Toby Green wins the Nayef Al-Rodhan Prize for Global Cultural Understanding

Toby Green

Toby Green, laureate of the Nayef Al-Rodhan Prize for Global Cultural Understanding


A Fistful Of Shells: West Africa From The Rise Of The Slave Trade To The Age Of Revolution’, by Toby Green, has been awarded the Nayef Al-Rodhan Prize for Global Cultural Understanding.

Fistful-of-ShellsThis account of West African cultural achievements prior to European intervention has been hailed for highlighting an often-overlooked continent and culture, and prize judges have deemed it history Westerners “ought to” know.

The book has been awarded the £25,000 Nayef Al-Rodhan Prize, which is given annually for non-fiction which promotes global cultural understanding. The announcement of the recipient of the prize for 2019 was made at a ceremony at the British Academy in London on Wednesday 30th October.

The Nayef Al-Rodhan Prize was established in 2013 to reward and celebrate works of non-fiction that have contributed to global cultural understanding, and illuminated the interconnections and divisions that shape cultural identity worldwide.

Speaking on behalf of the jury Professor Ash Amin said:

A Fistful Of Shells is a treasure trove of a book. Truly ground-breaking, it draws on years of work to tell another story of pre-colonial West Africa, a continually ignored continent. It changed the way in which the jury thought about Africa and helped us to better understand not just Africa but the way in which the world is changing right now. Finally, a detailed history that few westerners know but all ought to. Quite simply, an eye-opener.”


Rodhan 2Professor Nayef Al-Rodhan is a Philosopher, Neuroscientist and Geostrategic. He is Head of the Geneva Centre for Security Policy’s Geopolitics and Global Futures Programme and Honorary Fellow of St Antony’s College at the University of Oxford, United Kingdom.

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