Monday, April 16, 2012

Announcing the List of 2012 Pulitzer Prize Winners

Pulitzer Prize Medal

I am always looking forward to award-giving bodies that give credit to the achievements of society, may it be in the field of arts, media, literature, and personal achievements. They are the force behind why most people or institutions continue with their endeavors to help, entertain and bring changes to our society. And one recent award-giving event this year is the announcement of the 2012 Pulitzer Prize winners on April 16, 2012.

Pulitzer Prize is a United States award-giving body that gives recognition on achievements in newspaper, online journalism, musical composition and, of course, literature. It started in 1917 in the honor of its founder, Joseph Pulitzer. There are twenty one categories under this award and only one receives the Pulitzer gold medal: the winner, either a newspaper or a specific person, in the public service category of the journalism. The rest of the category winners receive a certificate and an accompanying US$10,000.00. Whoa!

This year's awards are given to achievements in last calendar year, having deadline of submission of entries last January 25, 2012. And the winners of this year's Pulitzer Prize are as follow:


Public Service: The Philadelphia Inquirer "for its exploration of pervasive violence in the city’s schools" and receiver of the 2012 Pulitzer Prize gold medal.

Breaking News Reporting: The Tuscaloosa (Alabama) News Staff "for its enterprising coverage of a deadly tornado" that rampaged Tuscaloosa and Birmingham last 2011.

Investigative Reporting: has two sets of winners, namely (1) Matt Apuzzo, Adam Goldman, Eileen Sullivan and Chris Hawley of the Associated Press "for their spotlighting of the New York Police Department’s clandestine spying program that monitored daily life in Muslim communities" and (2) Michael J. Berens and Ken Armstrong of The Seattle Times "for their investigation of how a little known governmental body in Washington State moved vulnerable patients from safer pain-control medication to methadone."

Explanatory Reporting: David Kocieniewski of The New York Times "for his lucid series that penetrated a legal thicket to explain how the nation’s wealthiest citizens and corporations often exploited loopholes and avoided taxes."

Local Reporting: Sara Ganim and members of The Patriot-News Staff, Harrisburg, Pennsylvania "for courageously revealing and adeptly covering the explosive Penn State sex scandal."

National Reporting: David Wood of The Huffington Post "for his riveting exploration of the physical and emotional challenges facing American soldiers severely wounded in Iraq and Afghanistan during a decade of war."

International Reporting: Jeffrey Gettleman of The New York Times "for his vivid reports, often at personal peril, on famine and conflict in East Africa."

Feature Writing: Eli Sanders of The Stranger, a Seattle weekly.

Commentary: Mary Schmich of The Chicago Tribune "for her wide range of down-to-earth columns that reflect the character and capture the culture of her famed city."

Criticism: Wesley Morris of The Boston Globe "for his smart, inventive film criticism."

Editorial Writing: No award was given in this category.

Editorial Cartooning: Matt Wuerker of POLITICO "for his consistently fresh, funny cartoons, especially memorable for lampooning the partisan conflict that engulfed Washington."

Breaking News Photography: Massoud Hossaini of Agence France-Presse "for his heartbreaking image of a girl crying in fear after a suicide bomber’s attack at a crowded shrine in Kabul."

Feature Photography: Craig F. Walker of The Denver Post "for his compassionate chronicle of an honorably discharged veteran, home from Iraq and struggling with a severe case of post-traumatic stress."

Letters and Drama

Fiction: No award was given in this category.

Drama: Water by the Spoonful by Quiara Alegría Hudes "an imaginative play about the search for meaning by a returning Iraq war veteran working in a sandwich shop in his hometown of Philadelphia."

History: Malcolm X: A Life of Reinvention by Manning Marable "an exploration of the legendary life and provocative views of one of the most significant African-Americans in U.S. history."

Biography or Autobiography: George F. Kennan: An American Life by John Lewis Gaddis "an engaging portrait of a globetrotting diplomat whose complicated life was interwoven with the Cold War and America’s emergence as the world’s dominant power."

Poetry: Life on Mars by Tracy K. Smith "a collection of bold, skillful poems, taking readers into the universe and moving them to an authentic mix of joy and pain."

General Non-Fiction: The Swerve: How the World Became Modern by Stephen Greenblatt "a provocative book arguing that an obscure work of philosophy, discovered nearly 600 years ago, changed the course of history by anticipating the science and sensibilities of today."


Pulitzer Prize for Music: Silent Night: Opera in Two Acts by Kevin Puts "a stirring opera that recounts the true story of a spontaneous cease-fire among Scottish, French and Germans during World War I."

I hope this list of winners inspire everyone to do better in their craft in the fields of newspaper, online journalism, musical composition and literature. May this serve as a beacon for them to aspire to become next year's winners of Pulitzer Prize, not only for the cash, but for the recognition and the feeling of having contributed to the society something significant.