2015 Victor Turner Prize Competition

The Society for Humanistic Anthropology (SHA) announces the 24th annual juried competition for the Victor Turner Prize in Ethnographic Writing. The late Victor Turner devoted his career to seeking an accessible language that would reopen anthropology to the human subject, and the prize will be given in recognition of innovative books that further this project.

Eligible genres include single and co-authored ethnographic monographs, narratives, historical accounts, biographies, memoirs, dramas, or single-authored collections of essays, short stories, or poems. A $500 first-place, a $300 second place and a $200 third-place prize, for books published between April 2013 and April 2015, will be awarded at the annual meeting of the American Anthropological Association in Denver, CO in November 2015.

Books may be entered into the competition by authors, book editors, or colleagues. No formal letter of nomination is needed. Books published in 2013-2015 and entered in last year’s competition may be resubmitted this year with the appropriate entry fee.

Submission fee: For authors who are already SHA members, the entry fee is $25/book. For authors who are not SHA members, the entry fee is $75/book. (Publishers: for all books you submit, please check with the author first to discover whether s/he is a current SHA member and please encourage authors to join SHA).

The fee may be paid either online here (log into Anthro Gateway to get the SHA member rate of $25), or by check (made out to the American Anthropological Association) with the Submission-Fee-Form sent to:

Suzanne Mattingly, Controller
American Anthropological Association
2300 Clarendon Blvd, Suite 1301
Arlington, VA 22201-3386

Send one copy of the book to be entered to each of the three judges (a total of 3 copies):

Victor Turner Prize,
c/o Erik Aasland,
4219 Canyon Crest Road,
Altadena, CA 91001
Victor Turner Prize,
c/o S. Løchlann Jain,
Dept of Anthropology
Bldg 50, Main Quad
450 Serra Mall
Stanford, CA 94305-2034
Victor Turner Prize,
c/o Anand Pandian,
Department of Anthropology
404 Macaulay Hall
Johns Hopkins University
3400 N. Charles St.
Baltimore, MD 21218


All who enter the contest must include a cover letter with four items of required information:

  1. book title, publication year, and publisher,
  2. the author’s contact information including mailing address, all telephone numbers and e-mail address;
  3. the author’s biographical sketch (1-2 paragraphs) including highest degree awarded, in which discipline, and from which institution;
  4. current affiliation (university or otherwise).

Biographical information will be used for presenting the winners and publicizing the results of the competition and will not be used for judging the quality of the entries. Entrants may also include an optional short statement about intellectual training/ orientation, and the circumstances surrounding the research/ writing of the book.

Please send the cover letter and accompanying statements and biographical information to the chair of the Victor Turner Prize Committee, c/o Erik Aasland, (e_aasland@fuller.edu).

The absolute deadline for receipt of the required materials is May 1, 2015.

All inquiries should be directed to Erik Aasland, (e_aasland@fuller.edu).


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