Pulitzer Prize: List of Pulitzer Prize Winners

By : Neha Dhyani

Updated : Mar 2, 2023, 17:00

The Pulitzer Prize was first awarded by Columbia University in the United States in 1917 for excellence in newspaper journalism, literary achievements, and musical compositions. Pulitzer prize winners are awarded under 21 categories within the United States. Each winner in twenty categories is awarded a certificate along with a cash award amount of $ 15,000. However, the 21st category is for Public Service, and the winner for that is awarded a gold medal.

When scanning the Pulitzer Prize Winners List, the New York Times has been awarded the maximum number of 132 awards in various categories. This organization has a record of winning the maximum number of Pulitzer Prizes over any other organization, and the first one came its way in 1918.

Pulitzer Prize Winners in India

The first Indian to win Pulitzer Prize was Gobind Behari Lal, a part of the Indian freedom struggle. He moved to the United States in 1912 as a research fellow at the University of California. He won the Pulitzer Prize in the year 1937, along with four others, for their coverage, in the reporting category, in the field of science.

The five Indian Pulitzer Prize winners so far are:

  • Gobind Behari Lal in 1937.
  • Jhumpa Lahiri in 2000.
  • Geeta Anand in 2003.
  • Siddhartha Mukherjee in 2011.
  • Vijay Seshadri in 2014.

An American journalist of Indian descent to win the Pulitzer Prize in the year 2021 was Megha Rajagopalan. Along with her two contributors, she won the prestigious Pulitzer Prize in the category of innovative investigative reports. In this report, Rajagopalan exposed the mass detention camps for Uyghur Muslims in Xinjiang province, secretly built by China.

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Danish Siddiqui was another photojournalist of Indian descent to receive the Pulitzer Prize in the year 2018 for Feature Photography, as part of the Reuters team, for documenting the Rohingya refugee crisis.

The Pulitzer Prize was established in the year 1917 as per the provisions in the will of Joseph Pulitzer, who was a passionate crusader against the then dishonest government. Initially, this award recognized exceptional contribution in journalism alone. Still, over the years, the plan of the awards has been revised, and it now extends to 21 categories, including music, poetry, photography, and journalism.

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FAQs about Pulitzer Prize

How does an individual win the Pulitzer Prize?

Entries for the Pulitzer Prize can be made by any individual based on material coming from a United States newspaper, magazine or news site that has regular publication during the calendar year.

Who was the first Indian to win a Pulitzer Prize in literature?

The first Indian to win a Pulitzer Prize in literature is Gobind Behari Lal.

How many categories are there in the Pulitzer Prize?

There are a total of 21 categories in which the Pulitzer Prize is awarded. For 20 categories, the award comprises a certificate and a $15,000 cash prize. For the 21st category, for public service, the winner is awarded a gold medal.

What was the first Pulitzer Prize Winner Awarded with?

The first Pulitzer Prize winner was a French Ambassador named Jean Jules Jusserand, who had written the best book about American history. He was awarded $2,000.