Dahlen selected as judge for National Book Awards

Sarah Park Dahlen
Sarah Park Dahlen, Associate Professor

Associate Professor Sarah Park Dahlen has been selected by the National Book Foundation to serve as a judge for the 74th National Book Awards. The foundation chose 25 judges for this year's awards, which are given in the categories of fiction, nonfiction, poetry, translated literature, and young people’s literature.

"The judging panels for the National Book Awards are comprised of 25 literary community members deeply committed to celebrating the very best literature. We are so grateful to this group of voracious readers—who are about to embark on the reading journey of a lifetime," said Ruth Dickey, executive director of the National Book Foundation. "Their dedication to the written word will have a lasting impact on writers, readers, and the global literary landscape in 2023 and beyond."

This year's judges include writers, editors, booksellers, academics, critics, directors of educational research centers, and translators from across the country. Panelists include a National Book Award winner, finalists, and longlisted authors; a Pulitzer Prize winner; a Singapore Literature Prize winner; a Lambda Literary LGBTQ Nonfiction Award winner; a National Translation Award in Poetry winner; an Andrew Carnegie Medal for Excellence in Nonfiction winner; a Los Angeles Times Book Prize winner; a Coretta Scott King-Virginia Hamilton Award for Lifetime Achievement recipient; and fellowship recipients from the Guggenheim Foundation, Lannan Foundation, and National Endowment for the Arts.

Dahlen will serve on the Young People's Literature panel with Claudette S. McLinn, executive director of the Center for the Study of Multicultural Children's Literature, and authors Kyle Lukoff, justin a. reynolds, and Sabaa Tahir.

"I am honored and humbled to serve alongside such amazing people for this important award," Dahlen said. "I've assigned many National Book Award winners in my classes, and to have the responsibility of helping to choose yet another winner is a dream come true."

Dahlen's research addresses transracially adopted Koreans in youth literature, Asian American youth literature, and diversity in children's literature and library education. She is cofounder of the open access journal Research on Diversity in Youth Literature, with Sonia Alejandra Rodríguez. Dahlen received her PhD in library and information science from the iSchool at Illinois.

The judges for the 2023 National Book Awards will select 50 longlist titles, 10 per category, which will be announced mid-September, and 25 finalists, to be announced on October 3. Winners in all five categories will be announced at the 74th National Book Awards on November 15, 2023.