With millions of books published every year all over the world, how can we possibly choose good ones from among the sea of books? Different book awards that occur every year (picture book awards, children’s literature awards, literature awards, etc.) can give us a lot of reference and guidance. Thus, the Learning Resource Center (LRC) has prepared the “Overview of World Book Awards Series” in order to broaden students’ reading horizons and provide book selection perspectives.
This issue mainly introduces award recipients from the major Asian picture book awards and children’s literature awards. Some of the award-winning books are being displayed in the 1st floor LRC, and students are most welcome to come and borrow them!
一、Picture Book Awards：
1.Hsin Yi Picture Book Award (China)
With the belief of ‘protecting children’s only childhood’, in August 2009, the Taiwan Hsin Yi Foundation invited 19 senior experts from the field of early childhood education, children’s literature and children’s reading promotion to jointly establish the Hsin Yi Picture Book Award, to encourage the creation of original picture books.
The Hsin Yi Picture Book Award aims to let more children see original works born from their own culture, learn from real life experience without barriers, grow up in their own language and culture, and become a person with confidence and identification with their own culture. The award adheres to the child-oriented principle, and continues to launch high-quality picture books such as Running Town, Grapes, Reasons for Being Late, Cotton Granny Can’t Sleep and so on.
- 2.Bronze Sunflower Picture Book Award (China)
The Bronze Sunflower Picture Book Award is held every two years, and the Bronze Sunflower Children’s Novel Award is held every other year. These awards are dedicated to rewarding China’s outstanding original picture books.
The Bronze Sunflower Picture Book Award aims to discover outstanding original authors, encourage original and innovative works, be the leader for original works of Chinese children’s literature, focus on discovering Chinese stories, cultivate local writers, establish roots in excellent national culture, strive to select works that carry the beautiful, common emotions in all mankind, and emphasize unique Chinese characteristics.
- Sankei Children’s Publishing Culture Award (Japan)
In Asia, Japan is a large producer of picture books and has a mature history of picture book development. It can be said that Japan is one of the more influential countries with regards to the introduction of the concept of picture books to China and the widening of the horizons of Chinese readers, and many world-famous picture book authors and a large number of excellent works have come from that nation. Many people may not know that picture books originated from the Japanese concept of “ehon”, which means the combination of drawing and text.
The Sankei Children’s Publishing Culture Award aims to give quality children’s books to the next generation and is an evergreen tree in the picture book award category. Itsumi Taro’s works, much loved by children, is one of many writers who have won the Sankei Children’s Publishing Culture Prize.
Itsumi Taro believes that picture books should leave children room for a lot of imagination, rather than giving them fun. Unlike many picture book writers, Itsumi Taro especially does not like to associate his picture books with education, and he has always felt that picture books exist to make children feel happy.
In addition to the above-mentioned picture book awards, there are also the Feng Zikai Chinese Children’s Picture Book Award, the Japan Picture Book Award, the MOE Picture Book House Award (Japan), and the Kodansha Picture Book Award (Japan), all of which are highly respected picture book awards.
Children’s Literature Awards
- Bingxin Award
Founded in 1990, the Bingxin Award is known for its strictness, fairness and authority, and is the only international Chinese children’s literature award in China. The award is divided into five sub-awards: the Bingxin Children’s Book Award, Bingxin Children’s Literature New Work Award, Bingxin Art Award, Bingxin Composition Award, and Bingxin Photography Literature Award.
The Bingxin Children’s Literature New Work Award includes categories like novels, essays, fairy tales, and children’s literature. Together with the Chen Bochui Children’s Literature Award and the National Children’s Literature Award, it constitutes the three major domestic children’s literature awards. The New Work Award and the Grand Prize (the highest award) together form the Bingxin Children’s Literature New Work Award. Generally, only one Grand Prize work is selected in each category.
In the early days of its establishment, when Ms. Bingxin was still healthy, she would review the award-winning works each time. Since its establishment, an award ceremony for the Bingxin Award has been held every year, before or after Ms. Bingxin’s birthday.
- Chen Bochui International Children’s Literature Award
Mr. Chen Bochui, a children’s literature writer, translator and educator, donated 55,000 yuan in 1981 to establish the “Shanghai Children’s Literature Gardener Award”, which was later renamed the “Chen Bochui Children’s Literature Award”. The award officially changed its name to the “Chen Bochui International Children’s Literature Award” in 2014, echoing the “Hans Christian Andersen International Children’s Literature Award” in Bologna.
The award aims to carry out the concept of ‘writing big literature for children’ advocated by Mr. Chen Bochui, and to reward professional institutions and relevant people from all over the world who have made outstanding achievements in the field of children’s literature and children’s picture books according to international standards. It provides awards for two different types of literature – the Best Words Award and the Best Picture Book Award. At the same time, the Writer of the Year Award and the Special Contribution Award were established to cite authors for their outstanding contributions to children’s literature.
In addition to the above visible awards, there is also an invisible award – the ‘Children’s Choice Award’. For any book that can be borrowed, turned to rags, and passed on by words to others is its greatest affirmation, and this is therefore the best award it can receive. The LRC welcomes students to come to read and discuss books, and share the joy of reading!