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2018 John Gumperz Annual Graduate Student Essay Prize Competition

The Society for Linguistic Anthropology (SLA) announces

The 2018 John Gumperz Annual Graduate Student Essay Prize

Deadline: Wednesday March 21, 2018

The Society for Linguistic Anthropology (SLA) is delighted to announce the inaugural John Gumperz Annual Graduate Student Essay Prize competition.  Each year the Society for Linguistic Anthropology confers an award for a distinguished graduate research paper.  Through a generous gift from Jenny Cook-Gumperz, we have established an endowment fund in honor of distinguished linguistic anthropologist John Gumperz (1922-2013) which supports this annual award, now renamed the John Gumperz Annual Graduate Student Essay Prize.

Awardees receive a cash prize, travel funds to attend the annual American Anthropological Association (AAA) meeting, and an invitation to submit their paper for publication consideration with our signature journal, Journal of Linguistic Anthropology.  In addition, the winner and finalists are invited to participate in an SLA-sponsored panel at the annual AAA meeting, with the competition judges serving as discussants.  This year the annual AAA meeting will be held in San Jose from November 14-18.  Further details on award eligibility, criteria, and submission process are below.

Eligibility & Criteria:  In order to be eligible for the award, the applicant must have been a graduate student in a degree-granting program when the paper was written; must be the sole author of the paper; must submit the paper no more than two years after it was written; and must not have received the first place award in a previous year, within the past 4 years.  Papers which were awarded honorable mentions in previous years are not eligible for submission.  The paper must be an original work based on original research conducted by the author.  Papers will be judged on the basis of research contributions to the field of linguistic anthropology, clarity, organization, and engagement with existing scholarship.  At the time of submission for this competition, the paper must not have been published, submitted for publication, or under review for publication.

Submission Process: The paper should follow the style and format of the Journal of Linguistic Anthropology and must not exceed 25 double-spaced pages, not including bibliography. The paper must be submitted electronically in either .pdf, .doc or .docx format by the March 21 deadline.  It should be sent to:  The cover sheet should include the title of the paper; the author’s name; the author’s email address; the author’s college or university affiliation; and the name of the faculty member who served as the student’s advisor for the paper.

Decisions will be made during the first week of April.  Applicants should be aware of the 1 plus 1 rule for AAA meeting participation, which limits meeting participants to one paper presentation only.