My book How UFOs Conquered the World: the history of a modern myth was shortlisted by The Folklore Society for the Katharine Briggs book award for folklore scholarship in 2015.
The judges described the book as ‘a lucid account based on 30+ years of archive research and fieldwork by an eminent researcher on the subject.
‘Clarke concludes that UFOs are a distinctively modern Western folk legend, culturally determined products of post-war fears and desires.
‘This is interwoven with the author’s own intellectual journey from teenage sci-fi enthusiast to critical investigator of the psychosocial process of myth-making.’
The award was won by my friend and fellow folklorist Professor Richard Jenkins for his excellent book Black Magic and Bogeymen: Fear, Rumour and Popular Belief in the North of Ireland 1972-74 (Cork University Press, 2015).
Other books shortlisted included Marina Warner, Once Upon a Time: A Short History of the Fairy Tale (OUP, 2014) and Stephen Banks, Informal Justice in England 1760-1914: The Courts of Popular Opinion (Boydell Press, 2014).
A paperback edition of How UFOs Conquered the World will be published by Aurum Press later in 2016.