University Libraries names Neureuther Competition winners

University Libraries recently announced the 2005 graduate and undergraduate winners of the annual Carl Neureuther Student Book Collection Competition. Awards are $1,000 for each first-prize winner and $500 for each second-place winner.

Graduate category

• First place: Rachel Slaughter’s entry, Well-Tempered Elegance: A Collection Of 1950’s Literary Criticism, is an outgrowth of her doctoral research in English literature. She wrote, “Coming of age during a time when it feels like English departments are experiencing their most severe crises of confidence, … my collection of 1950s literary criticism forms a kind of museum to an era of English studies that seems (though only in retrospect) more stable, more cohesive, more ideal than my own.”

• Second place: James W. Hofman II, completing a combined law degree and master’s in East Asian Studies in Arts & Sciences, entered Japan, The Ambiguous, and My Shelf. His essay takes its title from a work by a Japanese author that symbolizes his reading interests in works mingling themes on memory, solitude, regret or the mercurial nature of human morality.

Undergraduate category

• First place: Devin Naar, a senior in history in Arts & Sciences, submitted his essay From Salonika to America and Back about Ladino-speaking Sephardic Jews. Some items in his collection are in the Ladino language, the Spanish of Jews exiled from Spain in 1492, and written in Hebrew characters, which he taught himself to read.

• Second place: Temu Brown, a freshman working on a degree in biology, titled his entry On My Friends. From an early age, he has built his collection of children’s books pertaining to nature and the environment; they in turn have nurtured ” … my passion about the environment.”

An exhibition of the winners’ essays and books is on view in Olin Library’s Whispers Café.

This competition is made possible by an endowment from Carl Neureuther, a 1940 WUSTL graduate who sought to encourage University students to read for pleasure throughout their lives.