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AAS Book Prize Competitions,
Awards & Citations

View recipients of the Association for Asian Studies' highest honor:

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Below is a list of the book prizes administered by the four AAS regional councils.

Submission procedures vary each year, and are posted each spring (APRIL/MAY) after the councils meet at the AAS Annual Conference.

Prizes are awarded for:

  • Pre-1900 English-language, non-fiction scholarly books on CHINA (LEVENSON)
  • Post-1900 English-language, non-fiction scholarly books on CHINA (LEVENSON)
  • English-language scholarly books published on INNER ASIA (SMITH)
  • TRANSLATIONS from CHINESE OR INNER ASIAN languages into English (HANAN)
  • English-language scholarly books published on JAPAN (HALL)
  • English-language scholarly books published on KOREA (PALAIS)
  • A first book on SOUTH ASIA (COHN)
  • English-language scholarly works on SOUTH ASIAN Studies (COOMARASWAMY)
  • TRANSLATIONS from SOUTH ASIAN languages into English (RAMANUJAN)
  • English-language scholarly, non-fiction works on SOUTHEAST ASIAN Studies (BENDA)
  • Distinguished scholarly works on SOUTHEAST ASIA (KAHIN)
  • TRANSLATIONS from SOUTHEAST ASIAN languages into English (BECKER)
  • Educators who develop CURRICULUM MATERIALS dealing exclusively with one or more of the countries and cultures represented by the AAS (BUCHANAN)

 

AAS CIAC LEVENSON PRIZES FOR BOOKS IN CHINESE STUDIES

The AAS China and Inner Asia Council will offer two $1,000 Joseph Levenson Prizes for nonfiction scholarly books on China published in 2014.

The Merlin Foundation, established by the late Audrey Sheldon, has provided for the two awards, one for works whose main focus is on China before 1900 and the other for works on post-1900 China. The prizes will be awarded to the English-language books that make the greatest contribution to increasing understanding of the history, culture, society, politics, or economy of China. Works in all disciplines and in all periods of Chinese history are eligible, but anthologies, edited works, and pamphlets will not be considered. In keeping with the broad scholarly interests of Joseph Levenson, special consideration will be given to books that, through comparative insights or groundbreaking research, promote the relevance of scholarship on China to the wider world of intellectual discourse. To be eligible, books must have a 2014 copyright date. A copy of each entry, clearly labeled "Joseph Levenson Prize" must be sent to each member of the appropriate committee by June 30, 2015. Either presses or individuals may submit books, and it is suggested that authors consult with their presses concerning submission. The prizes will be presented at the AAS annual conference next year. Eligible authors should be aware that since many publishers do not automatically submit nominations, authors must assume responsibility for having their books be placed in nomination and sent to members of the prize committee.

Pre-1900 Committee:

  • Robert Hegel (Chair), EALC, Washington University, Busch Hall Room 115, Campus Box 1111, One Brookings Drive, St. Louis, MO 63130-4899
  • Li Xiaorong, Dept. of E. Asian Languages & Cultural Studies, University of California, Santa Barbara, CA 93106-7075
  • Patricia Berger, Dept. of History of Art, 416 Doe Library, University of California, Berkeley, CA 94720-6020

Post-1900 Committee:

  • Yomi Braester (Chair), 4219 Baker Ave NW, Seattle, WA 98107
  • John Fitzgerald, Director Asia-Pacific Centre for Social Investment and Philanthropy, Faculty of Business and Enterprise, Swinburne University of Technology, PO Box 218, Mail H25, John Street, Hawthorn VIC 3122 AUSTRALIA
  • Mei Zhan, Dept. of Anthropology, 3316 Social & Behavioral Gateway, University of California, Irvine, CA 92697-5100

 

AAS CIAC E. GENE SMITH BOOK PRIZE (Inner Asia)

The E. Gene Smith Inner Asia Book Prize, to be offered annually, honors outstanding and innovative scholarship across discipline and country of specialization for a book on Inner Asia published during the preceding year.

The Prize, named to honor the distinguished scholar of Tibet, Mongolia, and other areas of Inner Asia, E. Gene Smith, carries with it a $1,000 award for the author. Books nominated may address either contemporary or historical topics in any field of the humanities or the social sciences related to any of the countries and regions in the wide swath of Asia stretching from the eastern border of Afghanistan to Mongolia, i.e., Tibet, Xinjiang or Mongolia, including peoples coming recently from those areas.

To be eligible, books must have a 2014 copyright date. A copy of each entry, clearly labeled "Gene Smith Prize" must be sent to each member of the committee by June 30, 2015. Either presses or individuals may submit books, and it is suggested that authors consult with their presses concerning submission. The prize will be awarded at the AAS Annual Conference in 2016. Eligible authors should be aware that since many publishers do not automatically submit nominations, authors must assume responsibility for having their books be placed in nomination and sent to each member of the prize committee.

Smith Prize Committee:

  • Morris Rossabi (Chair), 175 Riverside Drive, New York, New York 10024
  • Robert Barnett, Weatherhead E. Asian Institute, Columbia University, 9th Floor Int'l Affairs Bldg., 420 W. 118th St., Mail Code 3333, New York, NY 10027
  • Leonard W.J. van der Kuijp, South Asian Studies, Harvard University, 1 Bow Street, Cambridge, MA 02138

 

PATRICK D. HANAN BOOK PRIZE FOR TRANSLATION
(China and Inner Asia)

The Patrick D. Hanan Book Prize for Translation (China and Inner Asia) is given biennially to an outstanding English translation of a significant work in any genre originally written in Chinese or an Inner Asian Language, from any time period.

The prize was established in 2015 and will accept for its inaugural prize nominations with copyright dates spanning the period 2013-2014. Nominations for the prize are being solicited for presentation at the 2016 AAS annual conference in Seattle. Subsequent prizes will consider nominations of works with publication dates from the previous two years. There are no citizenship or residence requirements for nominees. Translators need not be AAS members to be considered. The winner of the prize will receive $1,000 and be honored at the AAS annual conference.

Nominations may be made by trade book publishers, university presses, or any member of the Association for Asian Studies. Self-nomination is not allowed.

Please send a hard copy of the nominated book (hardcover or paperback) to each member of the review committee at the addresses posted below. If the book is published in electronic format only, please send the PDF file and a link to the published text. The nomination should be accompanied by a short description of the translated work addressing its significance, especially the specific literary, linguistic, historical, or other qualities that the prize committee should consider in reviewing the text (200 words maximum).

Deadline for nominations is September 30, 2015. Please send nominations and inquiries to:

Hanan Prize Committee:

  • Grace Fong (Chair), Dept. of E. Asian Studies, McGill University, 688 rue Sherbrooke Ouest, Suite 425, Montreal, QC CANADA H3A 3R1
  • Ellen Widmer Dept. of E. Asian Languages & Cultures, Green Hall, Wellesley College, 106 Central Street, Wellesley, MA 02481
  • Andrew F. Jones, Dept. of E. Asian Languages & Cultures, 3413 Dwinelle Hall, University of California, Berkeley, CA 94720-2230

 

AAS NEAC JOHN WHITNEY HALL BOOK PRIZE (Japan)

The Northeast Asia Council of the Association for Asian Studies announces the competition for the 23rd annual John Whitney Hall Book Prize to be awarded in 2016 for an outstanding English language book published on Japan during 2014.

The Prize, named to honor the distinguished scholar, John Whitney Hall, carries with it a $1,000 award for the author. Books nominated for the Prize in this competition must bear a 2014 copyright date. Books nominated may address either contemporary or historical topics in any field of the humanities or the social sciences. Translations from Japanese into English are eligible only if they include a substantial introduction, annotation, and critical apparatus. Reference works, exhibition catalogs, multi-authored collections of essays, textbooks, original poetry or fiction, memoirs, or autobiographies are not eligible. Authors need not be members of the AAS. Nominations must be made by publishers (trade publishers or university presses). Nominations are not accepted from authors. Publishers are allowed to submit no more than two nominations and must notify the Prize Committee Chair in writing of their intent to submit by June 30, 2015. Presses must also send one copy of each work nominated, clearly labeled "John Whitney Hall Prize Nomination" to each of the Prize Committee members by JUNE 30, 2015.

Hall Prize Committee:

  • Laura Miller (Chair), 15674 Ferncreek Drive, Chesterfield, MO 63017
  • Yukio Lippit, 127 Huron Ave, Cambridge, MA 02138
  • Amy Stanley, Dept. of History, Northwestern University, 1881 Sheridan Rd., Evanston, IL 60208

This year's John Whitney Hall Book Prize will be presented at the 2016 AAS Annual Conference in Seattle.

 


 

AAS NEAC JAMES B. PALAIS BOOK PRIZE (Korea)

The James B. Palais Prize of the Association for Asian Studies is given annually to an outstanding scholar of Korean studies from any discipline or country specialization to recognize distinguished scholarly work on Korea.

There are no citizenship or residence requirements for nominees. The award was initiated by the Palais Prize committee headed by AAS President Robert Buswell, 2008-09, and includes a cash award of $1,000.

The Palais Prize Committee, appointed by the Northeast Asia Council of the Association, seeks and receives nominations from which to select the annual recipient. Nominations for the prize may be made by trade book publishers, university presses, or any member of the Association for Asian Studies. Self-nomination is not allowed. Authors need not be AAS members. Any original, scholarly, nonfiction works with a copyright date of 2013 or 2014 are eligible, but reference works, exhibition catalogs, translations, textbooks, collections of previously published essays, poetry, fiction, travel books, memoirs or autobiographies are not eligible.

Nominators must send one copy of a nominated work to each member of the review committee listed below. Copies must be received by the committee members no later than August 1, 2015. Each entry should be submitted in an envelope clearly labeled "Palais Prize" or have a letter of nomination enclosed.

Palais Prize Committee:

  • Theodore Hughes (Chair), Dept. of EALAC, 407 Kent Hall, Columbia University, New York, NY 10027
  • Hwansoo Kim, 118 Gray Building, Duke Dept. of Religious Studies, Durham, NC 27708
  • Suzy Kim, Dept. of Asian Languages & Cultures, 330 Scott Hall, Rutgers University, 43 College Ave., New Brunswick, NJ 08901-1164

The prize will be presented at the annual AAS conference the following spring.


 

AAS SAC BERNARD S. COHN BOOK PRIZE (South Asia)

The Bernard S. Cohn Book Prize honors outstanding and innovative scholarship across discipline and country of specialization for a first single-authored monograph on South Asia, published during the preceding year.

The Prize, named to honor the distinguished scholar, Bernard S. Cohn, carries with it a $1,000 award for the author. Books nominated may address either contemporary or historical topics in any field of the humanities or the social sciences related to any of the countries of South Asia: India, Pakistan, Bangladesh, Afghanistan, Sri Lanka, and Nepal in the spirit of Barney Cohn's broad and critical scholarship on culture and history in South Asia. Nominations for the Prize may be made by authors, publishers, or other interested members in the field. To be eligible, books must have a 2014 copyright date. Prior publication of an edited volume, exhibition catalog, or translations without critical apparatus does not necessarily disqualify authors; a list of such publications, if any, must accompany the submission. A copy of nominated books must be sent to each member of the selection committee listed below by the AUGUST 1, 2015 deadline. The prize will be presented at the AAS annual conference next spring.

Cohn Selection Committee:

  • Shelley Feldman (Chair), 319 E. Court St., Ithaca, NY 14850
  • Iftikhar Dadi, Dept. of History, GM08 Goldwin Smith Hall, Cornell University, Ithaca, NY 14853
  • Rochana Mazumdar, South Asian Languages and Civilizations, Cinema and Media Studies, University of Chicago, 1130 East 59th Street, Chicago, IL 60637

 

AAS SAC COOMARASWAMY BOOK PRIZE (South Asia)

The Ananda Kentish Coomaraswamy Book Prize will honor a distinguished work of scholarship in South Asian Studies that promises to define or redefine the understanding of whole subject areas.

The committee particularly seeks nominations of broad scholarly works with innovative approaches that may concern any topic in any discipline or may cross disciplinary lines. The prize recognizes a distinguished scholarly monograph beyond the author or authors' first monograph or published research project. Nominations for the book prize may be made by authors, publishers, or other interested members in the field. To be eligible, nominated books must be original, scholarly, nonfiction works with a 2014 copyright date, and must be the first publication of this text in English anywhere in the world. Nominated books should be accompanied by a list of the authors' prior publications. The book's subject matter must deal with South Asia (India, Pakistan, Nepal, Afghanistan, Sri Lanka, Bangladesh). Works are not eligible if they are reference works, exhibition catalogs, textbooks, essay collections, poetry, fiction, memoirs, or autobiographies. Translations will be eligible only if they include a substantial introduction, annotation, or critical apparatus. Co-authored books are eligible; edited volumes of essays are not. Presses may nominate up to six titles for the Ananda Kentish Coomaraswamy Prize. Nominators must send a copy of each work nominated to each of the three members of the review committee below. These three copies must be received by the committee members no later than SEPTEMBER 1, 2015. The prize will be presented at the AAS annual conference next spring.

Coomaraswamy Selection Committee:

  • Ann Grodzins Gold (Chair), Dept. of Religion, 501 Hall of Languages, Syracuse University, Syracuse, NY 13244
  • David Lelyveld, 730 Fort Washington Ave., Apt. 2B, New York, NY 10040
  • Ajay Sinha, Art & Art History Dept., Mt. Holyoke College, South Hadley, MA 01075

 

AAS SAC RAMANUJAN BOOK PRIZE FOR TRANSLATION (South Asia)

A.K. Ramanujan (1929–1993) was born and educated in Mysore, India. He taught at the University of Chicago for more than three decades, where he served as the chairman of the Department of South Asian Languages and Civilizations. He earned the Padma Shri in 1976 and a MacArthur Fellowship in 1983. In recognition of the excellence of his translations, the South Asia Council of the Association for Asian Studies has established the A.K. Ramanujan Book Prize for Translation.

The award of $1,000 is given every other year, and is intended to recognize and encourage translations from South Asian languages into English. Translations will be judged by their aesthetic quality and contributions to the field of South Asian studies. Special consideration will be given to innovative work that reaches a wide audience. Please note that books published in 2013 or 2014 are eligible for the prize which will be announced at the AAS annual conference next spring. The deadline for submissions is October 1, 2015. Copies should be sent to each member of the selection committee.

Ramanujan Selection Committee:

  • Paula Richman (Chair), Dept. of Religion, Rice 325, Oberlin College, 10 N. Professor St., Oberlin, OH 44704-1095
  • Lawrence McCrea, 1326 East State St., Ithaca, NY 14850
  • Frances Pritchett, 401 Knox Hall, Columbia University, 606 W. 122nd St., New York, NY 10027

 

AAS SEAC HARRY J. BENDA PRIZE (Southeast Asia)

The Harry J. Benda Prize of the AAS is given annually to an outstanding newer scholar from any discipline or country specialization of Southeast Asian studies for a first book in the field. There are no citizenship or residence requirements for nominees.

The award, which honors one of the pioneers in the field of Southeast Asian studies, has been presented 31 times since 1977. The Benda Prize Committee, appointed by the Southeast Asia Council of the AAS, seeks and receives nominations from which to select the yearly recipient. Nominations for the prize may be made by trade book publishers, university presses, or any interested AAS member. Self-nomination is discouraged. Authors need not be AAS members. Original, scholarly, nonfiction works in English with a copyright date of 2013 or 2014 are eligible, but reference works, exhibition catalogs, translations, textbooks, essay collections, poetry, fiction, travel books, memoirs, or autobiographies are not eligible. Nominators must send one copy of each nominated work to each of the committee members listed below, to be received by them no later than AUGUST 1, 2015. Each entry must be clearly labeled "Benda Prize." The prize will be presented at the AAS annual conference next spring.

Benda Selection Committee:

  • Justin McDaniel (Chair), Dept. of Religious Studies, 223 Cohen Hall, 249 S. 36th St., University of Pennsylvania, Philadelphia, PA 19104
  • Philip Taylor, Dept. of Anthropology, College of Asia and the Pacific, Coombs Bldg, Australian National University, Canberra, ACT, 0200 AUSTRALIA
  • Jeffrey Hadler, DSSEAS, 7233 Dwinelle Hall, UC-Berkeley, Berkeley, CA 94720-2520
  • Chie Ikeya, 16 Seminary Place, Dept. of History, Rutgers University, New Brunswick, NJ 08901

 

AAS SEAC GEORGE McT. KAHIN BOOK PRIZE (Southeast Asia)

The George McT. Kahin Prize of the Association for Asian Studies is given biennially to an outstanding scholar of Southeast Asian studies from any discipline or country specialization to recognize distinguished scholarly work on Southeast Asia beyond the author's first book. The next competition will be announced in the spring of 2016.


 

A.L. BECKER SOUTHEAST ASIAN LITERATURE IN TRANSLATION PRIZE

The A.L. Becker Southeast Asian Literature in Translation Prize will recognize an outstanding English translation of a work of Southeast Asian literature from any country of the region (Brunei, Cambodia, Indonesia, Laos, Malaysia, Myanmar, the Philippines, Singapore, Thailand, Timor-Leste, Viet Nam). Works translated from any Southeast Asian language are eligible. The Prize recognizes the importance of works of translation in teaching about the region. Any translation, published in any format, from a work that may be broadly defined as literature within the norms of the country of publication is eligible. The translator need not be a member of the AAS.

The Prize was established in 2011 and is awarded triennially. Only books with a copyright date of 2012-2014 will be eligible for this year's competition. Nominations for the prize must be received by each member of the selection committee listed below no later than AUGUST 1, 2015. The winner will be announced at the 2016 AAS conference in Seattle. There are no citizenship or residence requirements for nominees. Nominations may be made by publishers or by any member of the Association for Asian Studies.

Becker Prize Committee:

  • Judith Henchy, Head, Southeast Asia Section, Room 131, Suzzallo Library, Section Box 352900, University of Washington Libraries, Seattle, WA 98195
  • Caroline Hau, Center for Southeast Asian Studies, Kyoto University, 46 Shimoadachi-cho, Yoshida Sakyo-ku, Kyoto 606-8501 JAPAN
  • John Marston, CEAA, El Colegio de México, Camino al Ajusco No. 20, México DF 01000, MEXICO
  • Michael Bodden, Dept. of Pacific and Asian Studies, University of Victoria, PO Box 3045 STN CSC, Victoria, B.C. CANADA

 

FRANKLIN R. BUCHANAN PRIZE FOR ASIA CURRICULUM MATERIALS

Established in 1995 by the AAS Committee on Educational Issues and Policy and the Committee on Teaching about Asia, the Franklin R. Buchanan Prize is awarded annually to recognize an outstanding curriculum publication on Asia designed for any educational level, elementary through university. Various formats are acceptable, including print, CD, video, and online formats. Submissions that address underrepresented regions of Asia, as defined by the Association for Asian Studies, are encouraged.

The winning submission will reflect current scholarship, present innovative teaching strategies, and make a significant impact on the intended audience. Submissions must have been published after January 1, 2014, and include extensive teaching strategies in order to be considered.

The 2016 Buchanan prize will be awarded to the author of the work at the AAS Annual Conference in Seattle, Washington on March 31-April 3, 2016. The prize includes a $1,000 monetary award and a one-year membership to AAS. Submissions are due November 1, 2015.

For more information and a submission form, please contact the Chair of the Committee, Brenda G. Jordan; Phone: (412) 648-7763; E-mail: jordanb@pitt.edu