The Washington University International Humanities Prize is awarded biennially to a person who has contributed significantly to the humanities through a body of work that has dramatically impacted how we understand the human condition. Past recipients are (above, left to right) Sir David Adjaye (2018), Bill T. Jones (2016), Marjorie Perloff (2014), Ken Burns (2012), Francine Prose (2010), Michael Pollan (2008) and Orhan Pamuk (2006).
The recipient receives a $25,000 prize, delivers a public lecture on the Washington University campus, and engages with students, faculty, administration, and community members throughout their visit.
In the past, nominations for the prize were generated by a committee appointed by the Center for the Humanities that included Washington University humanities faculty and staff and two community members. The committee that nominated candidates also reviewed their work and made the selection.
In order to open the nomination process to a broader constituency and to facilitate greater engagement between the award recipient and the Washington University humanities community, the Center for the Humanities is inviting nominations for the International Humanities Prize from humanities departments and programs, including in the humanistic social sciences (see list below), beginning in January 2021. (Departments and programs are encouraged to collaborate on a single nomination, though that is not a requirement.) The center’s interdisciplinary executive committee of nine faculty members + two community representatives will review the nominations and make the final selection. The selection will be finalized approximately one year before the award ceremony in order to allow ample time for planning. While the center will be responsible for all logistics, it will work closely with the nominating departments and programs in coordinating the visit. Our primary goal is to prioritize student, faculty and community engagement with the recipient and their work over a two- to three-day period.
Click on the button below to download the Call for Nominations and Nomination Form.
African and African-American Studies; American Culture Studies; Anthropology; Art History and Archaeology; Classics; Comparative Literature; East Asian Languages and Cultures; East Asian Studies; Education; English; Film and Media Studies; Germanic Languages and Literatures; History; Interdisciplinary Project in the Humanities; International and Area Studies; Jewish, Islamic and Middle Eastern Studies; John C. Danforth Center on Religion and Politics; Latin American Studies; Music; Performing Arts; Philosophy; Religious Studies; Romance Languages and Literatures; Sociology; and Women, Gender, and Sexuality Studies
Criteria by which nominations will be judged
- The breadth and depth of nominee’s contribution to the humanities
- Potential engagement with faculty and students across multiple fields and disciplines
- Programmatic engagement with community organizations and individuals
- Ability to draw attention, on campus and off, to the significance of the humanities
Timetable for 2022 International Humanities Prize
- Call for Nominations announced: December 7, 2020
- Nominations due: March 15, 2021
- Selection announced: April 15, 2021
- Award ceremony: Spring or Fall 2022