German Non-Fiction Prize goes to Jürgen Kaube | Books | DW

The period in which Georg Wilhelm Friedrich Hegel (1770-1831) lived and explored the world is now considered to be a transitional period between aristocracy and modernity. A time of change and constant change at all levels of society. Nevertheless, Hegel is “a character who is somehow distant,” said Jürgen Kaube, co-editor of the “FAZ”, on Monday (June 14, 2021) in the Humboldt Forum in Berlin, where his book “Hegel’s World” was published for the first time awarded German Non-Fiction Prize.

Awarded: “Hegel’s World”

In his book, Kaube uses a portrait of the German philosopher Hegel to describe Europe’s dawn of modernity – accompanied by all the doubts that went with it. The jury found that Kaube presented the contradictions around 1800 elegantly and humorously. The book spans the present, because back then it was also about getting involved in a changing world.

Handed down by others

Many of Hegel’s writings were never published by him and were only handed down because his students had copied them, said Kaube. He receives prize money of 25,000 euros, the other seven nominated authors each receive 2,500 euros of the award, which is endowed with a total of 42,500 euros.

Georg Wilhelm Friedrich Hegel

Doubter and philosopher: Georg Wilhelm Friedrich Hegel

The Association of the German Book Trade created the German Non-Fiction Book Prize in order to pay more attention to open discourse in a time of fake news, hate speech and widespread anti-science, said the head of the Association, Karin Schmidt-Friderichs, at the ceremony. “We need that award right now.”

From a total of 220 submissions from 135 publishers, the jury nominated eight works for the non-fiction prize. The six-strong jury for the German Non-Fiction Prize 2021 included the Chemnitz bookseller Klaus Kowalke, the science journalist Jeanne Rubner, the literary critic Denis Scheck, the author Hilal Sezgin, the history professor Barbara Stollberg-Rilinger, the cultural journalist Kia Vahland and the Berlin literary editor Tania Martini.