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Funder quits as judge for Horne Prize

Author Anna Funder has quit the judging panel for the Horne Prize, after a rule change about which judges were not consulted, reports the Australian.

Prize organisers made changes to the prize criteria saying they will not accept ‘writing that purports to represent the experiences of those in any minority community of which the writer is not a member’.

Funder said that the judging panel was not consulted in advance of the rule change. ‘I really disagreed with them, and I felt like a lot of my work would be disqualified, and I can’t really be judging a prize where my qualifications for doing so are ruled out of bounds,’ she said.

Saturday Paper editor Erik Jensen said he was trying to reduce the number of essays that were ‘chauvinistic or condescending accounts’ of particular groups.

Entries for the 2018 prize closed last week, and prize organisers are said to be redrafting guidelines and extending the prize’s deadlines.

Run by the Saturday Paper and cosmetics company Aesop, the Horne Prize for essay writing requires entrants to address ‘some part of the theme “Australian Life”’. Alongside Funder, the other judges for this year’s prize are David Marr, Marcia Langton and Suzanne Santos.



Category: Local news