The Classical Association of the Midwest and South (CAMWS) has awarded Dr. Nandini Pandey a 2020 First Book Award for her work titled, The Poetics of Power in Augustan Rome: Latin Poetic Responses to Early Imperial Iconography (Cambridge University Press, 2018).
Pandey’s book was commended as “stunningly smart” and “impressive in its depth, breadth and ambition.” Committee members especially praised the care and precision with which Pandey successfully integrates material culture, particularly numismatic evidence, into efficient and insightful readings. One member wrote, “Pandey clearly has control of a wide range of primary textual and material sources, as well as the massive secondary bibliography.” Another concluded, “The book’s focus on the poets as creators of meaning in dialogue with Augustus allows it to offer important reassessments of the last twenty or so years of discussion of the connections between Augustan literature and imperial culture.”
The criteria for this award include excellent quality, wide significance within a scholarly domain, and demonstrated awareness of international trends. The committee is especially interested in books which shift the conversation substantially in the relevant field of research.