The humanities analyse the multiple ways in which humans shape their world, and they are inspired by the possibility of making that world a richer, better, more interesting and meaningful one. Beneath simple labels like post-truth, alternative facts and fake news is a complex set of issues questioning our values.
For the 2017/18 Dean's Prize students were invited to explore post-truth, post-trust societies.
Truth or Trust: Is the real problem not so much that we live in post-truth societies, but post-trust ones?
The winner and runners-up for 2017/18 are:
Winner: Katarzyna Biela
Runners-up: Tom Ryan, Sandra Tse. James Yule
Name: Katarzyna Biela
Entry: Short Story
About Katarzyna: She studies English and American literature. For the last two years, she has been researching literature and B.S. Johnson – a writer who had a life-long preoccupation with the search for truth. Feeling immersed in the topic of post-truth and post trust, she decided to take part in the Dean’s Prize competition. During her studies in England, she has been collaborating with retired UEA professor, dr. George Hyde, who has introduced her to George Borrow, D.H. Lawrence and Max Sebald among others. Kasia is an artist looking for her creative voice. She complements reading and writing with making collages, discovering different colours of eyeshadows and having cream crackers with peanut butter.
Runners-up (in alphabetical order):
Name: Tom Ryan
About Tom: I'm currently studying English Literature with Creative Writing. What really intrigued me about this prompt is that it demands that you compare 'truth' and 'trust' and consider the differences between them. I figured that, as it can never be visibly objective, 'truth' is, or was, just collective trust. In my free time, I like reading, making music, and getting lost.
Name: Sandra Tse
Entry: Short Story
About Sandra: I’m a 2nd-year international student studying English Literature at UEA. I entered the competition because I am fascinated by how people trust one another, and I wanted to explore the ways language shapes perception and memory. In my spare time, I love travelling, learning new languages, and searching for the perfect iced tea.
Name: James Yule
About James: I am currently in my second year studying history, but at the minute I am on a semester abroad in Amsterdam! When I saw that the prize was about truth and trust, I knew that I wanted to try and write something which linked essay writing to the wider issues of trust in society. I'm now just hoping, on second thoughts, that not too many of my lecturers have read this... Geoff Plank I promise that my dissertation will be 100% truthful. Trust me.