John F. Richards Prize
The John F. Richards Prize in South Asian History recognizes the most distinguished work of scholarship on South Asian history published in English. South Asia is defined as the geographic area included in the modern states of Afghanistan, Bangladesh, Bhutan, Burma, India, the Maldives, Nepal, Pakistan, and Sri Lanka. Eligibility will be defined quite broadly, including books on any period or field of South Asian historical studies and works which integrate South Asian history with broader global issues and movements. In making its selection, the prize committee will pay particular attention to depth of research, methodological innovation, conceptual originality and literary excellence. Works that reinterpret old themes or develop new theoretical perspectives are welcome. Anthologies, encyclopedias and other edited volumes will not be considered. The general rules for submission are:
- Books with an imprint of 2014 are eligible for the 2015 award.
- Nominators must complete the online Data Collection Form for each book submitted.
- One copy of each entry must be sent to each of the following committee members and clearly labeled “Richards Prize Entry.” Electronic copies may be sent only to committee members who have indicated they will accept them.
Please Note: Entries must be postmarked or transmitted by May 15, 2015, to be eligible for the 2015 competition. Entries will not be returned. Recipients will be announced at the January 2016 AHA annual meeting in Atlanta.
For questions, please contact the Prize Administrator.
The deadline for this year’s submissions has passed.
Contact information for the next prize year will be posted by March 31.
2013 Richards Prize
A. Azfar Moin, Southern Methodist Univ.
The Millennial Sovereign: Sacred Kingship and Sainthood in Islam (Columbia Univ. Press)
Like the Safavids in Iran, Mughal emperors from Babur to Aurangzeb embedded their sovereign authority in cosmic, messianic imaginings, linked to Sufism, astrology, genealogy, and millennialism. Using mainly Persian, Arabic, Turkish, and Urdu texts—and Mughal miniature painting—Moin shows how claims to authority were cast in a universalism transcending any single form of religion. His work will recast how we imagine the dynamics of sovereignty during the Mughal era.