There's a lot of pessimism about the future of both journalism and book publishing. We're not buying it. Which is why this week we are particularly pleased to unveil the publication of our first iBook, "In Search of Home." Traveling from the Caribbean to Asia and Africa, Pulitzer Center grantees Stephanie Hanes and Greg Constantine combine long-form storytelling with compelling photojournalism to document the plight of marginalized people who are denied one of the most basic human rights—the right to full citizenship in the place they call home. For the reader, it is an immersive, multi-media experience that brings fresh insight to a critical issue that affects millions.
"In Search of Home" is part of a broad Pulitzer Center initiative to find new platforms and new audiences for the journalism that our grantees produce. Earlier this year, in collaboration with Foreign Policy, we published an eBook version of Anna Badkhen's recent reportage called "Afghanistan by Donkey." Upcoming projects include three more eBooks in partnership with Foreign Policy, and others with Atavist and TedX. "In Search of Home" can be purchased via iTunes for $4.99. Thirty percent of the earnings go to Apple; the rest goes to the two journalists.
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"While the world focuses on the possibility of an Israeli attack on Iran, a little-noticed arms buildup has been taking place to Iran's north, among the ex-Soviet states bordering the Caspian," writes Pulitzer Center grantee Joshua Kucera in Foreign Policy.
The Caspian Sea used to be prized for its caviar. Now it's prized for its oil and natural gas reserves. And the newer countries along its shores—Azerbaijan, Kazakhstan and Turkmenistan—feel an understandable need to protect these riches from enemies real and imagined. "So they're building new navies from scratch, while the two bigger powers, Russia and Iran, are strengthening the navies they already have," Josh writes. "It all amounts to something that has never before been seen on the Caspian: an arms race." Not surprisingly, US defense contractors stand ready to help. And profit.
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"To Adopt A Child," a short film produced by Habiba Nosheen and Lisa Desai, was named a runner-up for a 2012 Casey Medals for Meritorious Journalism in the category of short form video. As part of the Pulitzer Center project "Nepal: Rebuilding Lives after Trafficking," the film follows the journey of American families who find themselves caught between two governments as they fight to bring their adopted children home from Nepal following the US State Department's decision to suspend adoptions of orphaned Nepalese children.
Until next week,