The Denver Post won a Pulitzer Prize on Monday for its coverage of the movie theater massacre in Aurora, Colorado, while the New York Times captured four awards for reporting on a harrowing avalanche, the rise of a new aristocracy in China and the business practices of Apple and Wal-Mart.
The Associated Press received the award in breaking news photography for its coverage of the civil war in Syria.
In awards that reflected the rapidly changing media world, the online publication InsideClimate News won the Pulitzer for national reporting for stories on problems in the regulation of the nation’s oil pipelines.
The Sun Sentinel of Fort Lauderdale, Florida, received the public service award for an investigation of off-duty police officers’ reckless driving, and longtime Pulitzer powerhouses the Wall Street Journal and the Washington Post were recognized for commentary and criticism respectively.
The Star-Tribune of Minneapolis captured two awards, for local reporting and editorial cartooning.
The Pulitzers, US journalism’s highest honor, are given out each year by Columbia University on the recommendation of a board of journalists and others. Each award carries a US$10,000 prize, except for the public service award, which is a gold medal.
The New York Times’ David Barstow and Alejandra Xanic von Bertrab won the investigative reporting award for stories that detailed how Wal-Mart Stores systematically bribed Mexican officials with millions of dollars to obtain permission to build several stores across the country. The Times’ reporting spurred federal investigations.
The Times’ David Barboza received the international reporting award for his look at a how a “Red Nobility,” made up of relatives of top Chinese officials, has made fortunes in businesses closely tied to the government.
The Times staff won the explanatory reporting award for looking at the business practices of Apple Inc and other technology companies and illustrating “the darker side of a changing global economy for workers and consumers,” the judges said.
Meanwhile, Adam Johnson’s The Orphan Master’s Son, a labyrinthine story of a man’s travails in North Korea, has won the Pulitzer Prize for fiction, restoring a high literary honor a year after no fiction award was given.
Pulitzer judges on Monday praised Johnson’s book as “an exquisitely crafted novel that carries the reader on an adventuresome journey into the depths of totalitarian North Korea and into the most intimate spaces of the human heart.”
Johnson’s novel was one of three works with Asian themes to win Pulitzers.
Ayad Akhtar’s Disgraced, the story of a successful Pakistani-American lawyer whose dinner party goes out of control, won for drama and Fredrik Logevall’s Embers of War: The Fall of an Empire and the Making of America’s Vietnam, for history.