Senior Novel Project Award Winners

English Department Chair Jenny Huth is pleased to announce the winners of this year's senior Novel Project awards.

"Congratulations to the Class of 2019, which continued the tradition of bold innovation in their Novel Projects! This year’s topics included the the femme fatale, metafiction, post 9/11 literature, the Irish revolution and science fiction ... to name just a few. We salute the honorees of 2019 for taking intellectual risks, committing themselves to the writing process and crafting truly original scholarship," Huth said. 

At St. Stephen's, spring term of senior English is devoted to The Novel Project, a term-long independent assignment intended to give students the freedom to design their own course of study and the guidance to pursue interdisciplinary scholarship. Over the course of three proposals that begins in junior year, each senior builds their own reading list of three novels and one alternative text (film, non-fiction, poetry, graphic novel, short story collection, etc.). They then spend the spring term researching, writing, and presenting their projects. This final term of independent study allows students to create their own spring-term curriculum and gives them real experience with the time-management challenges that they will face in college.

Novel Project Awards 2019
The Come Back to Jesus Award: Kailey Hicks
“Take Me To Church: Deciding Between Humility and Hubris”
              Herman Melville, Moby Dick
              Mary Shelley, Frankenstein
              Mark Twain, Adventures of Huckleberry Finn
              Leif Enger, Peace Like a River
The Terrible Beauty is Born Award: Siofra Murdoch
“If You Want Something Done Right...Agency, Maturity, and Morality in Revolutionary Ireland”
              James Joyce, Dubliners
              James Plunkett, Strumpet City
              Roddy Doyle, A Star Called Henry
              Morgan Llywelyn, 1916
The Lost in Space Award: Clare Quarles
“Live Wrong and Prosper: Social and Political Criticism In Science Fiction”
              Ray Bradbury, The Martian Chronicles
              George Orwell, 1984
              Kurt Vonnegut, Slaughterhouse-five
              Dan Harmon and Justin Roiland, creators, Rick and Morty (tv series)
The Survival of the Fittest Award: Callie Cho
“Dear Humans, You’re Not as Cool as You Think: Survival Fails in Literature and Film”
              H. G. Wells, The Island of Doctor Moreau
              Kurt Vonnegut, Galapagos
              Thomas More, Utopia
              Andrew Niccol, dir. Gattaca (film)
The Yearning to Breathe Free Award: Travis Dowd
“The Border of Opportunity: The Role of Relationships in Immigration to the United States”
              Julia Alvarez, How the Garcia Girls Lost Their Accents
              Colm Toibin, Brooklyn
              Chang-Rae Lee, Native Speaker
              Imbolo Mbue, Behold the Dreamers
The Janus, or the Two Faces of Venus Award: Jordan Cobb
“Sandro Botticelli’s Two Births: Love as a Hopeful Embrace Of and Ingenious Rebellion Against Life”
              Thomas Mann, The Magic Mountain
              Jonathan Safran Foer, Extremely Loud and Incredibly Close
              Albert Camus, The Stranger
              Fyodor Dostoyevsky, The Brothers Karamazov
The Detente with Death Award: Nina Duan
“The Stories of WWII: Cautionary Tales and Human Empowerment”
              Eugene Sledge, With the Old Breed
              Kurt Vonnegut, Slaughterhouse Five
              Anthony Doerr, All the Light We Cannot See
              Markus Zusak, The Book Thief
The “That’s the Tea” Award: Riley Nichols
“That’s What She Said: Writing as a Therapeutic Act”
              Ian McEwan, Atonement
              Sylvia Plath, The Bell Jar
              Alice Walker, The Color Purple
              Asif Kapadia, Amy
The Innocents Abroad, Awaken! Award: Lucy Schmidt
“Lost and Found in Translation: How Travel Disempowers then Empowers Us to Find a Greater Sense of Self”
              Ann Patchett, Bel Canto
              Min Jin Lee, Pachinko
              Sofia Coppola, Lost in Translation
              Alessa Lightborne, The Kurdish Bike
The Make Art Not War Award: Jas Zhang
“War: Different Sides of the Same Bars”
              Italo Calvino, The Nonexistent Knight
              Erich Remarque, All Quiet on the Western Front
              Ismail Kadare, The General of the Dead Army
              Yasumi Matsuno, Final Fantasy Tactics: The War of the Lions (video game)
The Pay it Forward Award: Ben McCord
“Of Life and Legacy”
              Jonathan Safran Foer, Everything is Illuminated
              Mary Shelley, The Last Man
              Colm Tóibín, Brooklyn: A Novel
              Nicole Krauss, The History of Love
The Rethink Pink Award: Lauren Aung
“We’re All Just Penelope: Examining Female Disempowerment in American Reinventions of The Odyssey
              William Faulkner, As I Lay Dying
              Toni Morrison, Song of Solomon
              Charles Frazier, Cold Mountain
              Jeffrey Eugenides, Middlesex
The Spaceships and Savagery Award: Ford Martin
“Frontier Psychiatrist: An Investigation of Liminality, Past and Future”
              Frank Herbert, Dune
              Cormac McCarthy, Blood Meridian
              Joseph Conrad, Heart of Darkness
              Stanley Kubrick, dir. 2001: A Space Odyssey (film)
The It Takes a Village Award: David Allen
“You Can’t Do Everything, But You Can Do Something”
              Fredrik Backman, Beartown
              Nathaniel Hawthorne, The Scarlet Letter
              Jeffrey Eugenides, Middlesex
              David Lynch, dir. The Elephant Man (film)
The Urban Jungle Award: Laura Zhu
“The City and its People: A Mutual Dependence on Existence and Identity”
              Virginia Woolf, Mrs. Dalloway
              Teju Cole, Open City
              Rob Schmitz, The City of Eternal Happiness
              Tash Aw, Five Star Billionaire
The Black Widow Award: Aidan Ellis
“From Mistresses to Mothers: The Femme Fatale as Proto-feminist Icon”
              Margaret Atwood, Alias Grace
              James M. Cain, The Postman Always Rings Twice
              Madeline Miller, Circe   
              Quentin Tarantino, dir. Kill Bill Vol. 1 (film)

The Penelope was the Real Hero Award: Mia Metni
“Failed Uprisings: Novelistic Revisions of Heroism”
              Nathaniel Hawthorne, The Scarlet Letter
              Virginia Woolf, Mrs. Dalloway
              Margaret Atwood, The Handmaid’s Tale
              Suzanne Collins, The Hunger Games
The Life is Meaningless and so is this Award Award: Tom Guan
“Loneliness, the Common Ground for Terror:” Emptiness in the Modern Condition”
              Fyodor Dostoevsky, Notes from the Underground
              Joseph Heller, Catch-22
              Franz Kafka, The Trial
              Jean-Paul Sartre, Nausea
The Photoelectric Award for Literary Analysis: Emiliano Bonilla
“A Light in the Darkness: The Place of Man in a Shadowy Cosmos”
              Aldous Huxley, Brave New World
              George Orwell, 1984
              Sean Carroll, The Big Picture
              Antoine de St. Exupéry, Wind, Sand, and Stars
The Don’t Tell Me to Smile Award: Katya Shmorhun
“Apple of His Eye: How the Male Gaze Interrupts and Shapes Stories of Women”
              F. Scott Fitzgerald, The Great Gatsby
              Vladimir Nabokov, Lolita
              Jeffrey Eugenides, The Virgin Suicides
              Sofia Coppola, dir. Lost in Translation (film)
The Breaking Chains Award: Sirah Diallo
“Colonial Legacies: (Re)writing the Single Story in African and African-American Literature”
              Chinua Achebe, Things Fall Apart
              Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie, Purple Hibiscus
              Trey Ellis, Platitudes
              Ishmael Reed, Mumbo Jumbo
The Don’t Let the Bastards Grind You Down Award: Audrey Czuchna
“Just Hang in There: How Socially-Sanctioned Patriarchal Systems Violate and Oppress Women”
              Margaret Atwood, The Handmaid’s Tale
              Arthur Miller, The Crucible
              Toni Morrison, Beloved
              Meena Kandasamy, When I Hit You
The God is Good...or Maybe Not? Award: Brooke Silverstein
“God In Moderation: An Unveiling of Religion’s Determination of Self”
              R.O. Kwon, The Incendiaries
              Kamila Shamsie, Home Fire        
              Jeanette Winterson, Oranges Are Not the Only Fruit
              Catalina De Erauso, Lieutenant Nun
The Postmodern Award for the Most Meaningful Analysis of the Meaninglessness of Analysis: James Mohn
“Words with Friends: Postmodern Metafiction and the Quandary of Communication”
              Vladimir Nabokov, Pale Fire
              Peter Weiss, Marat/Sade
              Kurt Vonnegut, Slaughterhouse Five
              Italo Calvino, If on a winter’s night a traveler
Congratulations, seniors!

Address: 6500 St. Stephen's Dr., Austin, TX 78746
Phone: (512) 327-1213