Stauter-Halsted wins the AHA’s 2016 Joan Kelly Prize for best book in women’s history

We are delighted to announce that our very own Keely Stauter-Halsted, Professor of History and Hejna Family Chair in Polish Studies, has been selected as the winner of the 2016 Joan Kelly Memorial Prize for her book The Devil's Chain: Prostitution and Social Control in Partitioned Poland (Cornell Univ. Press, 2015). The Kelly Prize is awarded annually by the American Historical Association (AHA) to honor the best book in women’s history and/or feminist theory. The prize will be awarded during a ceremony at the Association’s 131st Annual Meeting in Denver, CO, January 5-8, 2017.

Stauter-Halsted’s book was selected by a prize review committee of AHA members including Serena Mayeri, Univ. of Pennsylvania School of Law (chair); Amy M. Froide, Univ. of Maryland, Baltimore County; Rachel G. Fuchs, Arizona State Univ.; Barbara N. Ramusack, Univ. of Cincinnati; and Judith Surkis, Rutgers Univ., New Brunswick.

“The Devil’s Chain provides a panoramic yet exquisitely detailed analysis that illuminates the place of prostitution in the political imaginary of partitioned Poland, as well as in the lived experience of reformers, physicians, politicians, and sex workers,” commented the Kelly Committee. “Unearthing rich archival evidence, Stauter-Halsted reveals how a moral panic became the staging ground for concerns about international migration, critiques of imperial government, and the emergence of women as political and social actors in a modernized nation-state.”

The Kelly Prize was established in 1984 and named in memory of Joan Kelly (1928–82) to best reflect the high intellectual and scholarly ideals exemplified by her life and work.