April 15, 1999
Vol. 18 No. 14

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    Rosen, Professor Emeritus in Music, wins 1999 Capote Award

    By Theresa Carson
    News Office

    Charles Rosen, Professor Emeritus in Music and the Committee on Social Thought, will receive the 1999 Truman Capote Award for Literary Criticism in Memory of Newton Arvin.

    Rosen, an internationally renowned pianist and musicologist, will be given the $50,000 prize today for his work Romantic Poets, Critics, and Other Madmen.

    Reed Woodhouse of the Boston Book Review wrote, “It is the work of a worthy successor to the many figures of genius he so sympathetically honors in this book.”

    The prize, which is administered by the University of Iowa Writers’ Workshop, is the world’s largest annual cash prize for literary criticism. Some of Rosen’s other literary works include The Romantic Generation (1995), The Classical Style: Haydn, Mozart, Beethoven (1971) and Sonata Forms (1980). The Classical Style won the National Book Award in 1972, and Sonata Forms was nominated for a Pulitzer Prize.

    Romantic Poets, Critics, and Other Madmen was chosen by an international panel of prominent writers and critics, including Anthony Appiah, J.M. Coetzee, Stephen Greenblatt, Richard Poirier, Peter Sacks and Michael Wood. After selection, the panelists’ choice is reviewed and confirmed by the award’s administrative committee, which consists of Frank Conroy, director of the UI Writers’ Workshop; Jorie Graham, winner of the 1996 Pulitzer Prize in poetry; and William Gass, head of the International Writing Center at Washington University in St. Louis.

    Known for his interpretations of Romantic composers, Rosen has performed for audiences around the world. He has recorded with the Vanguard, Odyssey, Nonesuch, Columbia Masterworks, Music and Art, and Globe labels. Rosen, who retired in 1996, taught at Chicago for 11 years.

    The award presentation will take place at the Old Capitol on the University of Iowa campus in Iowa City, Iowa.

    The award, which is designed to encourage and reward excellence in the field of literary criticism, was established in 1994 by the Capote estate and was named in honor of Newton Arvin, a critic whom Capote admired.