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Presidential Master's Prize Citation 2016

2016 Prize Winner:

This year's Presidential Master's Prize for Best Graduate thesis on a Comparative Topic goes to Elizabeth Gray, of Brown University, for her thesis, "Dulcinéia Catadora: Cardboard Corporeality and Collective Art in Brazil."

The members of the ACLA Presidential Master’s Prize Committee unanimously agreed that your thesis is original, innovative, and that your comparative approach to cultural, aesthetic, and political elements within the work of Dulcinéia Catadora offers a significant contribution to analyses of poetics and performance. Your theoretical and methodological approach is sophisticated and takes into account a complex history of work on both the politics of poetics and performance art, even while you maintain an awareness of cultural and temporal difference. Your research is thorough, and your examples of Catadora’s work, as well as its influence on the collective art movement are poignant. Furthermore, your ability to engage the economic, poetic, and performative registers at stake in the cartonera movement demonstrates your academic deftness and contributes an important argument to contemporary debates with Comparative Literature and Cultural Studies about poetics, identity, and the global economic crisis. Even while addressing larger cultural issues, your thesis also illustrates a close engagement with questions of authorial agency and the possibility of intentionality and commodification of the author / performer across different temporal moments and geographical spaces. We have confidence that your scholarship will make a significant impact on Comparative Literature and Cultural Studies.

2016 Presidential Master's Prize Committee:
Erin Labbie, Bowling Green State University (Chair)
Anna Kornbluh, University of Illinois, Chicago.
Zita Nunes, University of Maryland