Stephanie Merrim, the Royce Family Professor of Comparative Literature and Hispanic Studies, will be honored by the Modern Language Association of America with the Katherine Singer Kovacs Prize for her book, The Spectacular City, Mexico, and Colonial Hispanic Literary Culture, published by the University of Texas Press. The Katherine Singer Kovacs Prize is presented annually for an outstanding book published in English or Spanish in the field of Latin American and Spanish literatures and cultures. The award committee praised the book as a “well-written and thoroughly integrated account that draws on an impressive range of interdisciplinary research and that makes contributions to ideas at the heart of critical debates in literature, colonial studies, and urban studies. The announcement commends Merrim for opening up new ways of understanding the practices of colonialism and the role of indigenous cultures in the New World and states that "her erudition and engagement with literary culture are evident on every page.” The prize is one of 18 awards to be presented on Jan. 7, 2012, during the MLA’s annual convention in Seattle.