Boylston Prizes for Elocution 2018 - 4. 4. 18

Sam Marks, playwright and Senior Preceptor on English, hosted the final round of the 2018 Boylston Prizes For Elocution, held on Wednesday, April 4th in Sever Hall. The Boylston Prizes for Elocution were established in 1817 by Ward Nicholas Boylston in honor of his uncle, Nicholas Boylston, who in 1772 established the Boylston Professorship of Rhetoric and Oratory, and are awarded “for the delivery of memorized selections from English, Greek, or Latin literature,” not to exceed five minutes in length.

Order of Elocution:
Samuel Goldman Reiss “Easter Morning” by A.R. Ammons
Luke Xu “The Waste Land” I (excerpt) by T.S. Eliot
Rob Hopkirk “Childhood is the Kingdom Where Nobody Dies” by Edna St. Vincent Millay
Jacob Roberts “The Man-moth” by Elizabeth Bishop
Chloe Brooks “Three Americanisms” by Mac Wellman

After all of the finalists delivered their selections, a panel of three judges (a lawyer, a member of the clergy, and a professor) met to choose the winners. Along with Marks, this year’s judges were:

Annette Gordon-Reed is the Charles Warren Professor of American Legal History at Harvard Law School, a professor of history in the Faculty of Arts and Sciences at Harvard University, and the Carol K. Pforzheimer Professor at the Radcliffe Institute for Advanced Study. Gordon-Reed won the Pulitzer Prize in History in 2009 for The Hemingses of Monticello: An American Family. Her forthcoming book, co-authored by Peter S. Onuf, is “Most Blessed of the Patriarchs”: Thomas Jefferson and the Empire of the Imagination.

Jonathan L. Walton  is an acclaimed author, social ethicist and religious scholar. He is the Plummer Professor of Christian Morals and the Pusey Minister in the Memorial Church of Harvard University, as well as a member of the Harvard Faculty of Arts and Sciences and Professor of Religion and Society at the Harvard Divinity School.

First place was awarded to Chloe Brooks for her delivery of “Three Americanisms” by Mac Wellman, and second place went to Jacob Roberts, who recited “The Man-moth” by Elizabeth Bishop. Congratulations to all those who participated!