Global Women’s Non-Fiction Manuscript Prize announces judging panel led by Bernardine Evaristo

Bernardine Evaristo is set to lead the judging panel for the inaugural Global Women’s Non-Fiction Manuscript Prize. According to The Bookseller, the renowned author will be joined by a distinguished group of intellectuals, including legal scholar and human rights activist Sylvia Tamale, author-filmmaker Natalie Baszile, literary scholar Carole Boyce Davies, and essayist-novelist Panashe Chigumadzi.

Launched by Cassava Republic Press in October, the prize seeks to redefine the perception of Black women writers, moving beyond their traditional roles as fiction writers, poets and memoirists. With a substantial $30,000 prize, the competition is open to both emerging and established cis, trans and genderqueer Black women writers on a global scale.

The prize aims to unearth the best unpublished non-fiction manuscripts, offering the winner a prestigious publishing contract with Cassava Republic, along with a generous $20,000 advance. Runners-up will not be left empty-handed, as they are set to receive a $5,000 advance each, coupled with a publishing deal.

Evaristo, expressing her enthusiasm for the initiative, stated, “This is a ground-breaking prize which will support, champion and elevate the writings of Black women who are interested in expanding the universe of ideas, the imagination, and critical thinking. I am overjoyed to be chairing such an illustrious panel of leading intellectuals.”

This initiative marks a significant stride toward recognising and fostering the literary contributions of Black women writers in the realm of non-fict


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