Fahmida Azim, Anthony Del Col, Josh Adams and Walt Hickey of Insider have been awarded the Pulitzer Prize for “Illustrated Reporting and Commentary,” for their comic “How I escaped a Chinese internment camp.”
The write-up by the Pulitzer committee says the creators received the award for “using the comics medium to tell a powerful yet intimate story of the Chinese oppression of the Uyghurs, making the issue accessible to a wider public.” The prestigious award comes with a $15,000 prize.
Ann Telnaes of The Washington Post and Zoe Si, a contributor to The New Yorker, were both finalists in the category.
This is a more expansive category for the Pulitzer, which previously recognized editorial cartoons for about 100 years — but not last year — and the new category widens the net to include the growing field of comics journalism.
The winning comic tells the story of Zumrat Dawut, a Uyghur mother of three living in China. The Uyghur are a Turkic ethnic group that originated from and are culturally affiliated with the general region of Central and East Asia. China has been accused of committing crimes, including genocide, against the Uyghur population and other mostly-Muslim ethnic groups in the northwestern region of Xinjiang.
The comic tells Dawut’s story of being arrested and sent to a brutal detention area, and is based on interviews with and her testimony to the United Nations Human Rights Council.
Artist Josh Adams, the son of legendary artist Neal Adams, who passed away just a few weeks ago, shared on Twitter:
Comic fans will also recognize Del Col, who has written comics like Kill Shakespeare, Assassin’s Creed and The Death of Nancy Drew.