Enlightener 2023 Short Lists Announced

Of the twenty titles longlisted for each prize, the jury selected eight best works written in Russian and eight best works translated into Russian

On October 2 organizers announced the books shortlisted for Dmitry Zimin’s Enlightener and Enlightener.Translation prizes (awarded with support of the Zimin Foundation). Of the twenty titles longlisted for each prize, the jury selected eight best works written in Russian and eight best works translated into Russian.

“As usual, our prevailing emotion is regret for being unable to support all the talented authors; we have to compromise. If only we had another spot in a nomination, or maybe two… The genre of popular science is diverse, there’s no firm line drawn between a vividly written book by a professional scientist and a well-researched book by a science popularizer. It is hard to pick the strongest work,” said Alexander Arkhangelsky, head of the Enlightener jury board, as he commented on the jury’s pick.

Four titles have made it into the short list in the nomination "Natural and exact sciences" of the Enlightener:

  1. Ramiz Aliyev. What Happened to the Climate. — Moscow: Paulsen, 2022.
  2. Alexandra Goryashko. A Wild Bird and a Cultured Man. The Common Eider and Homo Sapiens. Fourteen Centuries of Interaction. — St. Petersburg: LD-Print Printing, 2020.
  3. Anton Nelikhov. Dinosaurs of Russia: Past, Present, Future. — Moscow: Alpina Non-Fiction, 2002.
  4. Sergey Samoilenko. Probabilities and Nuisances. The Mathematics of Everyday Life. — Moscow: Mann, Ivanov and Ferber, 2022.

Contestants in the “Humanities” nomination are:

  1. Mikhail Velizhev. The Chaadayev Case: Indeology, Rethoric, and State Authority in Nikolay’s Russia. — Moscow: New Literary Observer, 2022.
  2. Nadezhda Plungian. The Birth of a Soviet Woman. The Worker, the Peasant, the “Ex,” and Others in the Art of 1917–1939. — Moscow: Garage Modern Art Museum, 2022.
  3. Oleg Khlevnyuk. Imposter Corporation. Shadow Economy and Corruption in the Stalinist USSR. — Moscow: New Literary Observer, 2023.
  4. Sergey Shumsky. Educating the AI: the New History of Reason. — Moscow: Alpina Non-Fiction, 2021.

Eight best translated non-fiction books have been shortlisted by Enlightener.Translation’s jury, chaired by Oleg Voskoboynikov.

In the nomination "Natural and exact sciences" of the Enlightener.Translation the jury named four titles:

  1. Peter Godfrey-Smith. Metazoa: Animal Life and the Birth of the Mind. Translated from English by Galina Borodina; scientific editors Anna Vinkelman, Mikhail Nikitin; editor Andrey Zakharov. — Moscow: Alpina Non-Fiction, 2023.
  2. Siddhartha Mukherjee. The Gene: An Intimate History. Translated from English by Olga Volkova, Ksenia Saifulina; editor Olga Volkova. — CORPUS, 2023.
  3. Richard Wrangham. The Goodness Paradox: The Strange Relationship Between Virtue and Violence in Human Evolution. Translated from English by Sofia Dolotovskaya; editor Ekaterina Vladimirskaya. — CORPUS, 2022.
  4. Tom Chivers, David Chivers. How to Read Numbers: A Guide to Statistics in the News (and Knowing When to Trust Them). Translated from English by Natalia Shakhova; edited by Maria Moskvina, Yulia Isakova. — Moscow: Individuum, 2022.

In the “Humanities” nomination of Enlightener.Translation, four titles made it into the finals:

  1. Martha Nussbaum. Political Emotions: Why Love Matters for Justice. Translated from Russian by Sofia Porfiryeva; scientific editor Dmitry Turko; series editor Arseny Kumankov. — Moscow: New Literary Observer, 2023.
  2. Herlinde Pauer-Studer, J. David Velleman. Konrad Morgen: The Conscience of a Nazi Judge. Translated from English by Yury Chizhov; scientific Editor Dmitry Gurin; editor Natalia Nartsissova. — Moscow: Alpina Non-Fiction, 2023.
  3. Nicholas Stargardt. The German War: A Nation Under Arms, 1939–1945. Translated from English by Alexander Kolin; scientific editor Anton Zakharov; editor Anna Zakharova. — Moscow: CoLibri, Azbuka-Atticus, 2023.
  4. Anil Seth. Being You: A New Science of Consciousness. Translated from English by Maria Desyatova; scientific editor Olga Ivashkina; editor Natalia Nartsissova. — Moscow: Alpina Non-Fiction, 2023

PolitProsvet, a special award for social and political nonfiction books, has also named its finalists of 2023. PolitProsvet was launched two years ago as part of Dmitry Zimin’s Enlightener Prize, and its jury is presided over by Ekaterina Shulman. The award highlights books that raise topics relevant to the Russian reader and delve into the nature of current social and political processes in the country.

“The short list for the Enlightener’s new nomination, PolitProsvet, could be called a tentative list. It features books of different genres and intonations: from an academic study through original interpretation of history to a comic book. This diversity reflects our attempts to answer an important question: what constitutes science popularization, especially in the field of politics. No doubt that during this search, we perused books of utmost importance, even necessity,” said journalist and documentary filmmaker Anna Narinskaya, who joined the jury this year.

PolitProsvet’s short list includes five titles:

  1. Vladislav Aksenov. War of Patriotisms: Propaganda and Public Sentiment in Russia during the Collapse of the Empire. – Moscow: New Literary Review, 2023..
  2. Alexander Baunov. The End of the Regime: How Three European Dictatorships Ended. – Moscow: Alpina Publishers, 2023.
  3. Ksenia Novokhatko. Andrei Sakharov. A Fearless Person. – Moscow: Samokat, 2022.
  4. Yuri Plyusnin. Social Structure of Provincial Society. – Moscow: Common Place; Khamovniki Social Research Foundation, 2022.
  5. Sergey Sergeyev. Russian Autocracy. Power and its Boundaries: 1462-1917. – Moscow: Yauza-catalogue, 2023.

Winners of both main prizes and the special award are to be announced November 16.


October 2, 2023

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