20th century: The story behind the creation of the Pulitzer Prize

I remember that last semester Professor Titizan was constantly refereeing to the photographs and journalistic articles that had won a Pulitzer Prize. To be honest, I’ve heard about the Pulitzer Prize but I didn’t know much about it. So I decided to do a little research and find out everything about one of the most famous awards in journalism, literature and musical composition in the USA.


The Pulitzer Prize was established in 1917 and was named after Joseph Pulitzer (Hungarian-born American). The prize is presented by Columbia University, it has 21 categories and takes place annually.

 Joseph Pulitzer, one of the most famous journalists and publishers of his time, had an interesting life. Born in Hungary, he wanted to become a soldier but his eyesight was too bad and he was rebuffed from the army. Eventually, Pulitzer arrived in Boston where he started his career as a journalist just by an accident.

 Once, when he was in a library’s chess room, observing the game of two people, he started to criticize the players and their moves. The players, who were editors of a leading German language newspaper, started to talk to him and offered a job.

In 1917, Joseph Pulitzer decided to open a Journalism School in Columbia University and establish the Prize. He was a passionate journalist and a skillful newspaper publisher, and donated money to contribute to the development of journalism.

Nowadays, there are twenty-one awards:


Feature Writing (1979-present)

Public Service (1917-present)

Investigative Reporting (1985-present)

Explanatory Reporting (1998-present)

Local Reporting (1948-1952, 2007-present)

National Reporting (1948-present)

International Reporting (1948-present)

Breaking News Reporting (1998-present)

Commentary (1973-present)

Criticism (1973-present)

Editorial Writing (1917-present)

Editorial Cartooning (1922-present)

Breaking News Photography (2000-present)

Feature Photography (1968-present)

Letters, Drama & Music

Fiction (1948-present)

Drama (1917-present)

History (1917-present)

Biography or Autobiography (1917-present)

Poetry (1922-present)

General Nonfiction (1962-present)

Music (1943-present)

Special Citations

Special Awards and Citations (1930-present)

There are dozens of wonderful articles and photographs. I strongly recommend you all to go to the website and explore the treasures of the Pulitzer Prize.

Here is the link to the website click here




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