Eileen Basker Memorial Prize

Deadline: July 1, 2024

The Society for Medical Anthropology welcomes nominations for the Eileen Basker Memorial Prize, awarded annually for a significant contribution to scholarship on gender and health by a scholar (or scholars) from any discipline or nation for a specific book, article, film, or exceptional PhD thesis produced within the preceding three years. The Prize is awarded to the work judged to be the most courageous, significant, and potentially influential contribution to this area of scholarship. Winners receive a $2000 cash award and are recognized at the SMA Awards Ceremony during the AAA Annual Meeting.

The Prize was founded by Virginia R. Dominguez in collaboration with the Society for Medical Anthropology in 1987 following the death of Israeli-American critical medical anthropologist and feminist, Eileen Basker, in October 1986. Works most appropriate for this prize analyze the ways in which gender is culturally constructed and/or socially enacted, and consider how health informs these processes and/or their consequences. Works that focus on describing health experiences of people within a particular gender category, rather than more fully analyzing gender, are normally not competitive. Given this, and given that works can be submitted for consideration for one SMA prize only, authors/nominators should decide whether a given work is most appropriate for the Basker Prize and the New Millenium Book Award. The deadline for receipt of materials is July 1, 2024.

Nominations are invited from one or more scholars familiar with the designated work in the form of a letter indicating its impact on the field. Self-nomination by authors, and nomination by presses/publishers, are not permitted. Publishers of nominated books are expected to supply three copies of the relevant work to the Prize Committee Inquiries should be sent to the chair of the Basker Prize Committee, Adeola Oni-Orisan at aoniorisan@ucdavis.edu.  Please contact us before forwarding copies of books or dissertations (print copies required) so that we may provide mailing addresses for all committee members. Do not hesitate to contact us if you are experiencing any trouble with making physical copies of books or dissertations available to the committee.  All materials must be received by the July 1st deadline.

The winners of the Basker Prize are as follows:

2023: Natali Valdez — Weighing the Future: Race, Science, and Pregnancy Trials in the Postgenomic Era; Honorable Mention to Partial Stories: Maternal Death from Six Angles by Clare Wendland

2022: Siri Suh — Dying to Count: Post-Abortion Care and Global Reproductive Health Politics in Senegal; Honorable mention to Lawful Sins: Abortion Rights and Reproductive Governance in Mexico by Elyse Ona Singer

2021: Adrienne Strong — Documenting Death: Maternal Mortality and the Ethics of Care in Tanzania

2020: Elana D. Buch — Inequalities of Aging: Paradoxes of Independence in American Home Care; and Dána-Ain Davis — Reproductive Injustice: Racism, Pregnancy, and Premature Birth

2019: Rebecca G. Martínez. Marked Women: The Cultural Politics of Cervical Cancer in Venezuela.

2018: Anita Hannig. Beyond Surgery: Injury, Healing, and Religion at an Ethiopian Hospital.
Honorable mention to Jailcare: Finding the Safety Net for Women behind Bars by Carolyn Sufrin.

2017: Robert Wyrod. AIDS and Masculinity in the African City:  Privilege, Inequality, and Modern Manhood.

2016: Joanna Kempner — Not Tonight: Migraine and the Politics of Gender and Health;
Honorable mention to 
addicted.pregnant.poor by Kelly  Ray Knight and No One Will Let Her Live by Claire Snell-Rood

2015: Tine Gammeltoft — Haunting Images: A Cultural Account of Selective Reproduction in Vietnam; honorable mention to Sameena Mulla — The Violence of Care: Rape Victims, Forensic Nurses, and Sexual Assault Intervention.

2014: Sarah Pinto – Daughters of Parvati: Women and Madness in Contemporary India

2013: Alexander Edmonds — Pretty ModernHonorable mention to Kimberly Theidon for Intimate Enemies

2012: Carole Browner and Carolyn Sargent – Reproduction, Globalization, and The State

2011: Ida Susser – Aids, Sex, and Culture; and Leslie Reagan – Dangerous Pregnancies

2010: Elly Teman – Birthing A Mother

2009: Janelle Taylor – The Public Life Of The Fetal Sonogram

2008: Matt Gutmann – Fixing Men; and Kathy Davis – The Making Of Our Bodies Ourselves

2007: Sophie Day – On The Game

2006: Michele Rivkin-Fish – Women’s Health In Post-Soviet Russia

2005: Joao Biehl – Vita

2004: Sandra Morgen – Into Our Hands; Honorable mention to Matters of Life and Longing. Female sterilisation in Northeast Brazil by Anne Line Dalsgaard.

2003: Caroline Bledsoe (and Fatoumatta Banja) – Contingent Lives

2002: Rhoda Kanaaneh – Birthing The Nation

2001:  Susan Kahn – Reproducing Jews

2000: Gelya Frank – Venus On Wheels

1999: Rayna Rapp – Testing Women, Testing The Fetus; and Adele Clarke – Disciplining Reproduction

1998: No Prize (As Per Decision Of The Selection Committee)

1997Paul Farmer, Margaret Connors, and Janie Simmons – Women, Poverty, and Aids

1996: No Prize (As Per Decision Of The Selection Committee)

1995: Marcia Inhorn – Quest For Conception

1994: Margarete Sandelowski – With Child In Mind

1993: Barbara Duden – The Woman Beneath The Skin; and Margaret Lock – Encounters With Aging

1992: Nancy Scheper-Hughes – Death Without Weeping

1991: No Prize (Due To A Change In Personnel)

1990: Faye Ginsburg – Contested Lives

1989: Joan Jacobs Brumberg – Fasting Girls

1988: Emily Martin – The Woman In The Body