Felicia A. Holton Book Award


2016 Holton Book winner Patrick Vinton Kirch

The Felicia A. Holton Book Award will be given annually to a writer who, through a major work of non-fiction, represented the importance and excitement of archaeology to the general public. Submissions should focus on archaeology but may also delve into literary and historical topics. The work must have been published in English and bear a date of publication within three calendar years prior to (not including) the year in which the book is considered for an award. From time to time, the Holton Award may be given for lifetime achievement in non-fiction popular writing. Books written by current members of the Governing Board of the AIA or the CAA or by the Committee are not eligible.

Authors and publishers may bring their books to the committee's attention by sending a Letter of Nomination and four sample copies for distribution to the committee to the address below. The Letter of Nomination should address how the book nominated fulfills the guidelines. AIA members are also encouraged to suggest books worthy of the award by filling out the nomination form. Please note that individual AIA members do not need to submit four books. The AIA office will contact the publisher directly. Books may be submitted for the award only once, and should not be re-submitted unless specifically requested by the committee.

Due Date for Nomination

Letter of nomination and books should be received by Institute Headquarters at the below address no later than February 1, 2016.

Holton Book Award
Attn: Awards
Archaeological Institute of America
656 Beacon Street, 6th Floor
Boston, MA 02215-2006
(617) 353-9361
FAX: (617) 353-6550
E-mail: awards@aia.bu.edu

Questions about the Book Award may be directed to Deanna Baker, Membership and Societies Administrator, at the above address.

Guidelines for the Felicia A. Holton Book Award

The Holton Book Award will be given annually to a writer who, through a major work of non-fiction, represented the importance and excitement of archaeology to the general public.

Submissions should focus on archaeology but may also delve into literary and historical topics. The work must have been published in English within the past three years and be available in the United States and Canada.

No nominated book may be resubmitted for the Holton Award unless requested by the Holton Book Award Committee.

From time to time the Holton Award may be given for lifetime achievement in non-fiction popular writing.

Books written by current members of the Governing Board of the AIA or the CAA or by the Committee are not eligible.

Submission Deadline: February 2 at the AIA office in Boston. Submission materials should include four copies of the book and a letter describing how the book fulfills the criteria given below.

The Holton Book Award will be presented at the annual AIA meeting.

Criteria for Submissions

The work should have broad public appeal and be written for an adult lay audience in a clear and engaging style.

It should convey the excitement of archaeological discovery accurately and responsibly.

It should be well-researched and provide new insight for the general public.

 

2016 Felicia A. Holton Book Award: A Shark Going Inland Is My Chief: The Island Civilization of Ancient Hawai’i by Patrick Vinton Kirch

Patrick V. Kirch is Chancellor's Professor Emeritus and the Class of 1954 Professor of Anthropology and Integrative Biology Emeritus at the University of California, Berkeley, and Curator of Oceanic Archaeology in the P. A. Hearst Museum of Anthropology at Berkeley. Born and raised in Hawai'i, Kirch received his B.A. from the University of Pennsylvania and Ph.D. from Yale University. Before joining the Berkeley faculty in 1989 Kirch held positions at the Bernice P. Bishop Museum (Honolulu), the University of Hawai‘i, and the University of Washington. Kirch’s research interests include the evolution of complex societies, preindustrial agricultural systems and agricultural intensification, and the dynamic interactions between human populations and their ecosystems. Kirch uses islands as “model systems” for understanding both cultural evolution and the complex dynamics between humans and their island ecosystems. He has carried out archaeological fieldwork in the Mussau Islands, Solomon Islands, Tonga, Samoa, Futuna, the Cook Islands, Society Islands, Mangareva Islands, and Hawaiian Islands. Kirch has published some 25 books and monographs, and more than 300 articles and chapters on the results of his research. He has been elected to the U.S. National Academy of Sciences, American Academy of Arts and Sciences, and the American Philosophical Society. Among his other honors are the John J. Carty Award for the Advancement of Science (NAS), the J. I. Staley Prize (School for Advanced Research), and the Herbert E. Gregory Medal (Pacific Science Association).

 

Past Winners of the Felicia A. Holton Book Award

2015 Allan Meyers: Outside the Hacienda Walls:  the Archaeology of Plantation Peonage in Nineteenth-Century Yucatan
2014 Joyce Tyldesley: Tutankhamen 
2013 Andrew Wallace-Hadrill:  Herculaneum: Past and Future

Lifetime Achievement:  Brian Fagan 

2012 Jack W. Brink:  Imagining Head-Smashed-In: Aboriginal Buffalo Hunting on the Northern Plains
2011 Benjamin R. Foster and Karen Polinger Foster: Civilization of Ancient Iraq (winner);

Patrick McGovern: Uncorking the Past: The Quest for Wine, Beer and Other Alcoholic Beverages (honorable mention)