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The 2013 Gelber Prize winner: Chrystia Freeland’s ‘Plutocrats’

Last month, we posted interviews with the authors of the books nominated for the 2013 Gelber Prize, a literary award for the year’s best non-fiction book in English on foreign affairs sponsored by the Munk School of Global Affairs at the University of Toronto in cooperation with Foreign Policy. The panel of five jurors — ...

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Last month, we posted interviews with the authors of the books nominated for the 2013 Gelber Prize, a literary award for the year’s best non-fiction book in English on foreign affairs sponsored by the Munk School of Global Affairs at the University of Toronto in cooperation with Foreign Policy. The panel of five jurors — William Thorsell, Gaynor Lilian Johnson, Walter Russell Meade, Margaret Wente, and FP‘s own Dan Drezner — reviewed books on topics as varied as nuclear politics, the rise of the Soviet Union, and the legacy of the British empire.

Today, Patricia Rubin, president of the Lionel Gelber Prize Board, announced that the 2013 Gelber Prize will go to Chrystia Freeland for her book Plutocrats: The Rise of the New Global Super-Rich and the Fall of Everyone Else. Thorsell, the jury chair, explained the decision, saying, “Plutocrats took the prize for its immediacy and authority about the future — the world that we must comprehend and hope to manage in radically new circumstances.” Here’s the full jury’s citation:

In Plutocrats, Chrystia Freeland describes the evolution of a new global elite of unprecedented economic, social and political power. This mobile, denaturalized community affects the lives of billions as its wealth and values distance it from even the wealthiest of societies.  Freeland explores consequent issues of equity and accountability with fluency and intimacy, capturing the human dimension of a powerful and disturbing phenomenon.

You can hear Freeland’s Gelber Prize interview, conducted by Rob Steiner, former Wall Street Journal correspondent and director of fellowships in international journalism at the Munk School, here.

J. Dana Stuster is a policy analyst at the National Security Network.

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