The Program in American Studies has awarded Princeton seniors Jacy Duan and Ashley Nurse the Princeton Prize in Race Relations Senior Thesis Prize; Glenna Jane Galarion the Willard Thorp Thesis Prize; Lindsay Emi the Asher Hinds Prize; Phoebe Warren the Grace May Tilton Prize in Fine Arts; and Christian Flores the David F. Bowers Prize.
“This is a stellar cohort,” said Patricia Fernández-Kelly, professor of sociology and Program in American Studies associate director. The prize-winning theses, she said, “honor the interdisciplinary vision of American studies.”
The Princeton Prize in Race Relations Senior Thesis Prize
Endowed by the Princeton University Class of 1966, the Princeton Prize in Race Relations Senior Thesis Prize is awarded annually to a member of the senior class, irrespective of academic concentration, whose senior thesis adds significantly to understanding of issues of race and race relations in the United States, broadly defined.
Nurse’s thesis advisor was Professor of Anthropology Laurence Ralph.
Willard Thorp Thesis Prize
The Thorp prize — named in honor of Professor of English Willard Thorp, a founder of the Program in American Studies and for many years its director — is awarded to the senior in the program who prepares the most outstanding thesis of a clearly interdisciplinary nature.
Galarion’s thesis advisor was Jeffrey Himpele, lecturer in anthropology and director of the Department of Anthropology Ethnographic Data Visualization Lab.
Asher Hinds Prize
The prize, established in memory of Professor of English Asher Hinds by his students and colleagues, is awarded to the senior who does the most outstanding work in the humanities.
The prize committee noted that Emi’s opening trio of poems “present a mesmerizing array of linguistic textures and rhythms” — from “boosterish” to “minimalist” to “exoticizing.” Against this “collaged background” comes into focus “a sensibility that is acutely aware of other people’s perceptions, of self-presentation, of self-packaging.” Upon reaching the end notes, readers learn the three opening poems are derived from a 1962 public speaking manual by Dale Carnegie, “the patron saint of capitalistic optimism — a figure who stands in contrast to the porous, racialized presence of the speaker.”
Michael Dickman, lecturer in creative writing and the Lewis Center for the Arts, served as Emi’s thesis advisor.
Grace May Tilton Prize in Fine Arts
A gift of Robert Schirmer of the Class of 1921 in memory of his mother, the prize is awarded for a thesis exploring an aspect of the fine arts or crafts, past or present, within the present territory of the United States, or elsewhere in the Americas.
Rachael Z. DeLue, the Christopher Binyon Sarofim ’86 Professor in American Art, professor of Art and Archaeology and American studies, and chair of the Department of Art and Archaeology, served as thesis advisor.
David F. Bowers Prize
Politics concentrator Christian Flores received the 2021 prize for work toward a certificate in Latino studies. In nominating letters, faculty wrote that Flores — “a lively presence in class,” “intuitively drawn to both the rigors and rewards of interdisciplinary research and inquiry” and “adept” at traversing disciplinary divides — “dove” into seminar topics, and produced a final paper that was “an impeccable model of both scholarship and practical thinking.” Flores impressed with “embrace of ‘the cultural’ not as a separate realm from the social and political but as an essential, intersecting constellation of institutions, processes and structures.”
In a video statement, Aisha Beliso-De Jesús, professor of American studies and director of the programs in American studies, Asian American studies and Latino studies, congratulated graduating program seniors. “Your work exemplifies the mission of our programs. You have brought to one another perspectives of the study of literature, music, technology, art, history, sociology and anthropology, politics and public policy. You have furthered our understanding of the ways that race, gender, ethnicity and culture are defined and experienced within complex individual and collective identities.”