The S. Eric Molin Prize for Best Conference Paper by a Student

Important Update: Abstracts of conference papers are now due to the committee by Friday, October 27th.

Dear EC/ASECS 2017 Presenter,

If you are a graduate or advanced undergraduate student presenting a paper at the meeting, please consider applying for the Society’s Sven Eric Molin Prize for the best paper presented by a student. EC/ASECS established the Molin Prize at our meeting in October 1989 in order to encourage the participation of graduate students in our society.

We named the award after Eric Molin, one of our most beloved members, because his dedication to teaching and to EC/ASECS inspired so many of us. During his career, Eric taught at Ohio University, Randolph-Macon College and, finally, at George Mason University from 1973 until his death on November 4, 1987.

In memory of Eric, many EC/ASECS members contributed generously to the Molin (pronounced mo-LEEN) endowment. Faculty members who supervise students should encourage them to apply. The first prize award is $150.00, and, at the discretion of the committee, a second prize award for $100.00 may be given. The winner will also be recognized in the Eighteenth-Century Intelligencer (glory will ensue!).
If you want to enter your paper, please read the guidelines below, then send an abstract of your paper to ALL THREE currently serving committee members, to arrive no later than OCTOBER 27th {NEW DATE}, 2017:

John Heins:, committee chair
Joanne Myers:
Ellen Moody:

Direct any questions to the committee chair at the address above.
Guidelines for the Molin Prize Contest

(1) Length: The presentation must be an appropriate length; that is, the talk should last no more than twenty minutes. Members of the committee will attend each presentation and time the talks. In practical terms, the text of the essay (exclusive of endnotes) should be no more than nine pages, double-spaced, with twelve-point type and reasonable margins. The committee advises contestants to practice the talk in advance to ensure that it does not run over the allotted time.

(2) Presentation: In order to be eligible for this competition, contestants must be physically present to read the paper at the EC/ASECS conference. An entrant cannot have someone else give the paper since a part of the committee’s evaluation will be on the actual presentation and the way in which the contestant fields questions after the talk. The paper must be unique; that is, a contestant cannot recycle a paper previously presented elsewhere. After the conference, contestants must send each committee member a copy of the paper in full (and with endnotes) by December 2. A summary of the talk as part of a roundtable or panel discussion is unacceptable.

(3) Audience: In addition to the content of the paper, the committee will also evaluate the writer’s ability to make a specialized topic accessible to a wider audience of eighteenth-century scholars. Contestants should recognize that one element of a paper’s success is its understanding of the broader context in which the argument is situated. Because the prize committee is composed of scholars from a range of specialties in 18th-century studies, in various disciplines and national cultures, they may not be familiar with all the criticism on the paper’s topic. Therefore, the essay should establish how the writer’s perspective relates to those of other scholars who have written on the same subject.

(4) Submissions: Entrants must first submit an abstract to the members of the committee by September 30 (see the email addresses above). After the conference, those who submitted their abstracts should send a full copy of the paper to the committee as a Microsoft Word attachment by December 2. Please email your abstracts and papers to all members of the committee; if you do not do this, the committee may not consider your submission. A member of the committee will send an e-mail confirmation of receipt and will alert entrants if any problem arises with transmission. NOTE: the committee will allow entrants to make changes (at entrants’ own discretion) before submitting the paper, including the insertion of parenthetical citations and/or endnotes/footnotes/Works Cited or the rendering of any revisions as prompted by, say, the panel Q and A. Caveat: no paper submitted may be longer than 12 pages (double-spaced, 12 point font, 1-inch margins), all-inclusive.

(5) Membership in EC/ASECS: You must be a current dues-paying member of EC/ASECS by 9/30/17. To join, please see the Membership link on the EC/ASECS web page at

For More Information, see

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