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2012 Honors, Prizes and Award Winners

The AFS announced these recipients of honors, prizes, and awards at the 2012 Annual Meeting.

Wolfgang Mieder of the University of Vermont received the AFS Lifetime Scholarly Achievement Award, given to recognize a career of excellence in folklore scholarship, from the Society and the Fellows.

The Fellows of the American Folklore Society announced that four new members had been elected to this AFS honorary and service body: Jane Beck, founder of the Vermont Folklife Center; Burt Feintuch of the University of New Hampshire, Marcia Gaudet, formerly of the University of Louisiana-Lafayette, and Jim Griffith, formerly of the University of Arizona.

Debra Lattanzi Shutika of George Mason University received the Society’s Chicago Folklore Prize, given to recognize the best folklore book of the year, for her Beyond the Borderlands: Migration and Belonging in the United States and Mexico (University of California, Press, 2011).

Bob Gates of the Kentucky Folklife Program, and Ethel Raim, co-founder of the Center for Traditional Music and Dance in New York City, shared the Society’s Benjamin A. Botkin Prize, given for lifetime achievement in public folklore.

Kate Parker Horigan of The Ohio State University received the Society’s Zora Neale Hurston Prize, given to a graduate or undergraduate student for the best work on African American folklore, for her paper "Unofficial Histories in Katrina Survivor Narratives.”

Olivia Cadaval of the Smithsonian Institution’s Center for Folklife and Cultural Heritage received the Society’s Américo Paredes Prize, given for Integrating scholarship and engagement with the people and communities one studies.

A number of AFS sections also announced prize and award recipients at the annual meeting.

Archives and Libraries Section

The Brenda McCallum Prize for an exceptional work dealing with folklife archives or the collection, organization, and management of folklife materials was awarded to Mark Allan Jackson for Jail House Bound: John Lomax's First Southern Prison Recordings, 1933, a project using John Lomax's overlooked recordings to create an audio recording compilation with supporting photographs and history.

Chicano/a Section and the Folklore Latino/a, Caribeño/a, and Latinoamericano/a Section

The Compañero de las Américas Award was awarded to Ariana Hall, founder of CubaNOLA, a cultural and arts organization connecting Latin America to New Orleans.

Children’s Folklore Section

The Section gave the 2012 Aesop Award (for the best recently published children’s book incorporating folklore) to Which Side Are You On? by George Ella Lyon, illustrated by Christopher Cardinale.

Aesop Accolade honorable mentions go to:

  • Mouse and Lion, by Rand Burkert, illustrated by Nancy Eckholm Burkert
  • The Matatu, by Eric Walters, illustrated by Eva Campbell
  • Walking on Earth and Touching the Sky: Poetry and Prose by Lakota Youth at Red Cloud Indian School, by Timothy P. McLaughlin, illustrated by S.D. Nelson

The Children’s Folklore Section also awarded Opie Prizes (given to the best recently published scholarly book on children’s folklore) to: Kathryn MarshThe Musical Playground: Global Traditions and Change in Children’s Songs and Games (New York: Oxford University Press, 2008), and Anna R. BeresinRecess Battles: Play, Fighting, and Storytelling (Jackson: University Press of Mississippi, 2010).

Opie Honorable Mentions go to:

  • Carla PascoeSpaces Imagined, Places Remembered: Childhood in 1950s Australia (Cambridge Scholars Publishing, 2011)
  • Steve RoudThe Lore of the Playground: One Hundred Years of Children's Games, Rhymes and Traditions (London: Random House, 2010)
  • Elizabeth TuckerChildren’s Folklore: A Handbook (Westport, CT: Greenwood Press, 2008).

Eastern Asia Folklife Section

The Section awarded the Jonathan T. Yeh Award for Student Scholarship in Asian and Asian American Folklore to Suzanne Barber for her paper "Shaoshon: A Return to Mao, A Return to Home."

Folk Belief and Religious Folklife Section

The Section awarded its Don Yoder Prize to Benjamin Gatling of The Ohio State University for his paper "The Guide after Rumi: Tradition in Tajik Sufism."

Folklore and Education Section

The Section awarded the Dorothy Howard Folklore and Education Prize to two recipients:Through the Schoolhouse Door:Folklore, Community, Curriculum, edited by Paddy Bowman and Lynne Hamer (Utah State University Press), and Here at Home Cultural Tours, a project of Wisconsin Teachers of Local Culture (a partnership of the Center for the Study of Upper Midwestern Cultures; the Wisconsin Arts Board; Folklore Village; and K-12 educators from throughout Wisconsin).

Folklore and History Section

The Section awarded the Wayland D. Hand Prize, for an outstanding book that combines historical and folkloristic perspectives, to two books: Rachelle Hope SaltzmanA Lark for the Sake of Their Country: The 1926 General Strike Volunteers in Folklore and Memory (Manchester and New York: Manchester University Press, 2012); and Jack ZipesThe Irresistible Fairy Tale: The Cultural and Social History of a Genre (Princeton and Oxford: Princeton University Press, 2012).

Foodways Section

The Section awarded the 2012 Sue Samuelson Foodways Student Essay Prize to (first place) Katie White of the University of Maryland for her paper,"Traveling with Yellow Mary: Gullah Culture, Migration, and the Sensory in Julie Dash'sDaughters of the Dust,"and (second place) to Nancy Yan of The Ohio State University for her paper "Wor Sue Gai and Claiming Local Identity.”

Graduate Student Section

The Section awarded its Kara Nicole Bayless Best Graduate Student Paper Prize to Marcus Cederström for his paper"Folkloristic Koinés and the Emergence of Swedish-American Ethnicity.”

NewFolk@AFS Section

The Section awarded its first annual Bill Ellis Prize for the best graduate student essay that combines research and analysis on folklore, broadly construed, and digital culture, popular culture, or new media, to Matthew Halefor his essay "Airship Captains, Pith Helmets, & Other Assorted Brassy Bits: Steampunk Personas and Material-Semiotic Intertexuality."

Politics, Folklore, and Social Justice Section

The Section gave its 2012 William Still Citation for lifetime achievement in community cultural work to Mary Howell, New Orleans civil rights attorney and activist, who has represented street musicians and performers, Mardi Gras Indian social organizations, and victims of police misconduct, government whistleblowers, and victims of hate crimes. In addition to her legal work, for nearly a decade she produced the Piney Woods Opry, featuring local and traditional music in Abita Springs, Louisiana.

Public Programs Section

The 2012 recipient of the Independent Folklorists Travel Stipend is Gwendolyn Meister, executive director of the Nebraska Folklife Network.

Storytelling Section

The 2012 recipient of the Dan Crowley Student Prize is Milbre Burch, for her essay "Learning to Listen to an All-Day Talker: First-, Second- and Third-Hand Hearing of an Oral Performance by Ray Hicks."

Women’s Section

The 2012 Elli Köngäs-Maranda Professional Prize was awarded to Yvonne R. Lockwood for her book Finnish American Rag Rugs: Art, Tradition, and Ethnic Continuity. The section gave its Elli Köngäs-Maranda Student Paper Prize to Elizabeth Zaleski of The Ohio State University for her essay "Other Writer's Mothers: Reflections on Representing Family.”



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American Folklore Society
Mershon Center, The Ohio State University, 1501 Neil Avenue, Columbus OH 43201-2602 USA
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