Society for the Anthropology of Work



SAW Awards and Prizes


The CONRAD ARENSBERG AWARD was established by the Society for the Anthropology of Work in 1991 to recognize outstanding contributions to the field.

Past recipients of the Conrad Arensberg Award: Conrad Arensberg (1991), June Nash (1992), Karen Brodkin (1993), Louise Lamphere (1994), Frederick Gamst (1995), Karen Tranberg Hansen (1998), Eliot Chapple (2000), Herb Appelbaum (2001), Judith-Maria Buechler and Hans Buechler (2002), Susan George (2004), Arlie Hochschild (2006), Marietta Baba (2008), Beverly Wright (2010) and Frances Rothstein (2012).

The Diana Forsythe Prize was created in 1998 to celebrate the best book or series of published articles in the spirit of Diana Forsythe’s feminist anthropological research on work, science, and/or technology, including biomedicine. The Prize is awarded annually at the meeting of the American Anthropological Association by a committee consisting of one representative from the Society for the Anthropology of Work (SAW) and two from the Committee on the Anthropology of Science, Technology, and Computing (CASTAC). It is supported by the General Anthropology Division (GAD) and Bern Shen.

Self-nominations are welcomed. To be eligible, books must have been published in the last five years (copyright of 2009 or later). The current submission deadline is 
July 31, 2014 (early nominations appreciated) and nominations should be sent via email to Selection Committee Chair, João Biehl at Publishers, please send a copy of nominated titles to each of the selection committee members listed below.

João Biehl
Department of Anthropology
Princeton University

128 Aaron Burr Hall

Princeton, NJ 08544

Stefan Helmreich
Department of Anthropology 
Room E53-335Q

Massachusetts Institute of Technology

77 Massachusetts Avenue

Cambridge, MA 02142 USA

Nina Brown

Department of Anthropology
Community College of Baltimore County

7201 Rossville Boulevard

Baltimore, MD 21237-3899

Past recipients of the Diana Forsythe Prize include:

2013 Heather Paxson, for The Life of Cheese (University of California Press, 2012).

2011 Alexander Edmonds, for Pretty Modern: Beauty, Sex and Plastic Surgery in Brazil (Duke University Press 2011).

2010 Elly Teman, for Birthing a Mother: the Surrogate Body and the Pregnant Self (U of California Press, 2010).

2009 Emily Martin, for Bipolar Expeditions: Mania and Depression in American Culture (Princeton UP, 2007).
2008 João Biehl, for Will to Live: Aids Therapies and the Politics of Survival (Princeton UP, 2007).
2007: Marcia Inhorn, for Local Babies, Global Science: Gender, Religion and In Vitro Fertilization in Egypt (Routledge, 2003).
2006: Jan English-Lueck, for Cultures@SiliconValley (Stanford University Press, 2002).
2005: Joe Dumit, for Picturing Personhood: Brain Scans and Biomedical Identity (Princeton UP, 2004)
2003: Cori Hayden, for When Nature Goes Public: The Making and Unmaking of Bioprospecting in Mexico (Princeton, 2003)
2002: Lucy Suchman, for the body of her work
2001: Stefan Helmreich, for Silicon Second Nature: Culturing Artificial Life in a Digital World (U of California Press, 1998)
2000: David Hess, for the body of his work
1999: Rayna Rapp, for Testing Women, Testing the Fetus: The Impact of Amniocentesis in America (Routledge, 1999).

The ERIC R. WOLF PRIZE was established in 2003 and is awarded for the graduate paper that best demonstrates an anthropological approach to the study of work in the tradition of political economic scholarship modeled and encouraged by Eric Wolf. Students are invited to submit previously unpublished manuscripts for consideration. Recipients of the prize will be awarded $250 in cash and publication of their essay in the Anthropology of Work Review. Please send all submissions as attached Word documents to Ann Kingsolver ( Submissions need to be received by October 1 to be considered for each year’s prize.

Past recipients of the SAW Eric R. Wolf Prize include:

2012 Rachel Proby Wright for her paper, “Who’s the Boss? The Matryoshka Power and Governance in Nonprofit Organizations”.

2011 June Hee Kwon for her paper, “Rhythm of Circulation: Visas, Labor, and the Bodies of Korean Chinese Migrants in the Age of Transnational Commuting.”

Jeffrey Hoelle for his paper, “The Ranchers of Acre, Brazil: Elite Status and Work in an Environmental State.”

2006: Troy Wilson for his paper, “Migrant Brokers of the Global Tongue: A Case Study in Guadalajara, Mexico”
2005: Laurie Duthie for her essay, “White Collars with Chinese Characteristics: Global Capitalism and the Formation of a Social Identity.” It was subsequently published in AWR XXVI(3):1-12.
2004: Kelly Feltault for her essay, “‘We’re Our Own Boss’: Gendered Class-Consciousness and White Privilege among Hooper’s Island Crab Pickers,” appeared in the Anthropology of Work Review XXVI(1):1-13.
2003: Ariana Hernandez-Reguant for her paper “Artistic Labor and Contractual Citizenship in the Cuban Culture Industries” Anthropology of Work Review XXIII(1-2):3-7.

The newly-established JUNE NASH TRAVEL AWARD is available to students who present papers on SAW reviewed panels at the AAA. If you are a student and are presenting a paper on an SAW panel at the AAAs, please contact Charles Menzies ( for further information.


2014 Call for Nominations

The SAW Book Prize will be awarded this year to an edited collection (not a single- or co-authored monograph) published within the past three years. The criteria are the significance of the research, relevance for the anthropology of work, clarity and effectiveness of the presentation, and appeal to a wider audience in anthropology and beyond. Preference will be given to books based on fieldwork and which have not received another award or prize.

The selection committee consists of members of the Society for the Anthropology of Work. We invite nominations from scholars in all four subfields, book editors, and publishers, including self-nominations. The prize will be awarded at the business meeting of the Society for the Anthropology of Work at this year’s meeting of the American Anthropological Association in Washington, DC, December 3 – 7. 

Past award recipients are:

2013: Seth Holmes  for Migrant Farmworkers in the United States  (University of California Press, 2013), co-winner.

2013: Noelle Molé for Labor Disorders in Neoliberal Italy: Mobbing, Well-Being, and the Workplace (University of Indiana Press, 2011), co-winner.

2012: Carrie Lane for A Company of One: Insecurity, Independence, and the New World of White-Collar Unemployment (Cornell University Press and ILR Press, 2011).

2011: Ann Kingsolver and Nandini Gunewardena for their edited volume 
The Gender of Globalization: Women Navigating Cultural and Economic Marginalities (SAR Press, 2008).

2010: Frances Rothstein for 
Globalization in Mexico: Three Decades of Change (University of Texas Press 2007).

Submissions are due by May 31, 2014. Please send an email to co-chairs Jim Weil at and Eve Hochwald at, describing the book’s contribution to the field, accompanied by reviews, if available. You then will be asked to send copies of the book to the committee members. The prize winner and list of other finalists will be announced by August 1, 2014.

The SAW also recognizes the valuable contributions anthropologists are making in the area of ethnographic film. The newly-established SAW FILM AWARD will honor an outstanding film contribution in the field. Contact Charles Menzies ( for more information.