Jury Announced for the 2021 NSK Neustadt Prize for Children’s Literature

April 14, 2020
A nine-panel collage composed of photographs of the 2021 NSK Jury
Top Row (left to right): Jonathan Auxier, Monica Brown, Tanita S. Davis. Middle row: Adib Khorram, Sonia Patel, Randy Ribay. Bottom row: Cynthia Weill, Tanaya Winder, Janet Wong.

World Literature Today, the University of Oklahoma’s award-winning magazine of international literature and culture, has announced the names of the jury members who will select the finalists for the renowned NSK Neustadt Prize for Children’s Literature. The biennial NSK Prize recognizes the significant achievement of a writer, either over a lifetime or in a single publication, as well as their ongoing, positive impact on children’s literature.

The NSK Prize is awarded to a living writer or illustrator from anywhere in the world. The international jury is composed of esteemed authors who select finalists based on literary merit alone. The jury’s selections are not affected by book sales or publisher influence.

The jury’s list of finalists will be announced on May 15, and final deliberations and voting for the 2021 prize will take place at OU in fall 2020.

The jury for the 2021 NSK Neustadt Prize is composed of the following members:

  • Jonathan Auxier
  • Monica Brown
  • Tanita S. Davis
  • Adib Khorram
  • Sonia Patel
  • Randy Ribay
  • Cynthia Weill
  • Tanaya Winder
  • Janet Wong

The 2021 NSK Prize winner will be announced during the 2020 Neustadt Festival, set for Oct. 19–21. Hosted on the OU Norman campus each fall, the Neustadt Festival is a three-day event featuring artistic performances representing that year’s winning writer’s culture as well as roundtable discussions of literary trends and the author’s literary and cultural influence. At the 2021 festival, which will be hosted in the NSK Prize winner’s honor, the recipient will receive $35,000, a silver medallion and a certificate.

The NSK Prize was first awarded in 2003 to Newberry Medal winner Mildred D. Taylor. Other notable winners include National Book Award recipients Katherine Paterson (2007) and Virginia Euwer Wolff (2011), Naomi Shihab Nye (2013), and Marilyn Nelson (2017), winner of the Poetry Society of America’s Frost Medal. Last year’s NSK Prize was awarded to Margarita Engle, the 2017–2019 U.S. Young People’s Poet Laureate and two-time finalist for the Astrid Lindgren Memorial Award.

The NSK Prize is given in alternating years with the Neustadt International Prize for Literature. The 2020 Neustadt Prize winner is Albanian writer Ismail Kadare. Kadare will be recognized at the 2020 Neustadt Festival, which will celebrate the 50th anniversary of the Neustadt Prize.

The jurors’ full bios can be found on the Neustadt Prize website.