In addition to offering financial assistance, the grants also help focus attention on repression and censorship around the globe.
Nominations for 2009 grants are requested by 8 December 2008 and awards are given the following spring. Decisions are made by a selection committee composed of writers and editors who have a long-standing interest in free expression.
Nominations arising from emergency situations are accepted at any time.
Since the programme began in 1989, nearly 600 writers from 91 countries have received Hellman/Hammett grants, in amounts of US$500 to S$10,000.
Group grants have also been given to writers in Bosnia, Burma, Peru and
The grants are made possible by the estate of American playwright Lillian Hellman with funds set up in her name and that of her long-time companion, the novelist Dashiell Hammett. Both Hellman and Hammett were interrogated about their political beliefs and affiliations before Congressional Committee during the anti-communist hysteria of the 1950s.
People interested in making a nomination should contact Marcia Allina at:
allinam (@) hrw.org for a nomination form and further information.