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Cheryl Frank Memorial Prize

The Cheryl Frank Memorial Prize is awarded annually for a book that constitutes, motivates or exemplifies the best and/or most innovative new writing in or about the tradition of critical realism, including the philosophy of metaReality, in the previous year.

The winner will be invited to give the annual Cheryl Frank Memorial Lecture at the IACR Annual Conference or a suitable venue. If the author wishes, the lecture will be considered for publication in the Journal of Critical Realism.

Past recipients


  • 2022 Dave Edler-Vass, Inventing Value: The Social Construction of Monetary Wealth (Cambridge University Press)

  • 2021 Priscilla Alderson, Critical Realism for Health and Illness Research (Policy Press)

  • 2020 Hubert Buch-Hansen and Peter Nielsen, Critical Realism: Basics and Beyond (Red Globe Press)

  • 2019 Tony Lawson, The Nature of Social Reality (Routledge)

  • 2018 Graham Scambler, Sociology, Health and the Fractured Society (Routledge)

  • 2017 Margaret Archer, Morphogenesis and Human Flourishing (Springer)

  • 2016 (joint) Roy Bhaskar (ed. by Mervyn Hartwig) Enlightened Common Sense (Routledge); and Leigh Price and Heila Lotz-Sisitka (eds.) Critical Realism, Environmental Learning and Social-Ecological Change (Routledge).

  • 2015  (joint) Pierpaolo Donati and Margaret S. Archer, The Relational Subject (Cambridge) and Douglas V. Porpora, Reconstructing Sociology: The Critical Realist Approach (Cambridge)

  • 2014 Matthew L. N. Wilkinson, A Fresh Look at Islam in a Multi-Faith World: A Philosophy of Success through Education (Routledge)

  • 2013 Lena Gunnarsson, The Contradictions of Love: Towards a Feminist-Realist Ontology of Sociosexuality (Routledge)

  • 2012 (joint) Ruth Groff, Ontology Revisited: Metaphysics in Social and Political Philosophy and Nick Hostettler, Eurocentriam: A Marxian Critical Realist Critique.

  • 2011 Chris Sarra, Strong and Smart – Towards a Pedagogy for Emancipation: Education for First Peoples.

  • 2010 (joint) Alan Norrie, Dialectic and Difference: Dialectical Critical Realism and the Grounds of Justice and Christian Smith, What is a Person? Rethinking Humanity, Social Life, and the Moral Good from the Person Up.

Cheryl Frank

Cheryl Lynn Frank (1946-2010) was an American scholar and activist. Born on August 1, 1946, in Illinois, she married and had two children; was active in the civil rights movement, participating in Martin Luther King’s march in Selma, Alabama and later established the first domestic violence shelter in the USA (in Champaign, Illinois); she worked as a policy analyst at the state level, as a journalist, editor and freelance writer. She took Master degrees in politics and journalism, did extensive research on the position of women and Native Americans in the twentieth century and completed extensive doctoral work in cultural studies and mass communication. She became, however, increasingly dissatisfied with dominant positivist and poststructuralist methodologies, and at the same time, increasingly interested in spiritual issues.


In November 2002, she met Roy Bhaskar at a meeting of the Foundation of Light (of which she was President) in Ithaca, New York. They corresponded, and she joined him in London in February 2003. From then on, she was his lover, partner and inseparable companion, and became utterly devoted to his well-being and to the cause of critical realism and the philosophy of metaReality, throwing herself into this work. She died after a short illness on January 22, 2010, leaving, besides Roy, her two children and three grandchildren. Her only published work in critical realism is an essay in Interdisciplinarity and Climate Change (which she co-edited with Roy and others), but she made a huge contribution, assisting Roy in his work, and to the movement and to her many friends within it. The collection of essays, Critical Realism and Spirituality, edited by Mervyn Hartwig and Jamie Morgan, is dedicated to her memory.

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