EWS Award Recipients

Edith Wharton Society Award Recipients

Undergraduate Research Awards

2022 Award Recipients

The Award for Archival Research  

Anna Girling, University of Edinburgh

“Edith Wharton and the Cold War”

The Elsa Nettels Prize for a Beginning Scholar 

No award given.

The Undergraduate Research Prize

No award given.

2021 Award Recipients

The Elsa Nettels Prize for a Beginning Scholar 

Emma Aylor, Texas Tech University

“’Nay, rather, Lord, between’: The Unification of Body and Spirit in Wharton’s Deathbed Monologues”

The Award for Archival Research  

Lina Geriguis, Cabrillo College

“Wharton, Equity, and Editorial Decisions: Authorial Agency in Shaping the Disability Discourse in the Rare Editions of Ethan Frome

The Undergraduate Research Prize

Alp Eren Pirli, Boğaziçi University

“Telegraphic Naturalism: Technological Determinism in The Reef

I’m pleased that we had robust submissions this year, and I wish to extend many thanks to the Awards committees for their careful and thoughtful work: for the Elsa Nettels Prize: Myrto Drizou, Donna Campbell, and Laura Rattray; for the Award for Archival Research: Melanie Dawson, Sheila Liming, and Meg Toth; and for the Undergraduate Research Prize: Jay Jessee and Virginia Ricard.

2020: No award competition except for the Undergraduate Research Awards (at link) due to the pandemic. 

2019 Prizes

The Archival Research Award

Rachel Walerstein, University of Iowa, for research relating to her dissertation,Masculine Gestures: Imitation and Initiation in American Modernism.

The Elsa Nettels Award for a Beginning Scholar

Hannah Champion, Université Bordeaux Montaigne, for “’Hold me, Gerty, hold me’: The ‘Lesbianism’ of Lily Bart.”

Undergraduate Essay Award  (co-winners)

Samuel McIntyre, William & Mary, for “Charity Case: The Gendered Economy of Gift-Giving in Summer.”

Katie Williams, William & Mary, for “Object or Owner: Navigating Identity through the Aesthetic in Wharton’s Fiction.”


2018 Elsa Nettels Prize for a Beginning Scholar

Katherine Burd, Georgetown University. “Dangerous Dispossession: Amputation, Bad Atmospheres, and Environmental ‘Slow Violence’ in The Spoils of Poynton and The House of Mirth

2018 Edith Wharton Undergraduate Research Prize

Emma Pierce, University of California, Irvine, for “The Stairs Not Taken: Domestic Space, Gender Roles, and Power in The House of Mirth”


2017 Elsa Nettels Prize for a Beginning Scholar
Deborah Molloy, University of Kent, for “In the Cave of the Oracle: Feminine Tragedy in The House of Mirth and Mrs Manstey’s View.

2017 Edith Wharton Society Award for Archival Research

Isabelle Parsons, The Open University

2017  Edith Wharton Undergraduate Research Prize

Aidan Selmer, College of William and Mary, for “Risk and the Self-Fashioning Women in Wharton’s House of Mirth, Ethan Frome, and Summer.

2017  Edith Wharton Society Award for Archival Research
Myrto Drizou, Valdosta University



2015 Essay Prize Recipients

2015 Edith Wharton Society Beginning Scholar Prize
Girling, Anna. “‘Agrope among Alien Forces’: Alchemical Transformations and Capitalist Transactions in Edith Wharton’s the Touchstone.” Edith Wharton Review 31.1-2 (2015): 74-87. Print.

2015 Undergraduate Essay Prize Winner
Brittany BarronLily Bart’s “Process of Crystallization” Changing Brier Rose’s Fate in The House of Mirth



2013 Essay Prize Recipients 

Both essays will be published in the EWR, vol 29.2:

First prize: Krystyna Michael (PhD candidate, CUNY-Grad Center), for “A Break in the Continuity:” Chaos, Control and Wharton’s Commitment to Form.”

Second prize: Katelyn Durkin (PhD candidate, UVa), for “The (Re)Production Craze: Taylorism and Regress in Edith Wharton’s Twilight Sleep.”

2013 Beinecke Award
Gary Totten, Professor of English, North Dakota State University: “Wharton’s Wild West: Undine Spragg, Medora de Mores, and Dakota Divorce Culture”

2013 The Mount Award
Sheila Liming, Ph D candidate, English, Carnegie Mellon University: “Edith Wharton and Modern Economies of Book Ownership”


2012 Essay Prize Recipients 

Noreen O’Connor

2012 Beinecke Wharton Collection Award: Melanie Dawson, College of William and Mary, “Ageist Modernity: Generational Obsessions in the Work of Edith Wharton and Her Contemporaries”

Dawson will examine Wharton’s letters and drafts of her later fiction for clues to the ways in which her sense of age, beauty, and women’s cultural position were bound up in one another and the ways in which her understanding of these issues may have changed over time and across manuscript revisions.

2012 Mount Research Award: Kaye Wierzbicki, Harvard University, “‘Thinking Away the Flowers’: Edith Wharton and a Return to Form.”

In addition to the Mount’s physical gardens,Wierzbicki will examine Wharton’s annotations and markings in scientific and evolutionary texts and the extensive collection of horticultural and landscape design texts in her library, spanning subjects from arboriculture to irises and from Italian Renaissance gardens to Japanese rock gardens. Wierzbicki will consider Wharton’s thinking about the relationship between text and garden and between garden and nation.


2011 Essay Prize Recipient
Dustin H. Faulstick, Ohio University-Athens, “‘He that Loveth Silver Shall Not Be Satisfied with Silver’: Reconsidering the Connection between The House of Mirth and Ecclesiastes.”

2011 Beinecke Award
Laura Rattray, Research on her chapter for Edith Wharton in Context (forthcoming from Cambridge University Press)


2010 Essay Prize Recipients 

2010 Beinecke Award
Irene Goldman-Price, “Tonni and Herz: Forty Years of Correspondence from Edith Wharton to Anna Catherine Bahlmann”


2009 Essay Prize Recipient
Jason Williams, Brigham Young University-Idaho, “Competing Visions: Edith Wharton and A. B. Wenzell in The House of Mirth

2009 Beinecke Award
Donna Campbell for “Wharton and the Transnational Body: Gabrielle Landormy, Citizenship, and Modernity in the Late Works of Edith Wharton”


2008 Essay Prize Recipient
Ann L. Patten, University of Dublin, Trinity College, “The Spectres of Capitalism and Democracy in Edith Wharton’s Early Ghost Stories”

2008 Beinecke Award
Ferda Asya for “Transatlantic Anarchism in the Fiction of Edith Wharton”


2007 Essay Prize Recipient
Jennie Hann, Johns Hopkins University, for “Perverting Pride and Prejudice: Wharton’s American Alternative to the Novel of Manners: An Essay on The House of Mirth.

2007 Beinecke Award
Shafquat Towheed for ” ‘Reading the Great War: a detailed examination of Edith Wharton’s reading and responses, 1914-1918’

2006 Essay Prize Recipients
Travis M. Foster, doctoral candidate at the U of Wisconsin, Madison, for “Ascendant Obtuseness and Aesthetic Perception in The House of Mirth.”

2005 Essay Prize Recipient
Kate McLoughlin, Balliol College, for “Edith Wharton, War Correspondent.” Edith Wharton Review 21.2 (Fall 2005): 1-9.