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Brown University Book Award

2021-2022 Book Award


Dirty Work

What is the Brown University Book Award?


The Brown University Book Award is presented to an outstanding junior, at annual school book award presentations across the country.  It is awarded to a student who exhibits excellent verbal and written communication skills.


The program was started by the Brown Alumni Association in 1960, with 100 books being awarded, and continues to grow through the generosity of Brown alumni who sponsor individual awards. The administration of the Brown University Book Award is now managed by the Brown Bookstore. However, the award itself is most often sponsored by a Brown University alumnus, although sometimes the high school, or one of its faculty or staff, sponsors the award.


The goal of the Book Award program is twofold: to reward promising young scholars while promoting Brown University's name among high school and preparatory school students.


The award itself is a book written by a Brown University faculty member or alumnus, and is determined annually by committee.

This year the Brown University Book Award will be Dirty Work: Essential Jobs and the Hidden Toll of Inequality in America by Eyal Press, Class of '92.

Press, who graduated from Brown University in 1992 with a BA in history, is a journalist based in New York, and the recipient of the James Aronson Award for Social Justice Journalism.

Drone pilots who carry out targeted assassinations. Undocumented immigrants who man the “kill floors” of industrial slaughterhouses. Guards who patrol the wards of the United States’ most violent and abusive prisons. In Dirty Work, Eyal Press offers a paradigm-shifting view of the moral landscape of contemporary America through the stories of people who perform society’s most ethically troubling jobs.


The cost of the Brown University Book Award is $37.00, which includes shipping and handling.

Sample Bookplate:


Book Plate
Size: 5"W x 7"H

Past Book Award Selections:


  • 2021-2022 - Dirty Work: Essential Jobs and the Hidden Toll of Inequality in America by Eyal Press '92 - $37.00
  • 2020-2021 - The Alchemy of Us: How Humans and Matter Transformed One Another by Ainissa Ramirez '90 - $37.00
  • 2019-2020 - Proving Einstein Right: The Daring Expeditions that Changed How We Look at the Universe by S. James Gates, Jr. (Ford Foundation Professor of Physics) and Cathie Pelletier - $37.95
  • 2018-2019 - The Human Instinct: How We Evolved to Have Reason, Consciousness, and Free Will by Kenneth R. Miller '70 - $35.95
  • 2017-2018 - It's All Relative: Adventures Up and Down the World's Family Tree by A.J. Jacobs '90 - $35.95
  • 2016-2017 - Defying the Nazis by Artemis Joukowsky III - $35.00
  • 2015-2016 - Liberty's Torch by Elizabeth Mitchell '88 - $36.00
  • 2014-2015 - The Promise of a Pencil by Adam Braun '06 - $35.00
  • 2013-2014 - Bunker Hill: A City, A Siege, A Revolution by Nathaniel Philbrick '78 - $39.00
  • 2012-2013 - Thinking the Twentieth Century by Tony Judt with Timothy Snyder '91 - $40.00

Sponsors & Participating Schools

Sponsors choose the school(s) they would like to sponsor.  The school then must agree to present the Brown University Book Award at the their awards ceremony.  The sponsor may choose the degree of participation, while most just sponsor the book award and let the school handle the selection and presentation of the book award, others attend or even present the book award at the awards ceremony.  A select few even help with the selection of the recipient.

Participating Schools for 2018-19 Book Award

Order Sponsorship

Brown University Book Award Administrator
Contact: Trade Customer Service
Ph: 401-863-3168
Email:  [email protected]

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