Lester wins critics choice book award

A book co-written by Professor Jessica Lester has won the 2022 American Educational Studies Association Critics Choice Book Award. 

The book, Centering Diverse Bodyminds in Critical Qualitative Inquiry, was envisioned as a direct response to the need to foreground and position disabled, grassroots wisdom and multiply marginalized ways of knowing and being as sources of qualitative methodological insight and development.

"My colleague, disability scholar-activist Emily Nusbaum, and I are so grateful that our book has been recognized with this award,” Lester said. “This was a book project that I was so grateful to be involved with, as I learned a great deal as a scholar during the book's development. At its core, the book was designed to speak back to the power of ableism and epistemologies of ableism that have long been left unquestioned in qualitative research practice."

"We brought together six chapters written by scholars and scholar-activists working at the intersections of disability studies and critical qualitative inquiry,” Lester added. “The contributing authors provide insights into how we might—as qualitative researchers—work to radically include in our research bodyminds previously rendered unthinkable and unlivable."

Each year, a committee of AESA members selects a number of titles it regards as outstanding books that may be of interest to those in educational studies. The Critics’ Choice Award serves to recognize and increase awareness of recent scholarship deemed to be outstanding in its field and of potential interest to members of the Association.