2012 PEN/Saul Bellow Award for Achievement in American Fiction
The PEN/Saul Bellow Award for Achievement in American Fiction goes to a distinguished living American author of fiction whose body of work in English possesses qualities of excellence, ambition, and scale of achievement over a sustained career which place him or her in the highest rank of American literature. The award carries a stipend of $25,000.
Don DeLillo, Jennifer Egan, and George Saunders
From the Judges’ Citation
It’s still here, isn’t it? The novel. The fictional prose narrative that draws the world in, that allows a writer to locate enormous historical forces within individual lives. The writer in this case is E. L. Doctorow. In settings that range from present day into the deep past, Doctorow’s work has examined and celebrated human voices in the sway of history. History the monotone, the monolithic force—and the pulsing, ever-living language that the writer poses in opposition. The clear pleasures of invention mark the novels and stories all the way from 1960 to the present moment. A sustained career. The established standard of the PEN/Saul Bellow Award refer to the scale of achievement over a sustained career which places the writer in the highest rank of American literature. Life achievement. In this case, the vision, skill, inventiveness and perseverance of E. L. Doctorow.”
Philip Roth, Cormac McCarthy, Don DeLillo