James Russell Lowell Prize


Open Only to Members of the Modern Language Association

The Committee on Honors and Awards of the Modern Language Association invites authors to compete for the fiftieth annual James Russell Lowell Prize, which will be awarded for a scholarly book published in 2018 by a current member of the association. To qualify for the prize, a book must be an outstanding literary or linguistic study, a critical edition of an important work, or a critical biography. Studies dealing with literary theory, media, cultural history, and interdisciplinary topics are eligible; books that are primarily translations will not be considered. The prize, which consists of a cash award and a certificate, will be presented to the winning author at the association’s annual convention in January 2020.

To enter a book into the competition, authors or publishers should send six copies and confirmation of the author’s membership in the MLA to the James Russell Lowell Prize, Modern Language Association, 85 Broad Street, suite 500, New York, NY 10004-2434. In the case of a born-digital publication, send the relevant media or URL and a letter identifying the work to Publishers may enter more than one title. Books entered in this competition may also compete for one other prize that is not the MLA Prize for a First Book, provided they meet eligibility requirements. Entries will be accepted until 1 March 2019. The winning author will be contacted in September, and a public announcement will be made in early December. Because of the volume of submissions, we regret that we are unable to contact each entrant individually.

For further information, call or write the MLA office of programs (646 576-5141;