Lords of Finance: The Bankers Who Broke the World, by Liaquat Ahamed, has won the Council on Foreign Relations (CFR) ninth annual Arthur Ross Book Award for the best book published on international affairs. Ahamed will receive $15,000 and be honored at CFR on June 23.
"The ’Lords of Finance’ were the four central bankers whose mistaken remedies transformed a traditional recession into the Great Depression that set the stage for World War II. Vividly told, the story illuminates ominous parallels between the economic crises of the 1930s and the fiscal emergencies of today," said Foreign Affairs Editor James F. Hoge Jr., who chaired the selection committee.
The silver medal and a prize of $7,500 have been awarded to Seth G. Jones for In the Graveyard of Empires: America’s War in Afghanistan.
The jury also awarded an honorable mention and $2,500 to Gérard Prunier for Africa’s World War: Congo, the Rwandan Genocide, and the Making of a Continental Catastrophe.
Other shortlist nominees included Dan Reiter for How Wars End and Eugene Rogan for The Arabs: A History.
Previous winners have included Philip P. Pan’s Out of Mao’s Shadow: The Struggle for the Soul of a New China, Paul Collier’s The Bottom Billion: Why the Poorest Countries Are Failing and What Can Be Done About It, Kwame Anthony Appiah’s Cosmopolitanism: Ethics in a World of Strangers, and Tony Judt’s Postwar: A History of Europe Since 1945.
CFR’s Arthur Ross Book Award was endowed by Arthur Ross in 2001 to honor nonfiction works on international affairs, in English or translation, that merit special attention for bringing forth new information that changes the public’s understanding of events or problems, developing analytical approaches that allow new and different insights into critical issues, or providing new ideas that help resolve foreign policy problems.
ARTHUR ROSS BOOK AWARD JURY
Paul and Catherine Buttenwieser University Professor, Harvard University
James F. Hoge Jr. (Chairman)
Peter G. Peterson Chair and Editor, Foreign Affairs
Robert W. Kagan
Senior Associate, Carnegie Endowment for International Peace
Rohr Professor of Pacific International Relations, University of California, San Diego
Mary Elise Sarotte
Professor of International Relations, University of Southern California
Stephen M. Walt
Robert and Renée Belfer Professor of International Affairs, John F. Kennedy School of Government, Harvard University
The Council on Foreign Relations is an independent, nonpartisan membership organization, think tank, and publisher dedicated to being a resource for its members, government officials, business executives, journalists, educators and students, civic and religious leaders, and other interested citizens in order to help them better understand the world and the foreign policy choices facing the United States and other countries.