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June 27, 2021

Statement on Pulitzer Prize for Cartooning 2021

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Statement decrying the non-awarding of the Pulitzer Prize for Cartooning.

To the Pulitzer Board.

I write as President, and on behalf, of the Australian Cartoonists Association, to express solidarity with our American editorial cartoonist colleagues, and to express our disappointment in the decision by the Pulitzer Prize Board not to award a prize for cartooning this year.

I note that the last year has been epic in the colliding of catastrophes, upheavals and conflicts both natural and man-made, and cartoonists, in spite of their precarious employment and challenging circumstances, have risen mightily to capture the moment(s).

In an era when the sharp line and elucidating perspective of cartoonists is more vital than ever to counter forces of obscurity and suppression of truth, we can ill afford to placate the powers for whom our silence and invisibility would be convenient. Cartoonists are necessary for a healthy democracy. Dictators hate us!

We could understand, having seen the work of contenders, that it may have been difficult for you to choose one over another. Could they have shared the prize? However, to not award a cartoonist this year suggests not an embarrassment of riches, but that no cartoonist was good enough.

And we think that is far from the truth.

Yours sincerely,

Cathy Wilcox President Australian Cartoonists Association president@cartoonists.org.au

27 June, 2021