The Willi Paul Adams Award is given biennially by the Organization of American Historians to the author of the best book on American history published in a foreign language. The award (formerly the Foreign Language Book Prize) is named for Willi Paul Adams, who was an active member of OAH in Germany and a tireless advocate of the internationalization of American history.

The OAH defines both “history” and “American” broadly. To be eligible, a book should be concerned with the past (recent or distant) or with issues of continuity and change. It should also be substantially concerned with events or processes that began, developed, or ended in the American colonies and/or the United States. We welcome comparative and international studies that fall within these guidelines. Authors of eligible books are invited to nominate their work. We urge scholars who know of eligible publications written by others to inform those authors of the award. Since the purpose of the award is to expose Americanists to scholarship originally published in a language other than English—to overcome the language barrier that keeps scholars apart—this award is not open to books whose manuscripts were originally submitted for publication in English or by people for whom English is their first language.

Each entry must have been published during the two-year period July 1, 2016 through June 30, 2018.

The award will be presented at the 2019 OAH Annual Meeting in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, April 4–7.

Please write a one- to two-page essay (in English, along with the title in English) explaining why the book is a significant and original contribution to our understanding of American history, and include a summary of the book’s main argument.

The application should also include the following information:

*mailing address
*institutional affiliation
*fax number
*e-mail address
*language of submitted book table of contents in English

Copies of the book and essay will be reviewed by contributing editors of the Journal of American History who are proficient in the language of the submission as well as by referees (proficient in the language of the submitted book) who are experts on its subject matter.

Four copies of the essay and book, clearly labeled “2019 OAH Willi Paul Adams Award Entry,” must be mailed to the following address and postmarked by May 1, 2018:

Willi Paul Adams Award Committee
c/o Organization of American Historians 112 North Bryan Avenue
Bloomington IN 47408-4141

Bound page proofs may be used for books to be published after May 1, 2018 and before July 1, 2018. If a bound page proof is submitted, a bound copy of the book must be postmarked no later than July 9, 2018 and sent to the OAH address above.

Electronic page proofs also will be accepted as a placeholder only. Please e-mail the file to the OAH Committee Coordinator at by midnight PST on May 1, 2018 and follow with bound copies of the book as soon as they are available but postmarked no later than July 9, 2018.

If a book carries a copyright date that is different from the publication date, but the actual publication date falls during the correct time frame making it eligible, please include a letter of explanation from the publisher with each copy of the book.

The final decision will be made by the Willi Paul Adams Award Committee by February 2019. The winner will be provided with details regarding the OAH Annual Meeting and awards presentation.

Willi Paul Adams Award Committee

Carl J. Guarneri, Saint Mary’s College of California (Committee Chair)

Nicolas Barreyre, École des Hautes Études en Sciences Sociales

Walter D. Kamphoefner, Texas A&M University
Hannah Spahn, University of Potsdam

Jean-Christian Vinel, Université Paris Diderot


For more information, visit the OAH website.