University of Warwick: University of Warwick professor shortlisted for prestigious British Academy Book prize

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Dr James Poskett, Associate Professor in the History of Science and Technology at the University of Warwick has been shortlisted for the prestigious British Academy Book Prize for Global Cultural Understanding.

Dr Poskett is one of six shortlisted authors. His book of Horizons: A Global History of Science, challenges the traditional Eurocentric narrative in a radical retelling of the history of science. His book celebrates scientists from Africa, America, Asia and the Pacific and the parts they have played – and continue to play – in scientific development.

Judges regarded the book as, ‘A powerful recasting of the history of science across time and place, and its place in a globalising and increasingly nationalistic world, a narrative of rigour, clarity and much enticement.’

Published earlier this year, it is Dr Poskett’s first book released for general readership, following the publication of Materials of the Mind: Phrenology, Race, and the Global History of Science, 1815-1920 in 2019, and draws extensively on research undertaken at one of the world’s leading universities, The University of Warwick.

The six shortlisted writers will be brought together for a special event in October, before the winner of the prize is announced at a ceremony on Wednesday 26th October.

Dr James Poskett

Dr James Poskett, Associate Professor in the History of Science and Technology at the University of Warwick said: “I’m absolutely delighted that Horizons: A Global History of Science has been shortlisted for the British Academy Book Prize for Global Cultural Understanding 2022.

“This really means a lot, especially as a historian of science. The public are rarely encouraged to see science as part of culture, much less global culture. That’s what motivated me to write Horizons. So, to be shortlisted for such a prestigious prize on this very theme is a true honour.”

Chair of this year’s jury Professor Patrick Wright, Fellow of the British Academy, said: “This is the 10th year of the British Academy Book Prize, which now attracts many entries from across the humanities and social sciences and includes books by journalists and independent writers as well as academics.

“Themes vary greatly and each book on this year’s shortlist greatly impressed the judges, not only for casting new and often quite unexpected light on an issue of global currency and importance, but its imaginative way of combining original research with a style and approach that is accessible to the non-specialist reader.”

Now in its 10th year, the British Academy Book Prize for Global Cultural Understanding, will award £25,000 to the winner for best works of non-fiction, which have contributed to public understanding of world cultures and their interactions.

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