Albert E. Stone (left) and Elmer Suderman (right)
The Stone-Suderman Prize, a $250 cash award, honors the best article published each year in American Studies. The prize affirms the quality of all the essays in the journal as it recognizes an outstanding published piece. It is named for former MAASA presidents Albert E. Stone and Elmer Suderman, two accomplished scholars and writers. Stone served as the Chair of the American Studies program at the University of Iowa from 1977–1983 and from 1985–1986. He has published and edited numerous books on American autobiography. Poet and literary scholar Suderman was a professor of English at Gustavus Adolphus College until his retirement in 1998.
Susan Kollin, Professor and Director of English Graduate Studies at Montana State University, is the recipient of the Stone-Suderman Prize for Volume 49 (calendar year 2010) of American Studies. The selection committee deemed her article “‘Remember, you’re the good guy:’ Hildago, American Identity, and the Histories of the Western” to be an innovative contribution to literature on post-9/11 cinema. More specifically, the committee found particularly convincing her reading of the film Hildago (2004) as a Western constituent of a broader cinematic discourse on American identity after 9/11. The readers found intriguing your contention that the film “advances the idea of Arabs throughout the world as bereft of ‘having no future’” without collaborating with the West—in this case America.
Kristin L. Matthews
Dr. Kristin L. Matthews, Associate Professor of English and American Studies at Brigham Young University, is the recipient of the Stone-Suderman Prize for Volume 49 (calendar year 2009) of American Studies. The selection committee deemed her article “One Nation Over Coals: Cold War Nationalism and the Barbecue” to be an innovative contribution to Cold War historiography, as well as the history of 1950s culture. The committee found particularly persuasive her argument that barbecue served as “a source of stability or security” for Americans who struggled with domestic challenges to heteronormativity, patriarchy, masculinity, and race relations in an era where winning the Cold War loomed large in the national consciousness.
John Haddad, Associate Professor of American Studies and Popular Culture at Penn State Harrisburg, is the recipient of the Stone-Suderman Prize for Volume 49 (calendar year 2008) of American Studies. The selection committee deemed his article “The Wild West Turns East: Audience, Ritual, and Regeneration in Buffalo Bill’s Boxer Uprising” to be an innovative contribution to literatures on Buffalo Bill and the Boxer Rebellion. More specifically, the committee found intriguing his cultural analysis of William Cody’s attempt to make sense of the Boxer Rebellion to the American public by essentially rendering the “Chinaman” as “Indian”—that is, to present “The Rescue at Pekin” as another episode in the winning of the West akin to the Indian wars.
Colin R. Johnson
The Mid-America American Studies Association (MAASA) is pleased to announce that Colin R. Johnson, Assistant Professor of Gender Studies at Indiana University, is the winner of the Stone-Suderman Prize for the best essay published in Volume 48 (calendar year 2007) of American Studies. His essay, “Camp Life: The Queer History of Manhood in the Civilian Conservation Corps, 1933–1937” argues that CCC camps were sites of negotiation over the meaning of masculinity in the 1930s, concluding that “life in the CCC was anything but straight and narrow.”
The award committee noted the essay’s range of relatively untapped New Deal sources—including newspaper articles, photographs, and cartoons—that contest prevailing assumptions about the CCC by bringing to light practices ranging from drag performances to linguistic play. In addition, Johnson argues that understandings of gender and sexuality were created and contested not only in urban areas that are most often the focus of scholarship on queer masculinity; rural locations also function as spaces for forging masculinities.
Johnson earned his Ph.D. in American Culture from the University of Michigan. His research interests include rural life, cultural geography and land use, and the history of technology and agriculture. A version of the essay will be included in a manuscript tentatively titled The Little Gay Bar on the Prairie: Gender, Geography and the Invention of Sexuality in Non-Metropolitan America.