m absolutely delighted to be one of the judges of The Orwell Prize for 2017. It’s such a privilege to read such outstanding books that illuminate a life, a country, an issue. It’s never been more important to read and understand the world around us and to stay informed."

The shortlist for The Orwell Prize for Books will be announced at The Bath Festival on 18th May. The winner of the £3000 prize will be unveiled on 25th June 2018 at The RSA, together with the winner of The Orwell Prize for Journalism and The Orwell Prize for Exposing Britain’s Social Evils.

Previous winners of the Orwell Prize for Books include John Bew for his biography of Clement Attlee (2017), Raja Shehadeh (2008), Alan Johnson (2014), and Andrea Gillies (2010)