Annual Awards for Popular Romance Scholarship

The Romance Writers of America's Academic Research Grant has been awarded yearly since 2005.
The grant program seeks to develop and support academic research devoted to genre romance novels, writers, and readers. Appropriate fields of specialization include but are not limited to: anthropology, communications, cultural studies, education, English language and literature, gender studies, linguistics, literacy studies, psychology, rhetoric, and sociology. Proposals in interdisciplinary and cross-disciplinary studies are welcome. The ultimate goal of proposals should be significant publication in major journals or as a monograph from an academic press. RWA does not fund creative work (such as novels or films). 
 
RWA's review committee, which includes academics with doctorates, makes grant recipient recommendations to the RWA Board of Directors. RWA will fund one or more grants up to a total amount of $5,000. Funds will be calculated/awarded in U.S. dollars. Individual applicants may request up to the total amount. The research grant(s) are intended to support direct research costs associated with the project, including travel, but not equipment.

More details about the grant and how to apply for it can be found here. Details of previous recipients can be found here.

The Francis Award

In 2016 the International Association for the Study of Popular Romance
announced the creation of a new essay award in honor and memory of our colleague Conseula Francis. The winning essay will receive a $250 USD cash prize and be published in the peer-reviewed Journal of Popular Romance Studies, pending any needed revision according to the judges’ comments.
The Francis Award
is for the best unpublished essay on popular romance media and / or the logics, institutions, and social practices of romantic love in global popular culture.  Essays may focus on work in any medium (e.g., fiction, film, TV, music, comics, or advice literature) or on topics related to real-world courtship, dating, relationships, and love.

Conseula Francis’s work on popular romance fiction focused on African American authors and representations of Black love, and priority for the Francis Award will be given to manuscripts that address the diversity of, and diversities within, popular romance and romantic love culture: e.g., diversity of race, ethnicity, gender, religion, class, sexuality, disability, or age.
More details can be found here.

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