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Roger Owen Book Award

Posted on 14 November 2023

Award for lecturer José Ciro Martínez

Lecturer José Ciro Martínez's States of Subsistence, The Politics of Bread in Contemporary Jordan has been announced as the co-winner of the biannual Roger Owen Book Award, which recognizes the very best scholarship in economics, economic history, or the political economy of the Middle East and North Africa.

Announcing José's award, the committee said "Taking khubz arabi as “both an ethnographic object and analytic vantage point,” José Ciro Martínez chronicles how the state effect is produced and performed in and through the bakery. From the middle-out vantage point of this ubiquitous neighborhood staple, Martínez uncovers the important and underappreciated ways in which state-managed bread making defines both the state and the society it governs. Martínez’s creative, rigorous, and superbly written book allows us to think about the relationship between state and society in new ways with application far beyond the case of Jordan and its bakeries."

The award honors Roger Owen for his long and distinguished career and scholarly contributions. The biennial award is given in odd-numbered years and announced at the Awards Ceremony at MESA’s annual meeting.

Earlier in the year, José's book States of Subsistence also received an honorable mention in The 2023 Charles Taylor Book Award for the best book in political science.