The Charles Taylor Book Award 2018 Call for Nominations

The Charles Taylor Book Award 2018

Nomination deadline: 1 April 2018

The Interpretive Methodologies and Methods Conference Group of the APSA calls for nominations for the Charles Taylor Book Award for the best book in political science that employs or develops interpretive methodologies and methods.

This award is named in recognition of the contributions of Charles Taylor to the advancement of interpretive thinking in the political and social sciences. In his 1971 essay “Interpretation and the Sciences of Man,” Taylor powerfully critiqued the aspiration to model the study of politics on the natural sciences, and cogently explained how “interpretation is essential to explanation” in the human sciences. This essay, along with Taylor’s “Philosophical Papers” and many other articles, book chapters, and volumes, have long been a source of inspiration for scholars seeking to develop and apply an interpretive approach to the study of politics.

The award will be given to a book exploring any aspect of political life that either engages interpretive methodological issues or reports the results of empirical research conducted using interpretive research methods. Eligible books will pursue one or both of these interpretive projects. The book may engage some variety of interpretive ideals or practices philosophically, in keeping with much of Professor Taylor’s work and consistent with the sense of methodology as a practical rationality rooted in a set of philosophical concerns and dispositions (e.g., ontological and epistemological assumptions). At the same time or alternatively, the book may take the form of an empirical study that pursues and explicitly reflects on methodological issues surrounding the conduct of the research. The nominated work may be either a single- or multi-authored book or an edited volume.

The award will be announced and presented at the annual APSA conference during the business meeting or reception of the Interpretive Methodologies and Methods Conference-related Group (IMM CG). To be eligible, books must have been published during the two-calendar-year period prior to the year of the APSA meeting, as defined by the book’s copyright date. To be eligible for the 2018 Taylor Award, the nominated book must bear a copyright date of either 2016 or 2017. The award committee is under no obligation to make an award in a year in which submissions do not merit such recognition.

To be considered for the 2018 award, three copies of the nominated book must be received by April 1, 2018. Please send an email to the committee chair, Sarah Wiebe, at, notifying her of the nomination. Authors may nominate their own work; we will also accept nominations from readers and publishers. One copy of the nominated book should be sent to each member of the award committee.

Members of the award committee for 2018 are:

  • Sarah Wiebe (chair), 2424 Maile Way, Saunders 640, Office 633B University of Hawai’i, Honolulu, HI, 96822
  • Kristen Monroe, American Academy in Berlin, Am Sandwerder 17-19, 14109 Berlin, Germany.
  • Nick Cheesman, c/o Sor.Rattanamanee Polkla, Community Resource Centre Foundation, 1518 Soi Jaransanitwong 75, Bangplad, Bangplad, Bangkok 10700, Thailand



Previous award winners:

2017: Sarah Wiebe, University of Hawai’i at Mānoa. Everyday Exposure: Indigenous Mobilization and Environmental Justice in Canada’s Chemical Valley. (UBC Press, 2016)

2016: Daniel Kato, Queen Mary University of London, Liberalizing Lynching: Building a New Racialized State (Oxford University Press, 2015)

2015: Davina Cooper, University of Kent, Everyday Utopias: The Conceptual Life of Promising Spaces (Duke University Press, 2014).

2014: Paul Amar, UC-Santa Barbara, The Security Archipelago: Human-Security States, Sexuality Politics, and the End of Neoliberalism (Duke University Press, 2013).

2013: Sharon Sliwinski, University of Western Ontario, Human Rights in Camera (University of Chicago Press, 2011).

2012:  No books considered.

2011:  No award presented.

2010:  Michael Loriaux, Northwestern University, European Union and the Deconstruction of the Rhineland Frontier (Cambridge University Press, 2008).