Book Award

The Rhetoric Society of America gives a Book Award for the best work in rhetorical study in a given year. We welcome nominees in any branch of rhetorical studies.

Nominations are reviewed by the Awards Committee of the RSA Board, which recommends winners to the Board for final approval. Submit nominations for the Book Award to the Awards Committee Chair:

Vanessa B. Beasley
Vanderbilt University
The Ingram Commons, 230
Appleton Place, PMB 621
Nashville, TN 37203

To be considered for the Book Award, a scholar must be a member of the RSA. The book award subcommittee will consider any book that has a designated author or authors and that meets the eligibility requirements. Generally, edited collections and second editions are not eligible for this award. Translations are eligible. Please include 4 copies of the book for consideration.

Send any questions by email to

Deadline for nominations: February 16, 2018

The 2018 Book Award honors books published by RSA members between January 1, 2017 and December 31, 2017. Generally, edited collections and second editions are not eligible for this award; translations are eligible. Book Award nominees must supply evidence that the book was published in 2017 (such as the date imprinted on the copyright page). Letters of nomination are welcome but not required. Authors may nominate their own work.

Guidelines for Assessing Nominated Books

In reviewing nominees for the Book Award, the Awards Committee considers:

  • Originality
  • Strength and persuasiveness of argument
  • Engaging style or readability
  • Potential to promote rhetoric among scholars from other fields
  • Potential to promote the general public's understanding of rhetoric

Conflict of Interest for Book and Dissertation Awards.

A member whose book is nominated for the RSA book award may not serve on the book award sub-committee. A member who has worked as a member of the dissertation committee for any nominee for the dissertation award may not sit on the dissertation sub-committee. Members of the Awards Committee who feel that they are unable to be impartial in judging any nominee will recuse themselves from discussion of that nominee.