Professor Stansky receives Peter Davison Award

Professor Peter Stansky recently received the Peter Davison Award from The Orwell Society. This award recognizes outstanding contributions to the study of Orwell's life and work.

The Peter Davison Award

The Peter Davison Award is a recognition of outstanding ability and contribution to the study of George Orwell, his life and his work. It is awarded by the Orwell Society no more than once a year to a person (or, unusually, a group of persons) who has or have produced and published (using “publication” in a wide sense) work of intellectual value comparable to that of Professor Davison.


Professor Peter Davison (1926 – 2022) was an academic specialising in Renaissance studies, when he applied his transcription skills to the manuscript of George Orwell’s Nineteen Eighty-Four. This culminated in the publication of Nineteen Eighty-Four: The Facsimile Edition in 1984. Professor Davison was then retained to edit a proposed updating of the Collected Essays, Journalism and Letters of George Orwell, first published in 1968. Professor Davison divided his task into two: producing definitive editions of Orwell’s nine published books, and collecting his other writings. The consequence in 1998 was the Complete Works of George Orwell, in which the nine volumes were followed by eleven in which Orwell’s known and re-discovered writings were collected. Professor Davison did not stop there: finding more material, and organising the publication of The Lost Orwell in 2007: in effect, a twenty-first volume.


Professor Davison set a high standard in Orwell studies. The Orwell Society believes that just as Professor Davison found additional material, which shed a new lights on Orwell’s life, first in the Complete Works, then when he published The Lost Orwell, so scholars (whether in or out of the academic mainstream) can continue his work, and find and disseminate work of a similar significance. The judges will take into account the duration and persistence of the nominees in their work on Orwell studies.