By-Laws

Bylaws of the Women’s Caucus Aidoo-Snyder Book Prize

Preamble: The Aidoo-Snyder book prize is awarded by the Women’s Caucus of the African Studies Association for an outstanding book published by a woman that prioritizes African women’s experiences. Named in honor of Ama Ata Aidoo, the celebrated Ghanaian novelist and short-story writer, and Margaret Snyder the founding Director of UNIFEM, this $500 prize seeks to acknowledge the excellence of contemporary scholarship being produced by women about African women. In alternate years, the prize is awarded for the best scholarly book, or for the best creative work. The Aidoo-Snyder Book Prize of $500 is unusual in that it will be given alternately for scholarly and creative work. Book prize committee members may, in special circumstances, award an Honorable Mention to a runner-up, which will carry no monetary prize. In the event that no book is considered appropriate for the prize in a given year, no award will be given that year.

  1. The Aidoo-Snyder scholarly book prize will be given for the best original scholarly work written by a woman (or women) that prioritizes African women’s experience. To this end, the committee invites nominations from publishers or authors. Self-published books are not eligible, and entries may only be submitted for consideration once. The prize is open to authors who have published books in English and English translation in the two years preceding the award year. The books must significantly deal with Africa (including Cape Verde, and the Islands off the West Coast of Africa; Madagascar; and the Indian Ocean Islands of the East African Coast).

  2. The Aidoo-Snyder creative book prize will be given for the best original creative, non-academic work by an African woman (or women) that prioritizes African women’s experience. To this end, the committee invites nominations of novels, plays, short stories, and poetry from publishers or authors. Self-published books are not eligible, and entries may only be submitted for consideration once. The prize is open to authors who have published books in English and English translation in the two years preceding the award year. The works must significantly deal with Africa (including Cape Verde, and the Islands off the West Coast of Africa; Madagascar; and the Indian Ocean Islands of the East African Coast).

  3. Applicants to the Aidoo-Snyder Prize must be current members of the Women’s Caucus when they submit their entry. Members of the prize committees may not submit books to their own committees.

  4. Applicants for the Aidoo-Snyder Prize must submit the following to the selection committee:

    • One copy of the entry for each committee member.

    • One copy of the application form.

  5. The Prize Committee Members shall:

    • Be appointed by the Co-Convenors to serve for a total of three prize awards.

    • Have terms that are staggered so that each time the committee is in operation, the longest serving member will move to chair, and a new member will be added. In case of an incomplete term of service, an appointment will be made by the Co-Convenors to complete the term of service.

  6. The Prize Committee Chair shall:

    • Ideally have at least one year experience on the committee prior to taking over the position of Chair.

    • Be responsible for overseeing the work of the committee.

    • Convey the results to the Co-Convenors by September 10 of the award year.

    • Make a summary report to the Steering Committee at the annual meeting.

  7. Each member of the Committee shall review and rate each application for the Aidoo-Snyder Prize. From their individual ratings, Committee members shall reach a consensus on the recipient(s) of the Aidoo-Snyder Prize.

  8. The Co-Convenors shall:

    • Contact the recipient(s) of the prize on or before September 15.

    • Present the prize to the winner(s) at the annual Women’s Caucus Luncheon.

  9. Aidoo-Snyder Prize recipient(s) shall be announced a month before the annual conference.

  10. Aidoo-Snyder Prize by-laws and amendments to by-laws must be passed by a 2/3 majority of those members of record who vote, at annual business meetings and/or by online ballots. Changes to by-laws may be proposed by members of the SC, and if approved by a majority of the SC, submitted to the membership.

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