Winner Announced - William Bynum Essay Prize 2015

Posted on 29 June 2016

Lori Jones of the University of Ottawa takes 2015's prize for her entry ‘When Medical Texts Double as Socio-Political Commentary: Exploring Some Other Contexts and Purposes of English Plague Treatises’.

We are delighted to announce that the 2015 Medical History William Bynum Prize has been awarded to Lori Jones of the University of Ottawa for her entry ‘When Medical Texts Double as Socio-Political Commentary: Exploring Some Other Contexts and Purposes of English Plague Treatises’.

The 2015 Medical History William Bynum Prize attracted a strong field of 12 entries, of which at least half were clearly of publishable quality. The four-person committee deliberated carefully the essays. A small cluster stood out, necessitating a second round of deliberations. The result of first prize was for the essay by Lori Jones of the University of Ottawa entitled ‘When Medical Texts Double as Socio-Political Commentary: Exploring Some Other Contexts and Purposes of English Plague Treatises’. This explored with great skill and subtlety the wider contexts of these treatises in the Mediaeval and Early Modern Period. It examines the religious and professional background to the authors and the language they used. However, the Committee believed that an Honourable Mention should also be awarded to the essay, ‘Internationalism and colonialism in conflict? The politics of nutrition in Fiji 1945-1965’, by Sarah Hartley of the University of York, UK. There was little to separate these two fine essays, on very different topics and exploring different sets of materials.

The Committee, which consisted of Professor Colin Jones, Professor Amarjit Kaur, Dr Sue Heydon and Dr Philip Havik, wishes to place on record the high quality of the entries, which speaks well for the vigour of the field. Medical History would also like to thank all those who entered for their interest and for once again making this a such a competitive field.

We are also pleased to announce that the competition will return again this year!  The William Bynum Prize will be awarded to the author of an original essay on any theme relating to the history of medicine and its related sciences. This international competition is open to doctoral students and early post-doctoral researchers (candidates who have completed their PhDs not longer than 3 years before submission of the entry). The Prize’s awarding committee will be chaired by Professor Bynum himself, supported by the editor and members of the editorial advisory board of Medical History.

All submissions should be sent to the journal editor by the 1 January 2017. Details of the winning essay and its author will be announced in mid 2017. All enquiries regarding the competition should be directed to the editor of Medical History, Professor Sanjoy Bhattacharya, Director of the Centre for Global Health Histories. Please note that the specifications for submissions are the same as for a general article submitted to Medical History (please see the 'Instructions for Contributors' on Medical History's website).

The William Bynum Prize takes the shape of a £250 cash award and £250 in Cambridge University Press vouchers. The winning entry will be published in Medical History if it succeeds in undergoing the journal’s usual reviewing processes.

The Prize is generously supported by Cambridge University Press, publishers of Medical History, and is coordinated by Medical History's editorial office which resides within the Centre for Global Health Histories, Department of History, University of York.