Journalist Rachel Giese wins $25,000 Writers’ Trust of Canada award for book on masculinity

Journalist Rachel Giese wins $25,000 Writers’ Trust of Canada award for book on masculinity
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Toronto journalist Rachel Giese has won the Writers’ Trust of Canada’s Shaughnessy Cohen Prize for Political Writing, and the $25,000 prize that comes with it.

The Writers’ Trust of Canada, a charity organization that supports Canadian writers through awards, fellowships and grants, announced Giese’s win on May 15 at their annual Politics and the Pen gala in Ottawa.

Giese, Daily Xtra’s director of editorial, received the prize for her book Boys: What It Means to Become a Man, an examination of how negative perceptions of masculinity — like aggression, lack of emotion and competitiveness — can affect how young boys grow up and emotionally develop.

In their citation justifying their pick, the jury — health columnist André Picard, journalist Angela Sterritt and author Chris Turner — praised Giese’s extensive reporting.

“With a skillful mix of original reporting, scholarly research, and personal anecdotes, Rachel Giese presents a deeply felt examination of the forces that shape how boys see themselves and how we see them,” they said.

Journalist Tanya Talaga won the prize last year for her book Seven Fallen Feathers, on the deaths of seven Indigenous students in Thunder Bay.

Four other finalists for the award — Abu Bakr al Rabeeah, Sarah Cox, Jacques Poitras and Harley Rustad — received prizes of $2,500 each.

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