ProQuest/RSAP Article Prize for 2012 Winners Announced

The Research Society for American periodicals is please to announce the winners of the 2012 ProQuest/RSAP Article Prize. The ProQuest/RSAP Article Prize recognizes the best articles on American periodicals published in peer-reviewed journals by a pre-tenure or independent scholar. Judges Bill Hardwig (chair) , Sara Lindey, and Ben Fagan have worked tirelessly to identify essays that represent some of the most innovative and exciting periodical research work of the past year.

The first prize winner of the ProQuest/RSAP Article Prize for an essay published in 2012 is James Berkey, Duke University, for his essay, “Splendid Little Papers from the ‘Splendid Little War’: Mapping Empire in the Soldier Newspapers of the Spanish American War.”

The two Honorable Mention Award winners for 2012 are Rochelle Zuck, University of Minnesota Duluth, for “‘Yours in the Cause’: Readers, Correspondents, and the Editorial Politics of Carlos Montezuma’s Wassaja” and Jessica Isaac, University of Pittsburgh, for “Youthful Enterprises: Amateur Newspapers and the Pre-History of Adolescence, 1867-1883.”

All three authors will receive checks to help cover some of their work and travel expenses when they discuss their work at their roundtable on their scholarship and their methodology at the Boston ALA in May 2013. The winner’s award is provided by ProQuest, and supplementary funds for the Honorable Mentions are provided by RSAP.

Our judges had these choice word for the 2012 winners…

James Berkey (Lecturing Fellow, Thompson Writing Program, Duke University)

“Splendid Little Papers from the ‘Splendid Little War’”: Mapping Empire in the Soldier Newspapers from the Spanish-American War,” Journal of Modern Periodical Studies (3.2) 2012: 158-174.

The award committee was especially impressed with the attention given to the often-overlooked military publications. We thought the article did an especially nice job of documenting the multiple audiences and the international circulation (both literarily and figuratively) of the ideas about the Spanish-American war within the periodicals. Your essay’s sense of how the logic of imperialism was encoded in these periodicals gives us new ways to think about the war, the nature of turn-of-the-century imperialism, military journalism, and periodical culture more generally.

~Honorable Mention~

Jessica Isaac (PhD Candidate, University of Pittsburgh)

“Youthful Enterprises: Amateur Newspapers and the Pre-History of Adolescence, 1867-
1883,” American Periodicals (22.2) 2012: 158-177.

The committee admired your article’s consideration of the myriad influences on the formation of adolescent identity of this era, from the proliferation of the toy press to the changing social role of teenagers, from the significant function that the amateur press played in the exploration of this identity to the growth of a communal bond of adolescents, even as the definition of this bond shifted and evolved. Your essay also makes a compelling case that we need to be paying attention to these often-overlooked amateur publications, especially when we consider adolescence.

~Honorable Mention~

Rochelle Raineri Zuck (Assistant Professor, University of Minnesota Duluth)

“’Yours in the Cause’: Readers, Correspondents and the Editorial Politics of Carlos Montezuma’s Wassaja,” American Periodicals (22.1) 2012: 72-93.

The committee made special note of your article’s call for increased attention to be given to the understudied archives of American Indian journalism. While such recovery work is admirable on its own, your article’s exploration of how this journalism allowed Montezuma to offer alternate perspectives on Indian affairs was extremely illuminating, demonstrating what the best examples of periodical studies can accomplish. Finally, your attention to Montezuma’s editorial decisions and engagement with the readership wonderfully nicely revealed the tensions between “assimilation,” intertribal communication, and tribal pride/identity.