Julian Barnes: Ban Americans From Booker Prize

By Dianna Dilworth 

English author Julian Barnes thinks that Americans should not be considered for the Man Booker Prize.

The 2011 prize winner told Radio Times that he disagrees with the prize committee’s 2014 decision to expand the prize to writers of any nationality that were published in English in Britain.

“I don’t agree with opening up the Booker for the Americans,” he told the Radio Times. “I think that’s straightforwardly daft. The Americans have got enough prizes of their own. The idea of [the Booker] being Britain, Ireland, the old Commonwealth countries and new voices in English from around the world gave it a particular character and meant it could bring on writers. If you also include Americans – and get a couple of heavy hitters – then the unknown Canadian novelist hasn’t got a chance.”

American author Paul Beatty won the prize this year for his book The Sellout. He is the first American in the prize’s history to win the award.