Current Winner of the David J. Weber Book Prize

Book Prize Award Lecture: Thursday, February 17, 2022

6 pm lecture
The Texana Room, Fondren Library
6404 Robert S. Hyer Lane, SMU
The 2020 David J. Weber Prize for the Best Non-fiction Book on Southwestern America will be presented to Jennifer L. Holland at a special ceremony and book signing at SMU honoring her volume, Tiny You: A Western History of the Anti-Abortion Movement (University of California Press, 2020).

The judging committee wrote:

Tiny You: A Western History of the Anti-Abortion Movement provides the first history of the anti-abortion movement, one of the most transformative, urgent issues in the contemporary United States. It is a smart, readable, and fascinating exploration of how politics, religion, and whiteness converged to make abortion the overriding issue in the post-Goldwater Republican Party and the Intermountain West. The book makes a convincing case that place, and the American West in particular, is central to the emergence of anti-abortion thought, particularly that anchored around the concept of the fetus as a person with rights. The book is focused, always on point, and well argued. This is echoed in its tight writing, which moves forward with pace before reaching its grim but thumping conclusion. Finally, Tiny You meditates thoughtfully on the political imperatives of historical scholarship. Holland is generous toward her subjects: frank and fair. Her extensive research includes having spent hours conducting oral histories with those she admittedly disagrees with, yet whose historical importance cannot be underestimated

Jennifer Holland is assistant professor of U.S. history at the University of Oklahoma, specializing in histories of gender, sexuality, and race in the twentieth-century North American West.  She is also a core affiliate member of the Women’s and Gender Studies department. Her teaching and research interests include gender and women in the American West; LGBTQ history, sexuality, and reproduction; the Sunbelt; the U.S. after 1945; conservative and right-wing social movements; race and indigeneity; Indian Territory and Oklahoma.

In 2011, the Western History Association Council and the Clements Center agreed to sponsor a new book prize to be administered by the WHA. The David J. Weber Prize for the Best Non-Fiction Book on Southwestern America was presented for the first time at the 2012 annual meeting of the WHA. The purpose of the prize is to promote fine writing and original research on the American Southwest. The competition is open to any non-fiction book, including biography, on any aspect of Southwestern life, past or present, copyrighted in the previous year.  ______________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________

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