Earlier this week, Monique Truong (CRF 2013, Juror) was honored with the 2021 John Dos Passos Prize for Literature, the oldest literary award granted by a university or college in Virginia. The prize, now in its 40th year, seeks to recognize the country’s most talented but under-appreciated writers.

Brandon Haffner, assistant professor of English and Dos Passos Prize committee chair, said: “Her writing challenges me in the way all truly transformative art does; it demands my focus and offers in return rich, layered worlds I will never forget.”

Kirsten Kaschock, one of the prize jurors, said: “Truong’s work rewards slow reading… Her plots do not surge, they unfold—and the characters within them slowly take shape, accruing character from multiple gestures and observations rather than reactivity. In her books, I felt entrusted with lives lived. The unsaid and the unknown make their presences felt alongside her meticulously researched world construction, and the result is a richness that can’t be spoken of only by addressing what Truong does.”

Read more about the prize here.

Photo by Haruka Sakaguchi.