The Political Studies Association’s ‘Innovation in Teaching Award’ for 2011has been awarded to the course on ‘Political Biography’ that Professor Alex Danchev teaches with Honorary Professor Ion Trewin at the University of Nottingham. With Ion as the current Literary Director of the Man Booker Prize and a former Editor-in-Chief of Weidenfeld and Nicolson, this partnership of academia and publishing is of course exactly what the research network is seeking to promote.
‘Political Biography’ is a course that embraces long as well as short forms (obituaries, Dictionary of National Biography entries), ranging from memoirs, through diaries, to official or unauthorised lives of the great and good. Alex and Ion’s teaching has been highlighted in the national and educational press as a wholly new approach to teaching Politics, witness the creative writing element – a forward obituary of Tony Blair. The course first attracted attention two years ago when Alex and Ion received a Dearing Award for Learning and Teaching.
Alex and Ion will receive their award at the PSA’s annual prize-giving in Church House, Westminster, on 29 November – a televised occasion, with Jon Snow as compere.