CLAJ: Darwin T. Turner Best Essay Award Print

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The College Language Association Journal Announces The Annual Darwin T. Turner Best Essay Award

The inaugural CLAJ Best Essay Award will be given to an essay author chosen from any issue of volumes 58-60 of CLAJ. Criteria for selection includes (1) Effective engagement with the history of ideas (i.e. use of secondary sources), (2) Strength of Argument/Analysis, (3) Advancement of conventional scholarship, (4) Soundness/criticality of scholarly intervention, and (5) Articulation/Presentation of ideas.

The selection process for the 2018 CLAJ Best Essay Award will end March 15th, and awardees will be notified shortly thereafter. The award will be announced and presented during the banquet ceremony of the April 2018 CLA Convention.

Turner edited more than a dozen works of African American literature and published his own writing, including a collection of his poems in Katharsis in 1964, a book on American writer Nathaniel Hawthorne’s novel The Scarlet Letter in 1967, and a literary critique, In a Minor Chord: Three Afro-American Writers and Their Search for Identity in 1971. In a Minor Chord was an analysis on the writings of Jean Toomer, Countee Cullen, and Zora Neale Hurston. Turner edited The Wayward and the Seeking: A Collection of Writings by Jean Toomer in 1980, co-edited The Art of the Slave Narrative: Original Essays in Criticism and Theory in 1982, and wrote for Haki R Madhubuti’s Earthquakes and Sun Rise Missions in 1982.  His other major edited anthologies include Black Dramas in America and Black American Literature. Turner wrote dozens of articles for academic journals and anthologies as a literary critic of African American literature.

Darwin Turner Publications

  • “The Servant in The Comedies of William Congreve.” CLA Journal 1.2 (March 1958): 68-74.
  • “King Lear Reexamined.” CLA Journal 3.1 (Sept. 1959): 40-45.
  • “Dreams and Hallucinations in Drama of the Twenties.” CLA Journal 3.3 (March 1960): 166-172.
  • “A View of Melville’s ‘Piazza.’” CLA Journal 7.1 (Sept. 1963) 56-62.
  • “Smoke from Melville’s Chimney.” CLA Journal 7.2 (Dec. 1963): 107.
  • “The Status of Humanists and the Humanities.” CLA Journal 8.1 (Sept. 1964): 1-121.
  • “A Primer for Critics.” CLA Journal 8.3 (March 1965): 246-276.
  • “CLA and the Language Teacher.” CLA Journal 9.1 (Sept. 1965): 1-11.
  • “’The Negro Novel in America’: In Rebuttal.” CLA Journal 10.2 (Dec. 1966): 122-134.
  • “The Failure of a Playwright.” CLA Journal 10.4 (June 1967): 308-318.
  • “Langston Hughes as Playwright.” CLA Journal 11.4 (June 1968): 297-309.
  • “Negro Playwrights and the Urban Negro.” CLA Journal 12.1 (Sept. 1968): 19-25.
  • “Sight in the Invisible Man.” CLA Journal 13.3 (March 1970): 258-262.
  • “Paul Laurence Dunbar: The Poet and the Myths.” CLA Journal 18.2 (Dec. 1974): 155-171.