David Thelen Award


Awarded biennially by the Organization of American Historians, the David Thelen Award honors the best article on American history written in a language other than English. Formerly the Foreign Language Article Prize, this award was renamed in appreciation of David Thelen, who edited the Journal of American History between 1985 and 1999. The winning article will be published in the Journal.

Articles published between January 1, 2021, and December 31, 2022, as well as previously unpublished articles, are eligible for consideration.

Submissions should be carefully argued and well written. They should offer an original perspective on colonial American and/or U.S. history. The competition is open to roundtables, keynote addresses, conference papers, and other genres of scholarship. Manuscripts should be framed for and addressed to readers outside the U.S. and written in a language other than English.

Technical requirements and submission process:

Length: Equivalent to approximately 5,000-15,000 words when translated into English.

Languages: Other than English.

Submissions must include a brief abstract (written in English) explaining how the manuscript meets the criteria stated above.

Submissions must be clearly labeled "2024 David Thelen Award Entry." An electronic version of the manuscript must be sent to jahms@oah.org. One hard copy must be mailed to the address below by May 1, 2023:

Benjamin H. Irvin, Chair, 2024 David Thelen Award Committee
Executive Editor, Journal of American History
1215 East Atwater Avenue
Bloomington IN 47401

The application should also include the following information:

  • Author’s name
  • Mailing address
  • Institutional affiliation
  • E-mail address
  • Language of submitted article

Subject-matter experts, as well as readers proficient in relevant languages, will review submissions.

The David Thelen Award Committee will make a final decision by February 2024. At the OAH Conference on American History, the winner will receive a cash award to help defray the expense of translation. By applying for this award, authors grant permission for the OAH to use their data however necessary in the ordinary course of business. ​Read our privacy policy here.

David Thelen Award Committee

Benjamin H. Irvin, Executive Editor, Journal of American History (Chair)
Avital H. Bloch, University of Colima
Nathalie Dessens, Université de Toulouse
Max Paul Friedman, American University
Penny Lewis, Murphy Institute, City University of New York


List of Past Winners