2023 Early Career Scholar Prize Announcement

Humanity is pleased to announce a prize for the best essay published in the journal in a calendar year. The prize is open to graduate students or those without tenure track jobs at the time of submission. It’s our pleasure to announce the winner of the 2023 Early Career Essay Prize for Humanity journal: Howie Rechavia-Taylor.

Howie Rechavia-Taylor,German Colonialism In The Courtroom — Law, Reparation, And The Grammars of the Shoah,” Humanity 14, no. 2 (Summer 2023): 212-229.

Abstract: In the quest to address the lingering consequences of colonialism and slavery, activists and human rights practitioners have increasingly utilized legal channels. This article focuses on the Ovaherero and Nama people’s pursuit of reparations from Germany in hearings held in New York between 2017 and 2019. It explores the historical conditions for bringing such a case in the United States, arguing that the 1990s economy-focused Holocaust Restitution Movement is a crucial backdrop. The argument examines the implications of applying this ‘thefticide’ framework to a colonial genocide, suggesting that it provides both an opening and a foreclosure of reparatory possibility in the context of a colonial history where private property relations were first imposed in order to dispossess. The article demonstrates how specific forms of thinking and reasoning with the question of repair in the aftermath of the Holocaust  (‘grammars of the Shoah’) can come to inform the manner in which the question of repair for other histories of racial violence are narrated and contested.

Congratulations to Rechavia-Taylor on their work!

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