Constitution and Bylaws


Article I. NAME



1. The aim of the Association is to support and strengthen comparative literature studies.

2. The Association will strive to foster an interest in literature as a form of artistic expression beyond national and linguistic boundaries, to help acquaint the community at large with the aims and values of comparative literature studies, and to help place young scholars in academic positions where they may be effective as teachers and scholar-critics. In order to achieve these goals the Association will

a. hold meetings for the purpose of presenting and discussing studies in comparative literature;

b. cooperate with other organizations interested in the attainment of these objectives;


Upon payment of annual dues, membership in the association shall be open to anyone interested in furthering its aims.


1. The officers of the Association shall be a President, a Vice-President, and a Secretary-Treasurer, al of whom shall be members in good standing of the Association.

2. These officers, together with the members of the Advisory Board, shall constitute the Executive Committee of the Association.


1. The officers and the members of the Advisory Board shall be elected by the membership of the Association. All shall serve for two years. The Secretary-Treasurer may be re-elected for a maximum of two consecutive two-year terms.


1. The Association shall have an electronic and a postal mailing address and office, which shall usually be the same as those of the Secretary-Treasurer.

2. The membership may at any time decide by majority vote to transfer the location of the Association.


1. Amendments to the constitution and By-Laws of the Association shall be made only at a regular meeting, by a majority vote of the members present.

2. Proposed amendments shall be presented in writing to the Secretary-Treasurer at least four weeks before a regular meeting of the Association. The Secretary-Treasurer shall then be responsible for seeing that the membership receives the proposed amendment prior to the next regular meeting.




1. It shall be the duty of the President to provide executive leadership in the activities of the Association.

2. The President shall preside at all regular meetings of the Association and the Executive Committee. Although the President is a non-voting member of the Board, in the event of a tie, the President shall cast the deciding vote.

3. The President, in consultation with the Executive Committee, shall appoint the chairs of all Committees of the Association (except the Nominating Committee) and, in further consultation with the chairs of these Committees, shall appoint members to them.

4. The President may call meetings of the officers and members of the advisory board in addition to regularly scheduled meetings at SCLA conferences. These may be held during the conferences of the American Comparative Literature Association or the Modern Language Association, or they may be convened by telephone or electronically.


5. The Vice-President shall preside at meetings in the absence of the President and shall have the powers and duties of the President, should the President be unable to perform his/her functions.

6.The Vice-President shall chair the committee to award the Rutledge Prize for the best essay in comparative literature submitted by a graduate student.


7. The Secretary-Treasurer shall maintain the records of the activities of the association.

8. The Secretary-Treasurer shall issue notices of all meetings and conduct the official correspondence of the Association, in consultation with the President.

9. The Secretary-Treasurer shall collect the dues of the Association, subscription fees, and all other funds payable to it, and shall pay all bills incurred by the Association.

10. The Secretary-Treasurer shall keep a record of all income and expenditures of the Association, and shall make a financial report at each regular meeting. The Secretary-Treasurer shall have the responsibility for the management of the funds of the Association, including the presentation of an annual budget to be approved by the Executive Committee.

11. The Secretary-Treasurer shall act as the corresponding secretary and maintain files of official correspondence.

12. The Secretary-Treasurer shall take and distribute minutes of the SCLA Annual Business Meeting and the Annual Meeting of the SCLA Advisory Board.

13. The Secretary-Treasurer shall keep membership and subscription lists current.

14. The Secretary-Treasurer shall work closely with the Editor and the Book Review Editor of The Comparatist.


1. The Advisory Board shall advise the President and other officers on matters of both immediate and long-range interest.

2. The Advisory Board shall consist of eight persons, all of whom shall be members in good standing of the Association, elected by the membership at large. The number of persons elected to the Advisory Board shall always be an even number in order to preserve the President’s power to break a tie vote on the Executive Committee.

3. The term of office of members of the Advisory Board shall be two years. Of those elected the first year, half will serve for one year only.

4. The immediate past President of the Association shall automatically be appointed a non-voting member of the Executive Committee.


1. The Executive Committee shall consist of the President, the Vice-President, the Secretary-Treasurer, the Members of the Advisory Board, and the immediate Past-President.

2. The Executive Committee shall assume the responsibility for advancing and developing the aims and purposes of the Association.

3. The Executive Committee shall meet at every regular meeting of the Association, prior to the annual meeting of the full membership. It shall present reports for consideration by the membership at the annual meeting.

4. The Executive Committee is authorized to take all such actions as will carry out the Association’s purposes and promote its interests. For instance, the Executive Committee may authorize the award of grants and prizes, honorary fellowships or memberships, publications of the Association, and the establishment of contractual relationships with other organizations in order to support and carry out the policies and objectives of the Association.

5. If an elected member of the Executive Committee is unable to attend a meeting, he/she shall notify the presiding officer in writing of his/her designated substitute, who shall be a member of the Association in good standing.

6. The Executive Committee shall approve the Association’s budget.

7. A quorum of seven members of the Executive Committee is required for the transaction of business.

8. The Executive Committee shall appoint the Editor and the Book Review Editor of The Comparatist by a majority of the Executive Committee members present, for renewable three-year terms of office.


1. The President, in consultation with the Executive Committee, may appoint committees to deal with publicity, membership, gifts and grants, finances, research activities, placement of faculty, and any other matters related to the interests of the Association.

2. Committees are authorized to spend funds from the Association only after their requests for funds have been approved by the Executive Committee. The Executive Committee may authorize out-of-pocket expenditures for each committee to cover routine operating expenses.

3. The duration of all committees (except the Nominating Committee) and committee appointments shall be at the discretion of the President.

Editor of The Comparatist

1. The Editor of The Comparatist shall attend the meetings of the Executive Committee as a non-voting ex-officio member of that committee.

2. The Editor of The Comparatist shall be responsible for receiving and soliciting submissions for publication in the journal.

3. The Editor of The Comparatist shall oversee refereeing of articles submitted for publication in the journal.

4. The Editor of The Comparatist shall supervise al aspects of the production of The Comparatist, and consult with the Secretary-Treasurer with respect to costs.

5. The Editor of The Comparatist shall make arrangements for the distribution of the journal.


1. Regular meetings of the Association shall be held at least once every year. The Association shall give whatever support it can to special meetings or conferences supported by its membership.

2. The time and place of regular meetings shall be determined by the Executive Committee.

3. Upon due notice in writing, the President may call special meetings of the Association.


1. The Nominating Committee shall consist of three members elected by the membership at large at the annual meeting. The candidate receiving the most votes shall be declared Chairman. The Nominating Committee shall serve one year and be ineligible for consecutive reelection.

2. A slate of at least one candidate and no more than two each for the positions of President, Vice-President, and Secretary-Treasurer, and for the members of the Advisory Board shall be drawn up by the Nominating Committee. Additional nominations may be made from the floor. Voting will be held at the regular business meeting of the Association. Those receiving the most votes in the Advisory Board election shall be declared winners.

3. In the event of a vacancy in office occurring between regular meetings of the Association, the President, in consultation with the Executive Committee and the Nominating Committee, shall make an interim appointment.

Article VII. DUES

1. The annual dues, payable at the beginning of the calendar year, shall be set by the members of the Association at a regular meeting. All members shall receive the Association’s newsletter. Students and emeritus members shall pay reduced dues.

2. The right to vote or to hold office in the Association shall be contingent upon payment of dues; and no one shall be considered a member of the Association whose dues are more than twelve months in arrears.

3. Honorary fellows or members of the Association shall enjoy life membership without payment of dues.

4. Any member who retires after twenty years of paid-up membership in the Association shall automatically be awarded a life membership without further payment of dues.

5. The annual dues may be changed by a majority vote of the members present at a regular business meeting of the Association.

6. During intervals between regular meetings, the annual dues may be changed by a majority vote of the Executive Committee, but the change must be ratified by majority vote at the next business meeting of the Association.


The Executive Committee shall be responsible for inspecting the accounts of the Secretary-Treasurer and may, at its discretion, designate a commercial auditing firm to audit these accounts.


Traditional rules of parliamentary procedure shall be observed at all meetings of the Association. If necessary, the President shall appoint a Parliamentarian to serve at any given meeting.


The Association may be dissolved only at a special meeting called for the purpose by vote of three-fourths of the members present. Upon any such dissolution of the Association, all its property remaining after satisfaction of all its obligations shall be distributed to such one or more learned societies organized and operated exclusively for literary or educational purposes, as the Executive Committee may select.

Rev. 90