The Miguel de Cervantes Award for literature in the Castilian Spanish Language is the highest recognition granted to the creative work of Spanish and Latin American writers whose work has contributed to the notable enrichment of the literary heritage of the Spanish language.
The list of authors awarded the prize since its first edition in 1975 provides clear evidence of the significance of the Award for Spanish-speaking culture.
Any writer whose work is written wholly or mostly in Spanish may be proposed for this Award. Candidates may be presented by the Academies of the Spanish Language; authors who won previous editions; institutions whose nature, purposes or content are linked to literature in Castilian Spanish, and the members of the panels of judges.
In the 2008 edition the composition of the panel of judges followed a new model, with a higher proportion of members appointed by electoral bodies:
Since its creation the Award has been decided at the end of the year and presented on 23 April - the day of the death of Miguel de Cervantes - in the Hall of the University of Alcalá de Henares, birthplace of the writer, by their Majesties the King and Queen of Spain.