LASA2021 Crisis global, desigualdades y centralidad de la vida

Bryce Wood Book Award

About the Award

At each International Congress, the Latin American Studies Association presents the Bryce Wood Book Award to an outstanding book on Latin America in the social sciences and humanities published in English.

Call for nominations

At each International Congress, the Latin American Studies Association presents the Bryce Wood Book Award to an outstanding book on Latin America in the social sciences and humanities published in English.

Books eligible for the LASA2021 International Congress will be those published between July 1, 2019, and June 30, 2020. Although no book may compete more than once, translations may be considered. Anthologies of selections by several authors or re-editions of works published previously are normally not in contention for the award. Books will be judged on quality of research, analysis, and writing, and the significance of their contribution to Latin American studies. Books may be nominated LASA members, or publishers.

Persons who nominate books are responsible for confirming the publication date and for forwarding one copy (printed or digital) to each member of the Award Committee and to the LASA Secretariat, at the expense of the nominators or publishers, the nominee’s complete mailing address, telephone, fax numbers, and e-mail address. Nominations for the Bryce Wood Book Award must be submitted electronically. Please fill out the award submission form by September 20, 2020. For international shipping, please label all books as gifts and not as samples.

All books nominated must reach each member of the Award Committee and the LASA Secretariat by September 20, 2020. By January 20, 2021, the committee will select a winning book. It may also name an honorable mention. The award will be announced at the LASA2021 Awards Ceremony, and the awardee will be publicly honored. LASA membership is not a requirement to receive the award.

Members of the 2021 committee:

Kimberly Theidon (chair)
Tufts University

Leonardo Avritzer
Universidade Federal de Minas Gerais 

Merike Blofield
University of Miami

Jo-Marie Burt
George Mason University

Norma Elia Cantú
Trinity University

Merilee S. Grindle
Harvard University

Katherine Hite
Vassar College

Claudia de Lima Costa
Universidade Federal de Santa Catarina

Amy Lind
University of Cincinnati

Alberto Olvera
Universidad Veracruzana

Charles Walker
University of California Davis

Award history


WINNING BOOK: Jessica Graham, Shifting the Meaning of Democracy: Race, Politics, and Culture in the United States and Brazil (University of California Press, 2019)

HONORABLE MENTION: Paulo Drinot, The Sexual Question: A History of Prostitution in Peru, 1850s-1950s (Cambridge University Press, 2020)

HONORABLE MENTION: Kristina M. Lyons, Vital Decomposition: Soil Practitioners and Life Politics (Duke University Press, 2020)

HONORABLE MENTION: Kevin Lewis O’Neill, Hunted: Predation and Pentecostalism in Guatemala (University of Chicago Press, 2019)


WINNING BOOK: Elena A. Schneider, The Occupation of Havana: War, Trade, and Slavery in the Atlantic World (Omohundro Institute of Early American History and Culture, and the University of North Carolina Press, 2018)


WINNING BOOK: Susan H. Ellison, Domesticating Democracy: The Politics of Conflict Resolution in Bolivia (Duke University Press, 2018)

HONORABLE MENTION: Ana R. Minian, Undocumented Lives: The Untold Story of Mexican Migration (Harvard University Press, 2018)


WINNING BOOK: Stephen B. Neufeld, The Blood Contingent: The Military and the Making of Modern Mexico, 1876-1911 (University of New Mexico Press, 2017)

HONORABLE MENTION: Candelaria Garay, Social Policy Expansion in Latin America(Cambridge University Press, 2017)

HONORABLE MENTION: Ernesto Bassi, An Aqueous Territory. Sailor Geographies and New Granada´s Transimperial Greater Caribbean World (Duke University Press, 2017)

HONORABLE MENTION: Jocelyn OlcottInternational Women´s Year: The Greatest Consciousness-Raising Event in History (Oxford University Press, 2017)


WINNING BOOK: Michael Albertus, Autocracy and Redistribution: The Politics of Land Reform (Cambridge University Press)

WINNING BOOK: Barbara E. Mundy, The Death of Aztec Tenochtitlan, the Life of Mexico City (University of Texas Press)


WINNING BOOK: Ann Twinam, Purchasing Whiteness: Pardos, Mulattos and the Quest for Social Mobility in the Spanish Indies (Stanford University Press)

HONORABLE MENTION: Fabiana Li, Unearthing Conflict: Corporate Mining, Activism and Expertise in Peru (Duke University Press)


WINNING BOOK: David Carey Jr., I ask for Justice: Maya Women, Dictators, and Crime in Guatemala, 1898-1944 (University of Texas Press)

WINNING BOOK: Thomas M. Klubock, La Frontera: Forest and Ecological Conflict in Chile’s Frontier Territory (Duke University Press)


WINNING BOOK: Lillian GuerraVisions of Power in Cuba: Revolution, Redemption, and Resistance, 1959-1971 (University of North Carolina Press)

HONORABLE MENTION: Marc Hertzman, Making Samba: A New History of Race and Music in Brazil (Duke University Press)


WINNING BOOK: Joanne Rappaport and Tom Cummins, Beyond the Lettered City: Indigenous Literacies in the Andes (Duke University Press, 2012)

HONORABLE MENTION: Isaac Campos, Home Grown: Marijuana and the Origins of Mexico's War on Drugs (The University of North Carolina Press, 2012)


WINNING BOOK: Jody Pavilak, Mining for the Nation: The Politics of Chile’s Coal Communities from the Popular Front on the Cold War

HONORABLE MENTION: Kathryn Burns, Into the Archive: Writing and Power in Colonial Peru

HONORABLE MENTION: James Mahoney, Colonialism and Development:Spanish America in Comparative Perspective


WINNING BOOK: Brian DeLay, War of a Thousand Deserts

HONORABLE MENTION: Lauren Derby, The Dictator's Seduction: Politics and the Popular Imagination in the Era of Trujillo


WINNING BOOK: Winifred Tate, Counting the Dead: The Culture and Politics of Human Rights Activism in Colombia

HONORABLE MENTION: Carmelo Mesa Lago, Reassembling Social Security: A Survey of Pensions and Health Care Reforms In Latin America


WINNING BOOK: Myrna I. Santiago, The Ecology of Oil: Environment, Labor, and the Mexican Revolution, 1900-1938

HONORABLE MENTION: Steve J. SternBattling for Hearts and Minds. Memory Struggles in Pinochet’s Chile, 1973-1988 (Vol 2)


WINNING BOOK: Sybille Fisher, Modernity Disavowed: Haiti and the Cultures of Slavery in the Age of Revolution

HONORABLE MENTION: Steve J. Stern, Remembering Pinochet´s Chile: on the Eve of London 1998


WINNING BOOK: Charles L. Briggs and Clara Mantini-Briggs, Stories in the Time of Cholera: Racial Profiling during a Medical

HONORABLE MENTION: Leslie Salzinger, Genders in Production. Making Workers in Mexico’s Global Factories


WINNING BOOK: Carmen Diana Deere and Magdalena León, Empowering Women: Land and Property Rights in Latin America (University of Pittsburgh Press, 2002)

HONORABLE MENTION: Francine Masiello, The Art of Transition: Latin American Culture and Neoliberal Crisis (Duke University Press, 2002)


WINNING BOOK: Greg Grandin, The Blood of Guatemala: A History of Race and Nation

HONORABLE MENTION: Louis A. Perez Jr.On Becoming Cuban: Identity, Nationality and Culture


WINNING BOOK: Friedrich Katz, The Life and Times of Pancha Villa

HONORABLE MENTION: José C. Moya, Cousins and Strangers


WINNING BOOK: Mary Kay Vaughan, Cultural Politics in Revolution: Teachers, Peasants and Schools in Mexico, 1930-1940

HONORABLE MENTION: Terry Karl, The Paradox of Plenty: Oil Booms and Petro-States

HONORABLE MENTION: Carlos Monsivais, Mexican Postcards


WINNING BOOK: William B. Taylor, Magistrates of the Sacred: Priests and Parishioners in Eighteenth Century Mexico

HONORABLE MENTION: Warren Dean, With Broadax and Firebrand: the Destruction of the Brazilian Atlantic Forest


WINNING BOOK: Florencia Mallon, Peasant and Nation: The Making of Postcolonial Mexico and Peru

HONORABLE MENTION: Robert G. Williams, States and Social Evolution: Coffee and the Rise of National Governments in Central America

HONORABLE MENTION: Gustavo Pérez Firmat, Life on the Hyphen: the Cuban-American Way


WINNING BOOK: Nancy Scheper-Hughes, Death Without Weeping: The Violence of Everyday Life in Brazil (Berkeley, 1992 [A Centennial Book])

HONORABLE MENTION: Gordon Brotherston, Book of the Fourth World: Reading the Native Americans through Their History (Cambridge, 1992)

HONORABLE MENTION: Joyce Marcus, Meso-American Writing Systems: Propaganda, Myth and History in Four Ancient Civilizations (Princeton, 1992)


WINNING BOOK: Roberto Gonzalez Echevarria, Myth and Archives: A Theory of the Latin American Narrative (Cambridge University Press)

FIRST HONORABLE MENTION: Ramón A. Gutiérrez, When Jesus Came the Corn Mothers Went Away (Stanford University Press)

SECOND HONORABLE MENTION: Nicholas Shumway, The Invention of Argentina(University of California Press


WINNING BOOK: Paul Drake, The Money Doctor in the Andes: The Kemmerer Missions, 1923-1933

HONORABLE MENTION: Regina Harrison, Signs, Songs, and Memory in the Andes: Translating Quechua Language and Culture (University of Texas Press, 1989)


WINNING BOOK: Thomas Skidmore, The Politics of Military Rule In Brazil, 1964-1985