Santa Clara University

Women's & Gender Studies Program


Mary Gordon Essay Prize

Deadline: Monday, April 6, 2015

The Mary Gordon Prize awards excellence in feminist scholarship produced by a graduating Women's and Gender Studies major or minor. The prize is named for Professor Mary Gordon, the first director of Women's Studies at Santa Clara University, and is funded by her daughters, Alexandra and Eve Gordon, in honor of their mother's interest in and distinguished contributions to women's issues, the Women's and Gender Studies Program, and Santa Clara University. The winner of the award, who receives a certificate and a $100 visa gift card, will be announced at the University Honors and Awards Convocation and at the WGST Program Honors Reception (both on Friday, June 12, 2015), and the winner will be listed in the commencement booklet.

Papers will be judged by the WGST Program Council using the following criteria:

  1. Critically examines assumptions about gender, sexuality, race, class, and nationality attendant on the chosen topic; uncovers how race, class, ethnicity, sexual identity, nationality and other bases of domination together inflect how one experiences gender, subordination, and agency.

  2. Explores the production of knowledge, art, literature or other cultural product in terms of how they reflect gendered, raced, classed, ethnic experience.
  3. Argues an original thesis that moves beyond the secondary sources, rather than simply representing, however clearly, arguments and conclusions found in the secondary sources.

  4. Crosses disciplinary boundaries in sources and methods, even if focused primarily on one field.
  5. Integrates recent scholarship on women, gender, sexuality, and/or feminist theory, and utilizes scholarship by women.

  6. Argues clearly and persuasively for the thesis.
  7. Organizes the material efficiently and effectively.

  8. Reflects sensitivity to the use of appropriate language and skill in the use of effective rhetoric.
  9. Demonstrates proficiency in grammar, punctuation and spelling.

  10. Bears the audience in mind.

Guidelines for submission

Only graduating WGST majors and minors may submit papers for the Mary Gordon Prize.

  • Papers written for any class will be considered; the focus of the paper, but not necessarily of the class, must be women's and gender studies or issues.

  • Papers must be double-spaced, titled, and marked "Mary Gordon Prize."Papers may not exceed 40 pages in length.Submission of shorter essays is encouraged.
  • The student's name should not appear on the essay. Attach a separate page with the student's name, address, phone number, email address, title of the essay, and the class and instructor for which it was written.

  • Only one paper may be submitted per student per year.
  • Submissions must be uploaded online by 5 p.m. on Monday, April 6, 2015.

Questions? Email wgst@scu.edu or call the WGST Office at 408-554-4461