AATSEEL Annual Awards

Due to the COVID-19, we have extended nomination deadlines for the AATSEEL Book Prizes to 1 June, 2020.

The AATSEEL Publications Committee is responsible for overseeing the appointment of editors for the AATSEEL Newsletter and Slavic and East European Journal, and also for the award of prizes for publications in the various disciplines participating in AATSEEL. For information on our activities, please follow the appropriate link below:

    Nominees for the 2020 AATSEEL book prizes

    Best Book in Literary/Cultural Studies (books published in 2018 and 2019 eligible):

  • The Power of Language by Richard S. Wortman (Bloomsbury, 2019)
  • Russia in the Time of Cholera by John P. Davis (Bloomsbury, 2019)
  • Russia's 20th Century A Journey in 100 Histories by Michael Khodarkovsky (Bloomsbury, 2019)
  • The Image of Christ in Russian Literature: Dostoevsky, Tolstoy, Bulgakov, Pasternak by John Givens (Northern Illinois University Press, 2018)
  • Memory Politics in Contemporary Russia: Television, Cinema and the State by Mariëlle Wijermars (Routledge, 2018)
  • The Firebird and the Fox. Russian Culture under Tsars and Bolsheviks by Jeffrey Brooks (Cambridge University Press, 2019)
  • Antisemitism and the Russian Revolution by Brendan McGeever (Cambridge University Press, 2019)
  • The Russian Graphosphere, 1450-1850 by Simon Franklin (Cambridge University Press, 2019)
  • Nabokov and Indeterminacy: The Case of The Real Life of Sebastian Knight by Priscilla Meyer (Northwestern University Press, 2018)
  • How Women Must Write: Inventing the Russian Woman Poet by Olga Peters Hasty (Northwestern University Press, 2019)
  • Everything Has Already Been Written: Moscow Conceptualist Poetry and Performance by Gerald Janecek (Northwestern University Press, 2018)
  • Polish Literature and the Holocaust: Eyewitness Testimonies, 1942-1947 by Rachel F. Brenner (Northwestern University Press, 2019)
  • The Birth and Death of Literary Theory: Regimes of Relevance in Russia and Beyond by Galin Tihanov (Stanford University Press, 2019).
  • The Filmmaker's Philosopher: Merab Mamardashvili and Russian Cinema by Alyssa DeBlasio (Edinburgh University Press, 2019)
  • Travels from Dostoevsky’s Siberia: Encounters with Polish Literary Exiles edited and translated by Elizabeth A. Blake (Academic Studies Press, 2019)
  • That Savage Gaze: Wolves in the Nineteenth-Century Russian Imagination by Ian Helfant (Academic Studies Press, 2019)
  • Tolstoy’s On Life (from the Archival History of Russian Philosophy) by Inessa Medzhibovskaya (Tolstoy Studies Journal, 2019)
  • Plots against Russia: Conspiracy and Fantasy after Socialism by Eliot Borenstein (Cornell University Press, 2019)
  • Life Is Elsewhere: Symbolic Geography in the Russian Provinces, 1800–1917 by Anne Lounsbery (Cornell University Press, 2019)
  • 'The Epistolary Art of Catherine the Great' by Kelsey Rubin-Detlev (Oxford University Studies in the Enlightenment, 2019)
  • A History of Russian Literature. By Andrew Kahn, Mark Lipovetsky, Irina Reyfman, and Stephanie Sandler (Oxford University Press, 2018)
  • Devastation and Laughter: Satire, Power, and Culture in the Early Soviet State (1920s–1930s) by Annie Gérin (University of Toronto Press, 2018)
  • Between rhyme and reason: Vladimir Nabokov, translation, and dialogue by Stanislav Shvabrin (University of Toronto Press, 2019)
  • Ukrainian epic and historical song: folklore in context by Natalie Kononenko (University of Toronto Press, 2019)
  • Pushkin's Monument and Allusion: Poem, Statue, Performance by Sidney Eric Dement (University of Toronto Press, 2019)
  • Selling the Story: Transaction and Narrative Value in Balzac, Dostoevsky, and Zola by Jonathan Paine (Harvard University Press, 2019).
  • Teffi: A Life of Letters and of Laughter by Edythe Haber (London-New York: I.B. Tauris, 2019).
  • Make It the Same. Poetry in the Age of Global Media by Jacob Edmond (Columbia University Press, 2019)
  • Noble Subjects: The Russian Novel and the Gentry, 1762–1861 by Bella Grigoryan (Cornell University Press, 2019)
  • Lyric Complicity. Poetry and Readers in the Golden Age of Russian Literature by Daria Khitrova (University of Wisconsin Press, 2019)
  • Revolution Rekindled: The Writers and Readers of Late Soviet Biography by Polly Jones (Oxford University Press, 2019)

    Best First Book Award:

  • Russia in the Time of Cholera by John P. Davis (Bloomsbury, 2019)
  • Memory Politics in Contemporary Russia: Television, Cinema and the State by Mariëlle Wijermars (Routledge, 2018)
  • Pushkin's Monument and Allusion: Poem, Statue, Performance by Sidney Eric Dement (University of Toronto Press, 2019)
  • The Epistolary Art of Catherine the Great by Kelsey Rubin-Detlev (Oxford University Studies in the Enlightenment, 2019)
  • Only Among Women: Philosophies of Community in the Russian and Soviet Imagination, 1860-1940 by Anne Eakin Moss (Northwestern University Press, 2019)

    Best Edited Multi-Author Scholarly Volume:

  • Tolstoy and His Problems: Views from the Twenty-First Century edited by Inessa Medzhibovskaya (Northwestern University Press, 2018)
  • Russian Science Fiction Literature and Cinema: A Critical Reader edited and introduced by Anindita Banerjee (Academic Studies Press, 2019)
  • A Dostoevskii Companion: Texts and Contexts edited by Katherine Bowers, Connor Doak, and Kate Holland (Academic Studies Press, 2019)
  • Taming the Corpus: From Inflection and Lexis to Interpretation. Editors: Masako Fidler, Václav Cvrček (New York: Springer, 2018)
  • Slavic on the Language Map of Europe: Historical and Areal-Typological Dimensions (Trends in Linguistics. Studies and Monographs) ed. by Andrii Danylenko and Motoki Nomachi (De Gruyter Mouton, 2019)
  • Russian Performances: Word, Object, Action, eds. J. Buckler, J. Cassiday, B. Wolfson (University of Wisconsin Press, 2018)
  • A/Z: Essays in Honor of Alexander Zholkovsky, eds. D. Ioffe, M. Levitt, etc. (Academic Studies Press, 2018)
  • And Thus You Are Everywhere Honored: Studies Dedicated To Brian D. Joseph. James J. Pennington, Victor A. Friedman, and Lenore A. Grenoble (eds.) (Slavica, 2019)
  • Global Russian Cultures edited by Kevin M. F. Platt (University of Wisconsin Press, 2019)
  • The Poetry and Poetics of Olga Sedakova edited by Stephanie Sandler, Maria Khotimsky, Margarita Krimmel, and Oleg Novikov (University of Wisconsin Press, 2019)
  • Reframing Russian Modernism edited by Irina Shevelenko (University of Wisconsin Press, 2018)

    Best Translation into English:

  • Pray to the Empty Wells by Iryna Shuvalova, translated by Olena Jennings and the author (Lost Horse Press, 2019)
  • Smokes by Yuri Izdryk, translated by Roman Ivashkiv and Erín Moure (Lost Horse Press, 2019)
  • On Life: A Critical Edition by Leo Tolstoy, edited by Inessa Medzhibovskaya, translated from the Russian by Michael Denner and Inessa Medzhibovskaya (Northwestern University Press, 2018)
  • Night and Day by Abdulhamid Sulaymon o’g’li Cho’lpon, translated from the Uzbek by Christopher Fort (Academic Studies Press, 2019)
  • Beyond Tula: A Soviet Pastoral by Andrei Egunov-Nikolev, translated from the Russian by Ainsley Morse (Academic Studies Press, 2019)
  • New York Elegies: Ukrainian Poems on the City, edited by Ostap Kin (Academic Studies Press, 2019)
  • EEG by Daša Drndić, translated by Celia Hawkesworth (New Directions, 2019)
  • Doppelganger by Daša Drndić, translated by Celia Hawkesworth (New Directions, 2019)
  • Illegible: A Novel by Sergey Gandlevsky. Translated by Susanne Fusso (Cornell University Press, 2019)
  • Rock, Paper, Scissors: And Other Stories by Maxim Osipov, preface by Svetlana Alexievich, edited by Boris Dralyuk, translated by Boris Dralyuk, Alex Fleming, and Anne Marie Jackson (NYRB Classics, 2019)
  • Stalingrad by Vasily Grossman, translated by Robert and Elizabeth Chandler (NYRB Classics, 2019)
  • Necropolis by Vladislav Khodasevich, translated by Sarah Vitali (Columbia University Press, 2019)
  • New Russian Drama edited by Maksim Hanukai and Susanna Weygandt (Columbia University Press, 2019)
  • Nikolai Nikolaevich and Camouflage by Yuz Aleshkovsky, translated by Duffield White, edited by Susanne Fusso (Columbia University Press, 2019)

    Best Contribution to Language Pedagogy Award:

  • LLC Commons by Shannon Spasova and Liudmila Klimanova (University of Arizona Center for Educational Resources in Culture, Language and Literacy (CERCLL) and Michigan State University, 2019). Open access: https://llccommons.arizona.edu/
  • Lexical Layers of Identity Words, Meaning, and Culture in the Slavic Languages by Danko Šipka (Cambridge University Press, 2019)
  • Faces of Contemporary Russia. Advanced Russian Language and Culture by Olga M. Mesropova (Georgetown University Press, 2019)
  • Rodnaya Rech'. An Introductory Course for Heritage Learners of Russian by Irina Dubinina and Olesya Kisselev (Georgetown University Press, 2019)

      Eligibility requirements and selection procedures for the AATSEEL book prizes:

      AATSEEL  awards prizes to outstanding publications in the fields of 1) language pedagogy, 2) linguistics, 3) literary and/or cultural scholarship, 4) the best first book, and 5) translations into English. For more on the specific eligibility requirements of the individual prizes, and for recent recipients of the prizes, see below. General eligibility requirements and nomination procedures pertinent to all the prizes include:
      1. In order to be eligible for consideration for an AATSEEL Book Award, the author (not the nominator) must be a member of AATSEEL. In the case of books written by more than one author, at least one one of the authors must be a member of AATSEEL. Books by individuals who are not members of AATSEEL (or books written by teams of authors none of whom is a member of AATSEEL) cannot be considered for an AATSEEL book award.
      2. Nominated works must be devoted to the languages and the literary/cultural traditions of Eastern Europe and the former Soviet Union.
      3. For the prizes in linguistics, literary/cultural scholarship, the best first book and translation, works nominated must have been published within the two preceding calendar years. For the prize in language pedagogy, works nominated must have been published within the three preceding calendar years.
      4. The nomination process will normally end on 1 May. Prizes will be announced at the annual meeting of AATSEEL in early January.
      5. Both members of AATSEEL and non-members may make nominations for the prizes.
      6. In order to make a nomination for one of the prizes, one need only send an e-mail message to the chair of the publications committee (see "contact information" below). The chair will then contact the press. Presses wishing to nominate books should send a single copy of the work to the chair, who will (shortly after May 1) supply a list of the relevant jurors and their addresses. Presses are then asked to send a copy of the book directly to each of the jurors.

      Specific eligibility guidelines for each prize:

      Best Contribution to Language Pedagogy:

      The prize in pedagogy may recognize either language-pedagogical materials or contributions to literature on the theory and practice of language teaching. The former category should be understood broadly to include textbooks, computer software, testing materials, and other instructional tools. Nominated works in the latter category should be single or multi-author books. At the committee's discretion, the prize may in some years be granted not to a single publication, but to the aggregate works of one individual whose publications as a whole have made an outstanding contribution to the field of language pedagogy.

      Best Contribution to the Study of Slavic Linguistics:

      Nominated works should be scholarly monographs (including grammars and dictionaries) that treat topics in any field of linguistic inquiry. Typically, translated and edited volumes would not be considered.

      Best Book in Literary/Cultural Scholarship:

      Nominated works should be scholarly books which treat topics in any field of literary or cultural studies. Normally, this will exclude works of historical scholarship, unless these are devoted to the history of literary or cultural institutions or to interdisciplinary topics uniting history and cultural life.

      The Best First Book Award:

      This prize is established in recognition of the best first scholarly monograph published in the field of literary or cultural scholarship that demonstrates original and ground-breaking work by an emerging scholar.

      Best Edited Multi-Author Scholarly Volume:

      Nominated works should be edited, multi-author, scholarly volumes treating topics in any field of literary or cultural studies. As with the “Best Book in Literary/Cultural Scholarly” category, this will normally exclude works of historical scholarship, unless these are devoted to the history of literary or cultural institutions or to interdisciplinary topics uniting history and cultural life. The prize will be awarded on the basis of criteria including (but not limited to): originality, coherence as unified project, importance to the discipline, and quality of research and writing.


      1.Framing: does the editor(s) provide a cogent conceptual framing for the volume that highlights its original contribution to the field and connects the individual chapters;

      2.Framework: are the contributions arranged in sections that reflect the conceptual framing offered in the introduction and in an order that makes sense (i.e., that connects the individual contributions to one another and to the conceptualization of the volume as a whole);

      3.Individual contributions: are the individual chapters of consistently high quality in terms of (a) the relevance and originality of the argument; (b) the rigor and comprehensiveness of the research; and (c) the clarity and effectiveness of the writing/exposition.

      Best Translation into English:

      Nominees for this prize should be book-length translations of a literary work, an epiliterary genre (letters, memoirs, essays, etc.), or a scholarly work. At the discretion of the jury, two prizes may be awarded, one for a literary or epiliterary work, the other for a translation of a strictly scholarly character.

        Conflict of interest statement:

        The following disqualify a book from consideration: 1. If a juror has written the book. 2. If a juror has written an introduction, afterword, or any other part of the book. (The only exception to this is a blurb: this is not a significant enough contribution to disqualify a book.) 3. If a juror contributed substantially to a book, albeit in an uncredited role. For example, if a juror has worked closely with the author on that book (advised the dissertation on which it is based or edited the final product). 4. If a juror is married to the author of a book or romantically involved with the author.

          Publications Committee membership and contact information

          The AATSEEL Publications Committee consists of fifteen members who serve staggered three-year terms, each of whom is assigned to one of four book-prize juries corresponding to his or her disciplinary affiliation and qualifications.

          All correspondence for the committee should be addressed to the current chair (term ends Dec. 2022):

          Professor Yuri Leving
          Department of Russian Studies
          Dalhousie University
          McCain Arts, 6135 University Ave.
          PO BOX 15000, Halifax, NS B3H 4R2, Canada
          (902) 494-1082
          Email: yleving@gmail.com

          Jury for the 2020 AATSEEL book prizes

          Linguistics and Language pedagogy jury:

          • Andriy Danylenko, Pace University (term ends Dec. 2021), Coordinator
          • Cynthia L. Martin, University of Maryland (term ends Dec. 2021)
          • Maria Shardakova, Indiana University (term ends Dec 2021)
          • Richard Robin, George Washington University (term ends Dec. 2023)

          Literary/cultural studies jury:

          • Frederick H. White, Utah Valley University (term end Dec. 2022), Coordinator
          • Eric Naiman, Berkeley (term ends Dec. 2020)
          • Maria Khotimsky, MIT (term ends Dec. 2023)

          Edited Multi-Author Scholarly Volume jury:

          • Helena Goscilo, The Ohio State University (term ends Dec. 2022), Coordinator
          • Brian Baer, Kent State University (term ends Dec. 2023)
          • Marina Balina, Illinois Wesleyan University (term ends Dec. 2023)

          Translation jury:

          • Benjamin Paloff, University of Michigan (term ends Dec. 2021), Coordinator
          • Hilde Hoogenboom, Arizona State University (term ends Dec. 2021)
          • Bill Johnston, Indiana University (term ends Dec. 2023)
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