2022 SPA Boyer Prize

2022 SPA Boyer Prize

The Society for Psychological Anthropology awards the Boyer Prize for Contributions to Psychoanalytic Anthropology annually to a book or article published between December 31,2020 and May 31, 2022 that addresses the psychodynamic process in a cultural context. If you have previously submitted for this award, you are no longer eligible to submit again. By “psychodynamic process” we mean the implicit and often unconscious assumptions that shape emotions, relationships, dreams, and other aspects of subjective experience. By “cultural context” we mean the social world in which individuals are embedded and which is the usual focus of anthropological work. The Boyer prize seeks to encourage and to reward work that takes a psychodynamic approach to a cultural phenomenon, an anthropological perspective on the psychodynamically oriented clinical context, or in some way integrates the theoretical or clinical insights of psychoanalysis with the traditional methods or subject matter of anthropology. Winners of the Boyer Prize are members of future selection committees on a three year rotation.

The Boyer Prize is named for Dr. L. Bryce Boyer (1916-2000), a psychoanalyst who advanced the concept of countertransference and who, with his anthropologist wife, Ruth Boyer, conducted long-term research with the Mescalero Apache.

The Boyer Prize comes with a $500 award. Nominations are made by the selection committee, and also may be made by the author or other party. Winners will be announced at the SPA Biennial meetings in Spring 2023. There is a preference for the award to be given to those who are members of the SPA, although this is not a requirement of the award.

All nominations, including self-nominations, must be accompanied by a cover letter from a member of the SPA discussing the significance of the work’s contribution to psychodynamic anthropology. If the nominated work is an article, the nominator must provide a PDF of the work to the chair of the selection committee. If the nominated work is a book, the nominator needs to arrange for copies to be sent to each member of the committee.

If you are submitting a paper, all nomination materials (article PDF, cover letters) should be emailed to the chair of the committee, Dr. Timothy McCajor Hall. In the subject line of the email, please write “SPA Boyer Prize Submission.”

If you are submitting a book, books need to be sent individually to ALL FOUR committee members. Please email Neely Myers, Secretary of the SPA at namyers@smu.edu for mailing addresses for submission of hard copy books well in advance of the deadline. The email subject line must read: “SPA Boyer Prize Address.”

All materials must be received no later than June 1, 2022.

Prize Committee:
Timothy McCajor Hall (Chair)

University of California at Los Angeles

Michael D’Arcy

University College London

Andrea Chiovenda


Emily Ng


Please direct any questions to Neely Myers, Secretary of the SPA: namyers@smu.edu.

All award and selection committees abide by the SPA’s Conflict of Interest Statement and Recusal Policy