SHAS Dean wins Teaching Literature Book Award

Photo by Rebecca Slater '10 / By Rebecca Studios

The Idaho State University Department of English and Philosophy announced today that “Approaches to Teaching the Works of Octavia E. Butler,” edited by Tarshia Stanley, PhD, has won 2021 Teaching Literature Book Award.

The Teaching Literature Book Award is an international prize for the best book on teaching literature at the college level. The award is presented biennially by the graduate faculty in English at Idaho State University. Stanley, the Dean of Humanities, Arts, and Sciences, and Professor of English at St. Catherine University, calls the award "an incredible honor." 

The goal of the award is to bring recognition to scholars publishing on the teaching of literature at the collegiate level. The prize committee seeks to reward exemplary books that excel in blending literary theory or interpretation with curricular planning and classroom methods. A committee of five judges reviews and selects the winning books.

This year's winner examines the works of a significant writer of speculative fiction, Octavia L. Butler. Stanley is a longtime student of Butler's works, using "Parable of the Sower" as the centerpiece of the first Integrated Learning Series hosted at St. Catherine University in 2019.

In the announcement from Idaho State University, judges praised the book for its presentation of “grounded essays that are short enough for teachers to read and digest as they prepare their own lesson plans.” They also appreciated that the volume promotes teaching of more black speculative fiction, a genre that is “at the center, raising transformative and transdisciplinary possibilities for teachers and those involved in curricular design.”

St. Catherine University congratulates Dean Stanley on this significant honor.