Broken Nation wins 2015 Asher Award

Broken Nation wins 2015 Asher Award

13 December 2015

Internationally recognised historian and academic Professor Joan Beaumont has received another prestigious accolade, the 2015 Asher Award, for her book Broken Nation: Australians in the Great War.

Winner of the 2014 Prime Minister's Literary Award for Australian History and the 2014 NSW Premier’s Australian History Prize for her study of the First World War, Broken Nation combines deep scholarship and powerful storytelling, whilst bringing Australia’s participation in World War I to life.

Asher Award (ASA) judges praised Joan Beaumont’s Broken Nation: it “combines authority with a richly human approach – telling the story of Australian participation in and response to the Great War in prose that is measured but full of meaning and energy.”

“Beaumont’s ability to move between the intimacy of battle and grief and the grand historical narrative of Australian soldiers at war is masterful.”

“Bringing together the scale and ambition of this scholarship with the elegance, immediacy and emotional power of her writing is no small achievement but Beaumont makes it seem effortless,” they said.

David Horner, Professor of Australian Defence History based at the Australian National University, described Joan’s book as “a deeply researched, judicious and multi-faceted account of the war that became Australia's greatest tragedy - highly readable for a modern audience.”

Professor Beaumont’s book was released in 2013, ahead of the centenary of World War I. As our nostalgia for the ANZACS and the yearly trek to Gallipoli to honour them continues to grow, Broken Nation will inherently become a must read book that gives us an insight into battles, loss and grief that has forever impacted on this nation.

Joan Beaumont is Professor of History at the Strategic and Defence Studies Centre based at the Australian National University. She has published several books about World Wars I and II, and is internationally recognised as a historian of Australia in the two world wars, the history of prisoners of war and the memory and heritage of war.

Broken Nation is available through Allen & Unwin.  More information is available on the Asher Award Shortlist 2015 website.

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