The winners of the 2019 OSL Awards are Dr Tom Idema (Modern and Contemporary Literature) and Marieke Winkler. They received their prize during the annual The Netherlands Research School for Literary Studies (OSL) Research Day in Groningen on October 11.
Each year, OSL rewards two of its members with an OSL Award for the publication of an excellent scholarly book and article. The Awards are intended to acknowledge original and innovative contributions to the field of literary studies and to highlight the work of talented scholars at the beginning of their careers. The OSL Awards come with prize money of € 500,- for each award.
Stages of Transmutation
Idema won the award for his book Stages of Transmutation: Science Fiction, Biology, and Environmental Posthumanism, published by Routledge in 2019. In this work Idema analyses contemporary works of American science fiction, reading five novels together with biological and philosophical theories of human-environment interaction. By doing so, the book shows how the novels offer biocultural stories in which bodies are socially and culturally constructed, while social and cultural systems are ecologically constructed.
Quoting from the Jury’s motivation: "Published by a very renowned international publisher (Routledge), this book comprises a cutting-edge study of contemporary science fiction literature in view of the concept of the posthuman and ecocriticism. The close readings of these understudied works of fiction are very solid and provide reflections on our current times and environmental change. The works are placed in the longstanding tradition of the genre in fiction and sometimes even cinema. This is a well written and compelling study, addressing a timely topic from a fresh perspective."