Recent Junior Essay Titles include:

  • New Medium Means New Message?: An Archaeology of Three Webzines
  • Haunted Words: The Ghost of Hamlet in Mrs. Dalloway
  • Three Stories: How Lao She Teaches an Old Hypocrite New Tricks
  • Love and Longing in the Poetry of Rainer Maria Rilke
  • English Words, Hebrew Text, English Power
  • Olympia and Contemporary Images of the Black Male

Here is a list of Junior Essays since 2006.

Barbara Johnson Junior Essay Prize:

The Barbara Johnson Memorial Prize in Literature was established in 2010 in memory of Barbara Johnson, Professor of English and Comparative Literature and the Frederic Wertham Professor of Law and Psychiatry in Society at Harvard University.  A brilliant scholar, teacher, and translator, she wrote numerous important works of literary theory and criticism, including The Critical Difference: Essays in the Contemporary Rhetoric of Reading (1980), A World of Difference (1987), The Feminist Difference: Literature, Psychoanalysis, Race and Gender (1998), Persons and Things (2008), and Moses and Multiculturalism (2010). She taught at Harvard from 1982-2009, and from 1994 to 2000 she chaired Harvard’s Literature Concentration, where a generation of young scholars discovered how to read and write critically and lovingly under her tutelage.  This prize is awarded annually to the junior essay in the Literature Concentration that best embodies Barbara Johnson’s spirit of literary play and exploration.  It is given in memory of a beloved teacher, critic, and colleague.

Past Barbara Johnson Prize Winners:

-         2019: Byung Joon Lee
-         2017: Tarpley Hitt
-         2015: Colton Valentine
-         2014: Indiana Seresin
-         2013: Rebecca Elliott
-         2012: Sarah McCuskee
-         2011: Marina Connelly