Winner: Bui, Hanh. “Sycorax and the Anatomies of Old Age.” British Shakespeare Association Conference, Surrey, England (UK), July 2021.
Bui’s “Sycorax and the Anatomies of Old Age” explores representations of aged and aging feminine bodies in Shakespeare’s late play, The Tempest. Employing Rosemary Garland Thomson’s concept of the “extraordinary body”, Bui examines the ways in which aging femininity is described in terms of gendered, racialized, “deviant” anatomies that reify their otherness from European masculine health. The essay offers a determined and incisive reading that pries open a fleeting moment in the text to draw out an astonishingly rich array of concerns. Discourses of theater, medicine, disability, race, and gender all coalesce in this paper in a way that is capacious yet always needful.
Award Committee: Sheila Coursey, Mariah Junglan Min, and Harry Cushman (chair). Awards announcement and presentation took place during the MRDS business meeting in May, held online by way of Zoom due to the COVID19 global pandemic.