2022 Prize

2022 winner: Diego Garcia by Natasha Soobramanien and Luke Williams

Tim Parnell (Chair of Judges):
“By turns, funny, moving, and angry, Diego Garcia is as compelling to read as it is intricately wrought. For Natasha Soobramanien and Luke Williams collaboration is both method and politics.

"Against the dogmatism of the single-voiced fiction that informed the British government’s expulsion of the Chagossian people from their homeland, they respond not only with rigorous critique, but also with an understanding of the relationship between voice and power which shapes the very form of Diego Garcia. A marvellous book which extends the scope of the novel form.”

Ali Smith (Judge):
“An extraordinary achievement, this single novel composed by two writers is both a paean to connectivity and a profound study of the tragedy of human disconnect. At its core is an excoriation of a set of specific colonial foulnesses and injustices: the forced depopulation of the Chagos Islands and their expedient use by the UK and the US as a military base and bargaining chip.

"At its heart is an experiment with form that asks what fiction is, what art is for, and how, against the odds, to make visible, questionable and communal the structures, personal and political, of contemporary society, philosophy, lived history."

Read our news story about the winner.

The Judges

Tim Parnell (Chair)

Tim Parnell is Senior Lecturer in the Department of English and Creative Writing at Goldsmiths.

His publications include Constructing Christopher Marlowe (co-edited with J. A. Downie) and critical editions of Tristram Shandy and A Sentimental Journey. He has written widely on Laurence Sterne, Jonathan Swift, aspects of eighteenth-century culture and the broader traditions of the novel. He is currently completing Laurence Sterne: A Literary Life.

His teaching focuses on the eighteenth century and the history of the novel from Rabelais and Cervantes to the present day.

He is Literary Director of the Goldsmiths Prize which he conceived and set up in 2013.

Natasha Brown

Natasha Brown is a writer who lives in London. In 2019, she received a London Writers Award in the literary fiction category.

Her first novel, Assembly, was shortlisted for the Goldsmiths Prize 2021.

Tom Gatti

Tom Gatti is executive editor, books, culture, ideas and print at the New Statesman.

He joined the magazine in 2013 as culture editor; before that he was Saturday Review editor at The Times, where he also wrote book reviews, features and interviews.

He is the editor of Long Players: Writers on the Albums That Shaped Them(Bloomsbury). Tom first judged the Goldsmiths Prize in 2014, its second year.

Ali Smith

Ali Smith was born in Inverness in 1962 and lives in Cambridge.

Her fiction's been translated into more than 40 languages. Her latest novel is Companion piece, Hamish Hamilton 2022.