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The Booker Prize 1972

The Booker Prize 1972

The Winner


By John Berger

Published by Weidenfield & Nicolson

John Berger relates the story of ‘G.’, a young man forging an energetic sexual career in Europe during the early years of the twentieth century. With profound compassion, Berger explores the hearts and minds of both men and women, and what happens during sex, to reveal the conditions of the Don Juan’s success: his essential loneliness, the quiet culmination in each of his sexual experiences of all of those that precede it, the tenderness that infuses even the briefest of his encounters, and the way women experience their own extraordinariness through their moments with him.

All of this Berger sets against the turbulent backdrop of Garibaldi and the failed revolution of Milanese workers in 1889, the Boer War, and the first flight across the Alps.

The Shortlist

The 1972 Judges

Cyril Connolly (Chair)

Elizabeth Bowen

Dr George Steiner