18 August 2014

Prestigious prize for book about Vietnam

Prize Professor Tine Gammeltoft receives the AES Senior Book Prize for her book “Haunting Images”. The book deals with the ethical and human consequences of the extensive use of selective reproduction in Vietnam

Tine Gammeltoft, professor at the Department for Anthropology at the University of Copenhagen, is this year´s recipient of the prestigious AES Senior Book Prize which is awarded by the American Ethnological Society. She receives the prize for her book “Haunting Images” which examines the difficult ethical and human choices many women in Vietnam are faced with due to the extensive use of selective reproduction in the country. Ultrasound examinations of fetuses are very common in Vietnam, partly because of the side effects of the herbicide Agent Orange that was used during the Vietnam war.

"Extraordinarily powerful"

Professor Daniel M. Goldstein from the American Ethnological Society says that Haunting Images is “a beautifully written and extraordinarily powerful ethnography”:

- Haunting Images asks big, difficult questions – e.g., what constitutes a human being? – and provides fascinating, sometimes troubling answers. Gammeltoft makes Vietnam global and makes all of us, whatever our nationality or area of research, care about the women and families about whom she writes. As the book’s nominator, Rayna Rapp, put it, “Haunting Images makes for haunting reading.”, says Daniel Goldstein in his motivation for choosing Haunting Images for the award.

10 years research

For Tine Gammeltoft the prize is a welcome and humbling recognition of her work.

- It is a great honour to receive the AES Senior Book Prize. Haunting Images is the result of 10 years research and working on the book has for a long time constituted the core of my work life. For that reason this award means a lot to me, says Tine Gammeltoft.

The AES Senior Book Prize is awarded bi-annually and is given to a work that speaks to contemporary social issues with relevance beyond the discipline and beyond the academy. Beside the honour the prize is 1.000 USD.

Tine Gammeltoft will receive the prize the 6th of December as part of the annual meeting in the American Anthropological Association in Washington D.C.