Critoph Prizes—Past Award Winners


2022: MICKELL CARTER , of Auburn University, for “Stylin’ Black Power.”

Honorable Mention: 

D. Caleb Smith, University of Tulane University, for “Race, Law, Aluminum: Harris A. Parson and Twenty Years of Workplace Struggle”


2019: JESSICA COHEN, Florida State University, for “A House is Not a Home: Whiteness and the Politics of Space in Toni Morrison’s A Mercy.”

Honorable Mention: 

Emily Masghati, University of Chicago, for “Cohorts that Win: Brown vs. Board of Education and the Legacy of the Rosenwald Fellows.”


2017: JAN HUBENTHAL, College of William & Mary, for “Reimaginings, Circulations, Displacements: AIDS in Uganda and the Exporting of American Homophobia.”
Honorable Mention: 

Tyler N. Taylor, College of William & Mary, for “American Empire in Italy: Italian Reactions to Buffalo Bill’s Wild West Show.”

2015: JOSEPH THOMPSON, University of Virginia, for “Nat ‘King’ Cole’s Civil War: How the Intimate Sounds of Pop Music Ignited Alabama’s Racial Tensions in the 1950s.”

Honorable Mention:

Katie Schank, George Washington University, for “From Infamous to Famous: (Re)Constructing Atlanta’s Public Housing Through Rap and Hip Hop”


2013: DAEGAN MILLER, Cornell University, for “Re-Placing John Brown: Utopian Agrarianism and Black Pioneers in New York State’s Adirondack Mountains, 1846-1859″
Honorable Mentions:

Amy King, University of Mississippi, for “Rape between Women as Social Policing in Valerie Martin’s Property

Regin Mann, University of California, Riverside, for “Behind the Scenes of Emancipation: Race, Ritual, and the Reconstitution of the Antebellum Order”


2011:  CATHERINE MICHNA, Boston College, for “‘Running and Jumping to Join the Parade’: Second-Line Literatures in Post-Katrina New Orleans”

Honorable Mentions:

Katie Burnett, University of Tennessee, Knoxville, for “Commerce, Regionalism and George Washington Cable’s New Orleans”

Frank Cha, College of William and Mary, for “Blacks, Whites, and Us: Chinese Immigrant Women, Jim Crow, and the Search for Belonging in John Jung’s Southern Fried Rice: Life in a Chinese Laundry in the Deep South


2009: KATHLEEN BRIAN, George Washington University, for “‘The Sound of Authority’: Aural Observation and Hallucinatory Culture at the Government Hospital for the Insane, 1895-1905.” Brian presented this paper at the American Studies Association’s November 2010 conference in San Antonio, as part of a special panel co-sponsored by the ASA’s Students Committee and its Regional Chapters Committee.

Honorable Mentions:

Sarah Carter, Harvard University

Tara McLellan, University of Mississippi


2007:   VICTOR HOBSON, a graduate student at the University of East Anglia (and recently a British Research Council Fellow at the Library of Congress’s John W. Kluge Center),  for “Re-Engaging Blues Narratives.” Hobson presented his paper at the American Studies Association’s November 2009 conference in Washington, as part of the first-ever special panel co-sponsored by the ASA’s Students Committee and its Regional Chapters Committee.

Honorable Mention:   

Suzanne Lee, Saint Louis University


2005:   MICHELLE LADD of California State University, Los Angeles, for “Access on a Barrier (Island): Race, Class, and Tobacco in The Awakening”

Second Prize:                  

Christopher Lawton, University of Georgia

Honorable Mentions:    

Andrew Marcum, University of Alabama

Stefanie Herron, University of Delaware


2003:   ANDREW BECK GRACE of the University of Wyoming, for “Matthew Shepard and Billy Jack Gaither: The Politics of Victimhood”

Honorable Mention:   

Robert Powell, Florida State University


2001:    AMY WOOD of Emory University’s Graduate Institute for the Liberal Arts, for “Witnessing Death: Public Hangings and Moving Pictures in the American South”


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